Catholic Scouts in Diocese Earn Religious Awards

Despite the difficulties posed by the pandemic, 104 Catholic religious emblems have been earned by the Scouts, Cubs, and Webelos of the Diocese of Allentown since March 2020. All the scouts were recognized and 29 were present at a Catholic Awards Ceremony June 12 at St. Mary Church, Kutztown.

The event was hosted by the Allentown Diocese Catholic Committee on Scouting. The ceremony is normally held annually but had been cancelled in 2020 and 2021 due to the restrictions on gatherings.

The awards ceremony began with the scouts marching into the church, posting the colors, saluting the flag, and reciting the Scout Oath and Law. Then Father Eric Tolentino, the Catholic Scout Chaplain, led the scouts and their families in Eucharistic Adoration.

Bill Minford, vice chairman of the ADCCOS for Minsi Trails Council, provided musical accompaniment for the hymns. After the Blessed Sacrament had been placed in the monstrance, Father Tolentino heard confessions.

After the Blessed Sacrament had been reposed back in the tabernacle, Father blessed the medals to be presented. All four of the possible Religious Emblems were represented: the Light of Christ Award for Tiger and Wolf Cubs, the Parvuli Dei Award for older Cubs, the Ad Altare Dei Award for Scouts in seventh grade and up, and the Pope Pius XII Award for high school Scouts and Venturers.

The names of all recipients since March 2020 were read out by Randy Bjorken, Chairman of ADCCOS-Hawk Mountain Council, Father Tolentino and Fred Flemming, ADCCOS chairman, presented the medals to those awardees in attendance.


In addition to the awards to the Scouts and Cubs, several special awards were made.

Susan Beller of Holy Trinity, Whitehall in Minsi Trails Council was presented with the Bishop’s Award. This award recognizes those who have made a significant impact in youth faith formation. Mrs. Beller is a Eucharistic minister and has been a CCD teacher in her parish. She has played a key role in the Catholic Scout Weekends for many years.

Not present but also receiving the Bishop’s Award were: from Hawk Mountain Council, Eric Parks of St. Columbkill, Boyertown; and from Minsi Trails Council, Father Thomas Buckley of St. Joseph, Coopersburg, and Steven Sagnip of Our Lady of Victory, Tannersville.

The last award was the Quality Diocese Award for 2021 given by the National Catholic Committee on Scouting, recognizing that the Allentown Diocese CCOS had met the national goals for an effective program using Scouting as youth ministry.

The following Cubs and Scouts were recognized.


Light of Christ Award

Hawk Mountain Council

St. Ambrose, Schuylkill Haven – Joshua Zawisza, Nicholas Zawisza.

St. Ignatius Loyola, Sinking Spring – Devin Ashcroft, Andrew Matlack, Benjamin Roffer, Grace Sobota.

Minsi Trails Council

St. Joseph the Worker, Orefield – Zachary Asparro, Paul Charnick, Peter Kowal

St. Nicholas, Walnutport – Henry Geueke.

St. Thomas More, Allentown – Cooper Albeck, Robert Arnold, Roger Arnold, Luke Borkowski, Aiden Carbone, Benjamin Carocci, Tate Conrad, Daniel Heller, John Heller, Simon Keane, Drew McKechnie, Charles McLemore, Henry McLemore, Patrick McNealis, Broderick Miner, Gavin Piccini, Cole Reichle, Joshua Solderich, August Wendel, Cole White, William Zambelli.

Parvuli Dei Award

Hawk Mountain Council

St. Ambrose, Schuylkill Haven – Adam Zawisza.

St. Columbkill, Boyertown – Nathanael Davenport, Noah Davenport, Daniel Kovach.

St. Ignatius Loyola, Sinking Spring – Devin Ashcroft, Michael Beitinger, Evan Derr, Isaac Derr, Travis Reifsnyder, Benjamin Roffer, Riley Shannon.

Minsi Trails Council

Holy Family, Nazareth – Gianluca Carbonetto, Oliver Pellegrino.

Notre Dame, Bethlehem – Lucas Diaz, Zain Khallouf, Matthew James Santana, Weston Shapple, Benjamin Soares

St. Ann Emmaus – Gregory Bower, Matthew Compano.

St. Elizabeth of Hungary, Whitehall – Brogan Emery.

St. Joseph the Worker, Orefield – Thomas Argirou, Eduardo Da, Luz Lous, Julian Guerrero, Hawi Kariuki, Aiden Macenat, Maximillian Montone, Sebastian Pascuzzi, Dylan Porcioto, Shafiq Sharif, Noah Smith, Adam Spieker, Matteo Trevisan.

St. Thomas More, Allentown – Conrad Landon, Cole Heigl, Declan McGee, Nicolo Ramunni, Noah Russo, Ryan Spisszak, Duncan Toomey.


Ad Altare Dei Award

Hawk Mountain Council

St. Columbkill, Boyertown – Christopher Spece, Joseph Trout.

St. John XXIII, Tamaqua – Anthony Odorizzi, Eric Richardson.

St. Joseph of Panther Valley, Summit Hill – Logan Girard, Ethan Risteter.

Minsi Trails Council

Holy Family, Nazareth – James Cunningham, Sebastian Malaver, Christopher Walters.

Notre Dame, Bethlehem – Ilia Khallouf, Luke Mille, Alex Younes.

Our Lady of Perpetual Help, Bethlehem – Gabriel Scotto-Dicesare.

St. Jane Frances de Chantal, Easton – Alex Kehm, Shane Muretta, Skylar Pfeffer, Adrian Pirog, Jack Samra.

St. Thomas More, Allentown – Evan Borkowski, Kevin Carbone, Keegan Damitz, Jacob Piccini, Charles Samer, Henry Samer.

Pope Pius XII Award

Hawk Mountain Council

St. Columbkill, Boyertown– Caiden McGill, Christopher Spece, Joseph Trout.

Minsi Trails Council

St. Ann, Emmaus – Aidan Brownbridge, Supreeth Dmello, Jonathan Romero, Aidan Tarafas.


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