A Flag Dedication Ceremony

Dedicating a new flag, or re-dedicating an old one, is less common nowadays and many Guiders will never have attended such a ceremony, much less have any idea as to how to arrange one. This is just one suggestion as to how to do it - there are no hard and fast rules so feel free to adapt and improvise. A Flag dedication is also a suitable occasion for everyone to renew her promise, and also for new Guides to be enrolled if they so wish.

Opening hymn or suitable song - for suggestions click here.

The flags of all units are paraded in during the opening hymn, with those already dedicated taking precedence and the Union Flag leading the parade. The flag(s) to be dedicated are kept back and brought forward during the introduction.

Introduction :
We are gathered here today to dedicate (or re-dedicate) this Flag (or these flags).

Dedication :
(Unit flag) On behalf of the Guide Association (or local branch, etc.) I dedicate this Flag for the (name of unit.) Wherever it is seen, may it fly as the symbol of our unit of the Guide Association and the greater Scout and Guide movement worldwide.

(Union Flag) On behalf of the (name of Unit) I dedicate this Union Flag, the Flag of our country, symbol of the unity of our nation in its three crosses. May we see it as a reminder of the pledge of loyalty to our Queen and Country which we make in our Guide Promise.

Promise :
All Guides present renew their promise, facing the flag(s) and saluting.

I promise that I will do my best :
  to do my duty to God,
to serve the Queen and my country
to help other people
and to keep the Guide Law
(or Brownie Guide law)

A Guide or Guider reads the Guide Law (or each Law can be read by a different Guide)

A Guide is honest, reliable and can be trusted.
A Guide is helpful and uses her time and abilities wisely.

A Guide faces challenge and learns from her experiences.
A Guide is a good friend and a sister to all Guides.
A Guide is polite and considerate.
A Guide respects all living things and takes care of the world around her.

... if any Rangers are present, one of them may also add

As a Ranger Guide / Ranger Guides, I / we also undertake to be of service to the community in which I / we live, and the wider world community around me / us.

... and a Brownie reads the Brownie Guide Law :

A Brownie Guide thinks of others before herself and does a Good Turn every day.

The newly-dedicated flags may be laid upon the altar if the ceremony is taking place in church, or simply stood at the front if in a hall or similar. If the flag is to be flown from a flagpole during the ceremony, instructions may be found here.

A suitable hymn or song can be sung at this point - for some suggestions, click here.

Readings - see the writings of Lord Baden-Powell or the Readings Index for some suggestions.

An edited passage from B-P's final letter to the Scouts :

"I believe that God put us in this world to be happy and enjoy life. Happiness does not come from being rich, nor merely being successful in your career, nor by self-indulgence. One step towards happiness is to make yourself healthy and strong while you are young, so that you can be useful and so you can enjoy life when you are grown.
Be contented with what you have got and make the best of it. Look on the bright side of things instead of the gloomy one. But the real way to get happiness is by giving out happiness to other people. Try and leave this world a little better than you found it.
'Be Prepared' to live happy - stick to your Guide Promise always - even after you have ceased to be a girl - and God help you to do it. "

And another, with the famous "Look Wider" quotation :

"In our work - indeed, in any work of life - we should look forward, well forward, with high aims and hope; look around with joy and goodwill; look back with thankfulness at what has been accomplished and then press on with renewed vigour, with helpful initiative, and with broadened outlook, towards the highest goal, not forgetting to give a helping hand to others as we go. But when you look - look WIDE; and even when you think you are looking wide - LOOK WIDER STILL. "

Prayers :
A Guide may read this Guides' Prayer :

Grant, O Lord, we pray thee, that thy blessing may rest upon us and all other Guides.
Help us with thy grace to serve our country and keep our Guide Promise and Law.
Make us humble and friendly, eager for adventure, alert and prepared for service.

Give us the courage to dare to do right,

Make us both strong to fight and steadfast to endure,

And may our lives be filled with the joy that spreads happiness everywhere.


... and a Guider may read this Guiders' Prayer :

O God, give me a sense of the greatness of the work I do within this movement.

Help me to do it faithfully and diligently, and grant that nothing may persuade me ever to be absent from duty when I can be there.

Help me to grudge no effort to train and equip myself to do my work in the movement as well as I can do it.

Give me a sense of responsibility and help me always to remember that my example is more important than my words, and that I teach by what I am, more than by what I say.

And, help me to find joy in seeing girls grow up and be good citizens of this country and good citizens of Your Kingdom, and in knowing that, by Your grace, I had something to do with it.

This I ask for love's sake.


... or an alternative Leader's Prayer is printed here .

Final hymn:
ll the flags parade out, led by the Union Flag, then the newly-dedicated flags, then any other flags. They may form a Guard of Honour at the entrance if you wish.

Closing blessing, read either by a member of the clergy (if present), a senior member of the Guiding team or a guest, or sing "Go Well And Safely."


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