New Lodge; New Legacy
BY MATT ROSENDAHL
It is very rare in the Order of the Arrow for a brand new lodge to be formed
in a council that previously did not have one, but that is exactly what happened
on the weekend of May 18-20, 2012 as the Long Beach Area Council in California formed
Puvunga is the first lodge to be formed in a council without a merger since 1970,
when Ashsin Lodge launched in the Chamarro Council serving Guam. No non-merger lodges
have formed in the continental United States since 1968.
Ray Capp, the chairman of the national Order of the Arrow committee, and Steve
Bradley, the vice chairman of region and section operations, were both in attendance
as OA history was made. Thirty-eight youth and thirteen adults were inducted at
the inaugural Ordeal, including the council president and four members of the council's
executive board, as well as the council's camping chairman.
The lodge name that was chosen, Puvunga, translates into "gathering place" and
the totem for the new lodge is a porpoise. The youth also chose their first ever
lodge officers, setting the foundation for a great Order of the Arrow program in
the Long Beach area.
George Felix was elected as lodge chief, and shared his excitement for this new
position: "At first I was surprised, now I feel like the coolest kid on the block."
He said, "I feel honored, and I hope I make my council proud! I will work hard
to try to live up to their expectations."
The creation of this lodge would not have been possible without the commitment
of the council's leadership to youth development, the help of neighboring lodges-who
provided the necessary ceremonies teams-and the organization and passion of leaders
on the section, regional, and national levels.
"I am proud of the body of careful and respectful work that Steve Bradley carried
out behind the scenes with the council leadership, the region support, and the great
work of both the surrounding lodges and section W4S," said Capp.