Written by Glyn Tomkins

At the SR-7B conclave at Camp Raven Knob, teams from Occoneechee Lodge competed and placed first in both the Pre-Ordeal and Brotherhood ceremony competitions. In all, our lodge’s ceremonialists took seven of the ten first-place awards along with three second place awards for the two ceremonies.

Our Lodge was represented by the Eluwak chapter pre-ordeal ceremony team who were coached by Bobby Stockburger at the event. The Eluwak team earned the right to represent the lodge by winning the Art Ferguson Pre-Ordeal Ceremony Award at Spring Pow-Wow. This award is presented annually to the best Pre-Ordeal team in the lodge and is named after long-serving ceremony coach also from Eluwak.

The Pre-Ordeal team members are:

  • Henry Hill – Nutiket. 1st place award.
  • Christopher Radcliff – Meteu. 2nd place award.
  • Jonathan Washburn – Allowat Sakima. 2nd place award.
  • Allen Stockburger – Kichkinet. 1st place award.

The Lodge’s Brotherhood team also showed how dedication to the lodge can pay off when they earned both the first place for the best team and three of the four first-place awards for the individual principals. The team coached by Glyn Tomkins of Saponi chapter is made up of youth from across the lodge. This presents a whole other challenge as the team is spread far and wide with members from across the Council area. By being creative and using the technology available to them, the team manages to meet regularly to practice in front of their computer screens and they also utilize every minute they can muster when at Camp Durant for lodge events.

The Lodge Brotherhood team members are:

  • Cody Helm – Nutiket. 1st place award
  • Robbie Fisher – Meteu, 2nd place award
  • Richard Aaron – Allowat Sakima, 1st place award
  • Jordan Deagan – Kichkinet. 1st place award

“Ceremonies help me make a deep and real connection to the true meaning and purpose of the Order of the Arrow”, said Helm who has played Nutiket in the Brotherhood ceremony at every Ordeal for the lodge since the Order moved to the new Brotherhood Ceremony in 2015.

“Now is a great time to get involved in ceremonies,” said Tomkins. “Every Arrowman of Occoneechee Lodge deserves a decent ceremony and it is only through the dedication and commitment of Servant Leaders, like you in the ring that we can accomplish this”.

“He who serves his fellows is, of all fellows, greatest”. Chingachgook.

Glyn will be leading a Brotherhood Ceremonies workshop at Sprint Inductions. Any youth interested in getting that deep understanding of what being an Arrowman really means can come and participate and you too can serve the lodge through ceremonies and get closer to the true spirit and meaning of our Order.