Miloš Kříž

* 1956

  • "In 1969 we camped in the Ore Mountains near Český Jiřetín where Kim has his cottage. The closest church was some twenty kilometers far in Litvínov. The mass started at around 8 a.m. and so we got up at 4 a.m. and walked the 20 kms. It was mostly downhill because we camped at the ridges. We took part in the sermon and as a reward then went to eat soup. The non-believers didn't have to join us and were allowed to stay in the camp but as they learned that we were going to a restaurant afterwards, they sacrificed those 20 kilometers to join us for the soup. We didn't walk back, though, we'd catch a bus. It was a pilgrimage of sorts."

  • "We took the oath on Svojsík's laws - the scout book -, the Bible and the Czechoslovak flag. During the Warsaw Pact armies' invasion in 1968, Kim went to rescue the Czechoslovak Radio. A couple people got shot dead there back then. Along with many others, Kim was carrying a Czechoslovak flag. He dipped it in blood of one of the deceased so that it'd serve as a reminder of him sacrificing his life for the motherland. On this flag we then promised our scout loyalty."

  • "We had our scout shirts from which we unpicked all of the badges. Then we had a piece of felt on which we had snap fasteners. Sewn on that were scout symbols: place, name of the club, the scout lily, eventually a ranking, plus linden leaves representing our active years. This was worn on the left side of our shirts and in case of urgency it could have been quickly torn off. We also wore a scarf but anyone could have done that. Though it was brown so it was probably clear we were scouts."

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Scout isn‘t political but it can‘t be apolitical either

Miloš Kříž at scout camp in 1984
Miloš Kříž at scout camp in 1984

Miloš Kříž was born in 1956 in Pardubice. He grew up in a Catholic family; his father was strongly opposed to the communist regime. As a 12-year-old he joined the Catholic scout club No. 43 led by Petr „Kim“ Majšajdr. A year later at the last legally held scout summer camp he took the scout oath. In 1970 scouting was banned and the 43th club went underground where it remained practically up until the Velvet Revolution. In 1971 Miloš Kříž finished an apprenticeship to become a joiner and ever since 1975 along with Jiří Navrátil he led the scout club. They renamed themselves in 1985 and for the following five years operated under the auspices of the newly-founded Czech Association of Environmentalists. After the Velvet Revolution he and Petr Majšajdr and Jiří Navrátil established their own scout center which bears the name of the Mašín brothers.