Chaplain: Rev. Dr. Dylan Toussaint
Captain: Bro. Kitson Murray
The Boy’s Brigade is the oldest uniform organization for boys. It was started by Sir William Alexander Smith in Glasgow Scotland on October 4, 1883. The movement was formed out of a need for an organization that would cater to the needs of boys during their leisure hours, train their character and encourage them to become Christians.
The need was not only in Scotland those 120 years ago, but also here in Jamaica. The first Boy’s Brigade Company was formed on July 17, 1894, at the Coke Methodist Church, in Kingston; sometime after the 11th Jamaica Company was formed here at Edgewater under the Kingston Battalion.
The Boy’s Brigade movement pays special attention to certain critical elements, such as Religion, which plays a central part in the organization. Each meeting should begin and end with devotions. These are regular bible studies and boys are encouraged to be integrated with the Church community.
Discipline is another key element. Boys must be involved in a drill at each meeting and a drill parade at least once per month. Drilling helps to discipline the boys by teaching them to stand erect and obey commands.
Boys must wear a uniform for identification and for training: as each boy will be responsible for caring and cleaning his own uniform. As the boys here at Edgewater identify with other brigaders island-wide, they have been involved in several activities over the years: such as camps, expeditions, Independence Grand Gala, Heroes Day Service, Remembrance Day Ceremony, Founder’s day parades, special church services, fundraising event and socials.
The Captain is Bro. Kitson Murray. All boys ages 8-18+ years old are invited to come and learn more about God, come and play cricket, football as well as other outdoor activities.
The Boys Brigade Motto is: “Sure and Steadfast” (Hebrews 6:19).
Our Object: The Advancement of Christ’s Kingdom, Boys and the promotion of habits of Obedience, Reverence, Discipline, Self-Respect, and all that tends towards true Christian Manliness.
The Chaplain: The Minister of the Church is, and as such is an Officer of the Company. He/she gives guidance to the Officers in planning programmes for the boys.
The Captain: Is the Officer in charge of the company. He is appointed by the church and is responsible for the company associated with that church.
A New Company needs a Captain and Lieutenants who should be at least 18 years of age. The aid of younger men should be enlisted under special conditions. Where a junior section is formed, women may be enrolled as lieutenants or Warrant Officers. To be an Officer needs no special gifts but a dedicated Christian commitment. It demands love for Boys, a willingness to prepare and carry through a training programme backed by the desire to lead Boys towards a true Christian faith and understanding. Through this medium men and women have found their finest opportunity for real Christian Service, and from which they have derived deep satisfaction.
Uniformed: Through the framework of drill and uniform the habits of self-discipline, self-control, smartness and teamwork developed in each Boy according to his needs and his capacity.
The Boys’ Brigade requires dedicated leadership. The Officers should be men and women in Brigade who see their Leadership as a natural expression of their Christian conviction. They should be Church members who recognize the Boys Brigade as being the church working with Boys. Those with special skills or interest who find they can give only limited time can give valuable assistance as instructors. The Bridge’s programme provides many opportunities for Boys to develop gifts of leadership.
The Boys’ Brigade is fully inter-denominational, it is the responsibility and right of the church to lay down and control the form of Christian education and instruction for the Boys in its own company, according to the policy and procedure of the church, the church, and not the Brigade decides upon programmes such as Bible Class, Family Church, Junior Church, Sunday School, or any other variation as required. The method of Christian teaching is the prerogative of the church.