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The Order of the Arrow has several publications available to help Arrowmen in carrying out the OA program. Some publications are only available through your local lodge or council; contact your lodge adviser or staff adviser if you need a copy. Most publications are available online below. They are revised regularly, so be sure to get the current edition.

Table of Contents

Handbook and Ceremonies

Order of the Arrow Handbook

  •  #34996, 2015 revision
  •  This is the main handbook for OA members. It includes basic information all members should know, and reflects current policies.
  •  Available from the BSA National Supply Division, must be ordered through your local council.
  •  Lenni Lenape Word List Appendix

Ceremony for the Ordeal

  •  #34993A, 2000 revision
  •  This book provides the approved Pre-Ordeal and Ordeal ceremonies for lodges to use.
  •  Available from the BSA National Supply Division, must be ordered through your local council.

Ceremony for the Brotherhood

  •  2014 revision
  •  This is the text and directions for conducting the new Brotherhood Ceremony, which became the only official Brotherhood Ceremony on January 1, 2015. For more information about the reasons for a new Brotherhood Ceremony, click here.
  •  Download this book.
  •  NOTE: This document is protected using Brotherhood Member Safeguard standards. For password information, please see the Safeguarded Material page.

Ceremony for the Vigil Honor

  •  2017 revision
  •  This book provides the approved Vigil ceremony for lodges to use. This book is no longer available from the BSA National Supply Division, and is only available online here.
  •  Download this book.
  •  NOTE: This document is protected using Vigil Member Safeguard standards. For password information, please see the Safeguarded Material page.


Guide for Officers and Advisers

  •  #24-413, 2012 revision
  •  All lodge and chapter officers and advisers should have a copy of this book. It reflects the current policies concerning the organization and administration of the Order of the Arrow Lodge. Topics covered include lodge organization and program, communications, camping promotion, service, membership requirements, unit elections, OA structure, awards, and more.
  •  Download this book.

Guide to Inductions

  •  April 2017 revision
  •  This guide brings together all aspects of the induction process and provides a suggested structure for the inductions committee to follow. It provides the current policies and is filled with information about the inductions process from the unit election, to Call-Out, through the Ordeal, and on to Brotherhood. The 2015 revision includes updates to the unit elections section, and the addition of several new unit-election resources, plus small revisions and updates throughout the document.
  •  See how to download this book.

Field Operations Guide

Chapter Operations Guide

  •  2012 revision
  •  Filled with helpful tools, resources, and much more! The Chapter Operations Guide will help your chapter reach its full potential and deliver a quality program to your members. All chapter officers and advisers should have a copy.
  •  Download this book.

Lodge Adviser's Handbook

  •  July 2012 revision
  •  The Lodge Adviser's Handbook provides helpful tips and pointers for both new and experienced lodge advisers.
  •  Download this book.

Guide for Staff Advisers

  •  August 2013 printing
  •  This guide provides information on the Order of the Arrow for professional Scouters.
  •  Download this book.

Guide to Unit Elections

  •  April 2017 revision
  •  This guide provides information on Order of the Arrow unit elections to both members and non-members. It can be distributed to unit leaders and others who want to know the policies regarding unit elections and how unit elections are conducted.
  •  Download this book.

Lodge Finance Manual

  •  March 2008 printing
  •  The Lodge Finance Manual provides ideas and guidelines for budget building and control, the jobs of lodge members related to lodge finances, financial record keeping, inventory control, financial reports, and money-earning projects.
  •  Download this book.

Supporting Material

Journey to Excellence Guide

  •  March 2016 revision
  •  The Journey to Excellence guide will assist Lodges in understanding the Journey to Excellence program and how best to develop program plans to achieve the goals.
  •  Download this book.

Lodge Community Service Guide

  •  July 2004 printing
  •  This guide provides information on how your lodge can plan, mobilize, and deliver a quality community service project.
  •  Download this book.

Lodge History Resource Guide

  •  May 2017 printing
  •  This guide provides insights and best practices from Scouting historians and contains guidance for tactile and ideological approaches so that you are able to not only do history well, but also, in time, to be able to think like a historian.
  •  Download this book.

Lodge Leadership Development Planning Guide

  •  June 2005 printing
  •  This book provides information on planning and carrying out a good Lodge Leadership Development program, including the implementation of the Lodge Leadership Development committee.
  •  Download this book.

Manual for Producing a "Where to Go Camping Guide"

  •  May 2005 printing
  •  This guide provides information on how your lodge can prepare your own "Where to Go Camping Guide." This manual provides details on the purpose of a guide, typical contents, planning the guide, gathering information, organizing the guide, and much more.
  •  Download this book.

Conclave Best Practices

  •  This guide provides details on the best practices for planning a conclave. This manual is the result of the Conclave Best Practices taskforce, and includes great details and ideas for sections.
  •  Download this book.

The Brotherhood of Cheerful Service: A History of the Order of the Arrow

  •  Third Edition
  •  This book is an enlightening history of the Order of the Arrow. Since its initial printing, it has been nationally recognized as the authoritative source for Order of the Arrow historical facts. Written by Kenneth P. Davis, Ph.D., a member of the National Order of the Arrow Committee, this publication consists of twelve chapters that each focus on a specific phase of Order of the Arrow history, or an aspect of its operations.
  •  Available from the OA Trading Post

A Thing of the Spirit, The Life of E. Urner Goodman

  •  E. Urner Goodman, the founder of the Order of the Arrow; was a trend setting Scouter in the the early days of the movement. This biography of the founder, written by Nelson R. Block, is an excellent source of information on the life of Dr. Goodman, and preserves oral history about Dr. Goodman that might have otherwise been lost.
  •  Available from the OA Trading Post

National Bulletin

The National Bulletin is the official national publication of the Order of the Arrow, Boy Scouts of America. Past editions can be viewed at the National Bulletin page.

Operations Updates

Operations Updates are published as needed to update key leaders on changes in the OA program. Past updates can be viewed on the Operations Updates page.

Strategic Plan

View the Order of the Arrow's strategic plan for 2013-2017, Toward a Second Century of Service, on the Strategic Plan page.

OA Branding Resources

The OA Branding and Style Guide, along with branded PowerPoint and Keynote presentation templates, can be found on the OA Branding Resources page.