On Nov 14th 2020, the Transatlantic Council of the Boy Scouts of America awarded Andrew J. Boyd the NESA Outstanding Eagle Scout Award (NOESA) for distinguished service in his profession and to the larger community. This service includes his work training Scouts internationally in interreligious dialogue in collaboration with the European office of the World Organization of the Scout Movement. This award recognizes notable Eagle Scouts who performed distinguished service at the local, state, or regional level and who have inspired others through their actions and have devoted a lifetime to their profession, avocation, community, and beliefs.
Reflecting on his personal formation, A.J. explains, “So much of my life has been formed by my vocation to ecumenical and interreligious dialogue on one hand, and the values of Scouting on the other.”
A.J. feels that the two go hand in hand, “Scouting was one of the first places I experienced religious diversity and dialogue that was celebrated rather than ignored or suppressed.”
For A.J., this award is humbling and heartwarming, ”It is really touching that one part of my world would reach over to recognize my efforts in another.”
A.J. was a member of the second cohort of the Russell Berrie Fellowship in Interreligious Studies at the Angelicum. Originally from the United States of America, he has been living in Rome since 2009. For most of that time, he has worked as a university lecturer in theology and religious studies, with particular interest in ecumenism, interreligious dialogue, and the history of the papacy.
In that time, A.J. has been working diligently to bring interreligious dialogue outside the intellectual halls of the academy and make it relevant to the lives of Scouts around the world. These young leaders around the world will now “Be Prepared” with the skills to communicate across lines of religious difference, establish meaningful relationships and have the capacity to shape a more peaceful future.
We are very proud to call A.J. Boyd a JPII Leader and we thank him for his service!