The aims of International Catholic Conference of Scouting are:
• to contribute to the development and strengthening of the spiritual dimension of scouting, mindful of the unity and diversity of the World Scout Movement;
• to promote the active participation of Catholic Scouts in the mission of the Church;
• to facilitate communication between the Catholic Church and the World Scout Movement.
In accordance with its aims the ICCS:
• offers to Catholic Scouts, initiatives in the area of education and ecclesial life of the Church;
• cooperates with other Scout or Guide organizations whose aims are the development of the spiritual dimension;
• intervenes in questions of the pastoral care of youth
• promotes ecumenical and Interreligious dialogue;
• promotes education for peace and justice;
• promotes with WOSM a better understanding of Scouting and its development in the Catholic Church;
• takes all initiatives necessary to carry out its aims.
Membership of ICCS
The conference consists of Member organisation and Observer member Organisation.
Member Organisations may be:
a) Catholic Scout Associations, recognised by the Church, in a National Scout Federation, and which are members of the World Organisation of the Scout Movement.
b) Catholic Organizations within a Scout Association (Catholic Council, Guild or any group or forum of Catholic Scouts within a Scout Association), itself a member of WOSM, and recognised by that Association and by the local Catholic hierarchy.
Observer Member Organizations may be:
c) Any Scout organization belonging to WOSM that wishes to be associated with ICCS but does not wish to fulfil the criteria required for full membership may apply for Observer Member status.
In the event that a member organisation ceases its relationship with the WOSM the Steering Committee of ICCS may decide and inform the ICCS World Council that a Member Organisation that has been suspended by WOSM be temporarily considered as an Observer Member. Full membership can be restored only when relationships with WOSM are re-established.
Training and information
ICCS provides both training through workshops and seminars, and information through publications and documents dealing with the spiritual dimension of Scout education, the Scout educational method and education in the faith, establishing the right relationship between membership in the Church and membership in the Scout Movement, and dialogue with other creeds in Scouting.
Regions of ICCS
In fulfilment of the aims of the Conference, the World Council has established Regions composed of its member Organisations. So as to achieve harmony and consistency the 4 regions of World ICCS are aligned with the Christian world and coincide where practical with the Scout Regions of the World Organisation of the Scout Movement.
It is agreed in principal that the Regions of ICCS may not in any way, act or deed, threaten the unity of the Conference, at the level of World Scouting or the Catholic Church. The rules of procedure governing the functioning and organisation of the Region are drawn up by each Regional Council and are approved by the World Steering Committee. However, in the event of conflict between these rules and the Statutes of the ICCS Conference, the World Statutes shall prevail.
The European-Mediterranean Region
Our European-Mediterranean Region reaches from Iceland to Iraq and from Portugal to Finland, encompassing the Christian world of Europe and the Middle-East.
According to our records the EM Region currently has a membership of 24 full and 8 observer members. Information about member and observer member associations within the region can be found on the map of the region.
There are 46 Associations in the WOSM European Scout Region many of which in the past, were members of ICCS but have since left the fold. There are many reasons for the fall off in membership: on the one hand we have the abolition of ‘Federations’ by the World Scout Committee and the drive towards having only one association per country, and on the other: the advent of ‘multi-denominational’ associations brought about by the cultural shifts towards pluralism within the members states of the European Union.
This has had a dramatic effect on the practice of spiritual and religious activities within Scouting, with for example: a ‘Scouts Own’ or morning meditation being offered as a substitute for Mass, so as avoid offending ‘non-believers’! – this trend is increasing even within traditional Catholic associations. However, there are still a majority of associations (both Catholic and multi-denominational) who in part fulfilment of the section of the Scout Promise that deals with Duty to God strive, to diligently promote the religious dimension of Scouting, this ensuring that the faith belief and practices of their members are are fully supported and facilitated.
The governing bodies of the EM Region are:
The Regional Council
The Regional Committee
The Regional Secretary (Chairperson).
According to its own requirements, and in agreement with the Steering Committee, the Region may establish other structures as are necessary for its operation.
The Regional Council
The following shall be members of the Regional Council:
• Representative of ICCS member organisations in the E M Region – (preferably those at the highest level or their commissioned deputies).
• The members of the Regional Committee
The following have a right to attend ex officio the meetings of the Regional Council:
• The Secretary General of the ICCS
• The World Chaplain of the ICCS
• A delegate from the European Scout Regional Committee of the WOSM
The functions of the Regional Council are to:
• determine the program of activities for the Region.
• elect the Regional Secretary / Chairperson
• elect the members of the regional committee.
• approve the report of the regional secretary / chairperson.
• approve the regional accounts and budgets.
• discuss motions, resolutions and / or recommendations, recommendations presented by the members of the Regional Council.
• Voting on motions, resolutions and recommendations presented at Coucil meetings
• decide on the advisability of organising a Regional Seminar / Council meeting .
• establish working groups on topics of specific interest.
• review proposals put by member associations or other interested bodies.
• establish the rules of procedure for the region and to propose modifications in case of necessity.
• propose to the regional Secretary the names of associations who are willing and available to host and organise a regional meetings: for example the Annual Seminar Council meeting and / or committee meetings.
The Regional Committee
The EM Regional committee is comprised of a:
• Regional Secretary (Chairperson)
• Regional Chaplain (Ecclesiastical Assistant)
• Regional Treasurer
• Ordinary members of the committee.
The functions of the Regional Committee are to:
• Prepare and present a programme for the region to the Regional Council
• Insure that the programme adopted by the Council is properly implemented
• Organise regional activities
• Organise meetings and seminars
• Receive and circulate information to member organisations
• Manage the finances of the region
• Nominate on behalf of member organisation, members to the Brotherhood of Saint George.