Sunday afternoon at Grace Baptist Church in Tyrone, three local young men were recognized in an Eagle Scout Court of Honor for achieving scouting’s highest rank.
Jacob and Caleb Orr, sons of Rob and Brenda Orr, and Nathan Walk, son of Randy and Julie Walk, were all presented with their citations and badges. They recited the Eagle Scout Oath in front of friends, family, other scouts and leaders, and distinguished guests, including Senator Judy Ward, State Representative Jim Gregory and Tyrone Mayor Bill Latchford.
All three young men completed their projects at Grace Baptist, where they have attended church since they were born.
In 2018, the first of the three projects was completed by Jacob Orr. Orr built benches for the front of the church and for a planned outdoor worship area that his brother Caleb, would later complete for his own project.
Orr said, “Our church was in need of benches out front. People needed a place to sit and wait to be picked up after services. Plus, we constructed five benches which I knew would work well with the project that my younger brother was about to start--an outdoor worship area.”
Orr said that while the fundraising was difficult, the church helped with donations and purchasing Gardner’s peanut butter pretzel rods. “I also got some nice contributions from local businesses,” he said.
Nathan Walk then began his project in January 2019. Walk said he was having some trouble deciding on a project when, “I noticed that the walls in my church were damaged, so I decided that I wanted to help the church out.” He repaired and painted the walls in the foyer and one of the hallways.
The project, at two full months, took longer than Walk anticipated. “The hardest part was spending basically all of my free time working on my project,” Walk said. He spent many evenings, weekends and snow days working at the church.
Thanks to generous contributions from businesses, individuals, and fundraisers, enough money was left over from donations that Walk was able to add a large decal to the foyer: Psalm 122:1, “I was glad when they said to me, ‘Let us go to the house of the Lord!’”
Caleb Orr then began his project in August of 2019, adding an outdoor worship area in the rear of the church, which includes the five benches his brother made, a fire pit, and stone patio. “I chose my scout project because I thought it would be nice to have an outdoor worship area. I envisioned singing praise and worship songs around a fire and a different atmosphere to have youth group from time to time — and mountain pies and s’mores, of course,” he said.
“The most rewarding part was seeing the project come together and getting to work with some wonderful people who sacrificed their time and talents to help me accomplish my goal,” Orr added. His project is being put to good use and his visions of people sitting around the fire pit and enjoying the worship area have become a reality.
At the court of honor, Grace Baptist Lead Pastor Aaron Jeffery quoted the Boy Scouts founder, who said that scouts should first love and serve God and second, love and serve their neighbors.
“Today we have come together to applaud these young men,” Jeffery said, “who have attained not only the highest rank in scouts, they have also demonstrated first rate character. Jacob, Caleb and Nathan, well done, and congratulations.”