Parent’s Guide


Your son has been elected to be a candidate for membership in the Order of the Arrow. Upon completion of his Ordeal weekend, he will have all the rights and priviledges of all arrowmen in our Lodge.

What is the Order of the Arrow?
The Order of the Arrow (or as most people call it, the “OA”) is Scouting’s National Honor Society. It was founded in 1915 by Dr. E. Urner Goodman and Carroll A Edson at Treasure Island, the Council camp for the council in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Units hold elections where Scouts are selected based on their adherance to the Scout Oath and Law. Requirements are at least First Class, 15 days and nights of camping within 2 years prior to the election (must include 1 long-term camping experience), and Scoutmaster approval.

What to Expect
The Ordeal is a vital part of the Induction Process of the Order of the Arrow. The Ordeal provides a time for a Scout to reflect upon his experiences within Scouting. These reflections will hopefully broaden his experiences, and reaffirming his love for Scouting.
During the Ordeal experience, a candidate is required to:

  • Maintain silence
  • Receive small amounts of food
  • Work on Camp improvement projects
  • Sleep alone and apart from other campers

The entire experience is designed to teach significant values.
Ordeal weekends are filled with many activities, all of which are safe and fully supervised in accordance with BSA Policies. There are hundreds of thousands of OA members, all of whom have participated in an Ordeal. The Ordeal experience is one that no scout will ever forget because of the honor that has been given by being inducted into the Order of the Arrow.

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