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Lds Church Will Continue Boy Scout Program


JAHS

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The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints issued the following statement Wednesday from the Council of the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve Apostles regarding the Church’s relationship with the Boy Scouts of America:
 
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints appreciates the positive contributions Scouting has made over the years to thousands of its young men and boys and to thousands of other youth. As leaders of the Church, we want the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) to succeed in its historic mission to instill leadership skills and high moral standards in youth of all faiths and circumstances, thereby equipping them for greater success in life and valuable service to their country.
 
In the resolution adopted on July 27, 2015, and in subsequent verbal assurances to us, BSA has reiterated that it expects those who sponsor Scouting units (such as the Church) to appoint Scout leaders according to their religious and moral values “in word and deed and who will best inculcate the organization’s values through the Scouting program.” At this time, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints will go forward as a chartering organization of BSA, and as in the past, will appoint Scout leaders and volunteers who uphold and exemplify Church doctrine, values, and standards.
 
With equal concern for the substantial number of youth who live outside the United States and Canada, the Church will continue to evaluate and refine program options that better meet its global needs.

 

 

http://www.deseretnews.com/article/865635368/LDS-Church-will-continue-Boy-Scout-program.html

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https://mormentum.wordpress.com/2015/08/26/young-women-relieved-church-sticking-with-bsa/

 

“All of the high adventure and practical skills boys need to survive in the wilderness are of course very important. But with two sons in Young Men’s, I’ve been very concerned that high moral standards would no longer be a focus if they couldn’t be Boy Scouts anymore. And the civic participation and leadership development inculcated in our young men is just second to none in Boy Scouts. I really feel like it develops them into full human beings.”

“I couldn’t eat for like, a month,” said Krista Bennington, 17, a young woman in Meridian, Idaho. “I can’t think of anything more important for the Youth than Boy Scouts. There’s just so much that boys can learn and do, and in the patrols and camps and leadership meetings I’ve seen my brothers develop really strong bonds with other boys and their leaders. When I heard the Church was thinking about getting out of Scouting, my first thought was, ‘What could they possibly do then? Personal Progress for boys?’ It was awful to even consider.”

 

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"I couldn't believe that we might have been stuck in the Ward building with a bunch of stinky boys for three more weeks out of the month not to mention weekends.  This decision is a great relief to us young women", said Penelope Young of the Utah Valley 347th Stake, 14 years old.

 

:rofl:

 

OK I realized I just spoofed a spoof site...

 

I'm all in favor of the BSA admitting young women prior to Venture's and letting them enjoy the program too.  Just as long as we do some same sex activities to give YM and YW opportunities to socialize in different settings.

 

My youngest daughter hates YW night, due to bullying and lack of interesting activities for her.  She asked to join a Venture Crew at age 14 and we made it happen.

Edited by KevinG
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"I couldn't believe that we might have been stuck in the Ward building with a bunch of stinky boys for three more weeks out of the month not to mention weekends.  This decision is a great relief to us young women", said Penelope Young of the Utah Valley 347th Stake, 14 years old.

 

:rofl:

 

OK I realized I just spoofed a spoof site...

 

I'm all in favor of the BSA admitting young women prior to Venture's and letting them enjoy the program too.  Just as long as we do some same sex activities to give YM and YW opportunities to socialize in different settings.

 

My youngest daughter hates YW night, due to bullying and lack of interesting activities for her.  She asked to join a Venture Crew at age 14 and we made it happen.

Your situation with your daughter sounds very similar to a relative of mine, and one of her friends. They did the exact same thing and ended up joining a venturing crew. They still attend young women's as well.

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I think it would be really great if young women could also have these opportunities.

 

I agree.  The Young Women should adopt many of the same things. 

 

Whenever I have served in Young Men, I have always collaborated with the corresponding Young Women's group.  For example, I will have the deacons cook for the beehives on an open fire in a park somewhere.  Or perhaps we all cook together.  If you're not sure about full-fledged campfire style cooking, do homemade pizzas in an oven and do homemade ice cream (quck and simple recipies all over the web) and watch a movie.  The girls have always loved doing this with the boys in any Ward I've been in.

 

For the older ones, or even all together, get a lively outgoing active believing (and brave) couple in the Ward or Stake to speak to the Youth about the roles of men and women and save time for the youth ask questions.  Those have always been super popular.

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  • 4 weeks later...

It's been a few months since the BSA voted to allow units to appoint leaders according to their own religious standards.

 

I've been wondering about how Scouts for Equality responded to the LDS Church's decsion to stay with scouting, and whether any of the foreboding predictions of impending lawsuits to force troops sponsored by "actively-gay"-exclusive religions to hire gay leaders had come any closer to fruition.

 

Here's a couple items of note from Scouts for Equality's website:

 


SCOUTS FOR EQUALITY RESPONDS TO CHURCH OF JESUS CHRIST OF LATTER-DAY SAINTS’ DECISION TO STAY IN BOY SCOUTS OF AMERICA

 

Washington, D.C. — In response to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ decision to continue its partnership with the Boy Scouts of America, Zach Wahls, co-founder and Executive Director of Scouts for Equality, issued the following statement:
 

“We are heartened by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ decision to continue working with the Boy Scouts of America and to continue offering the program to its young men. We have maintained from the beginning of our campaign that the values and life lessons of Scouting are universal, and we would have been saddened to see hundreds of thousands of youth denied the opportunity to participate in the Boy Scouts. We hope to continue to work to build a stronger and more welcoming Boy Scouts of America with friends and allies across the religious and political spectrum.”

 

 

I also found SFE's report on the return of UUA and Reform Judaism to the BSA to be noteworthy:

 


Following End of Boy Scouts’ Ban on Gay Members, Partners and Supporters Return in Droves

Unitarian Universalist Association and Union for Reform Judaism both signal a return to the Boy Scouts of America, citing work by Scouts for Equality

 

Hundreds of pro-equality supporters have pledged to return to the Boy Scouts of America through Scouts for Equality

 

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Following July’s historic vote by the Boy Scouts of America to end its ban on gay adults, individuals and groups are already pledging to return to the Scouting organization. Two former BSA chartering organizations—the Union for Reform Judaism and the Unitarian Universalist Association—have announced their intention to move forward in re-establishing ties with the Boy Scouts, citing the work of Scouts for Equality. Both the URJ and the UUA had severed from the Boy Scouts of America because of the BSA’s ban on gay members. In addition, Scouts for Equality reported that more than 250 people had pledged online to return to the Boy Scouts.

 

“I’m incredibly excited about the response we’ve seen so far,” said Zach Wahls, an Eagle Scout and the Executive Director of Scouts for Equality. “We are planning to work with our members and partners to charter 1,000 new Boy Scout units in the next twenty-four months. With both the UUA and URJ back, it’s clear we’re off to a great start.”

 

Scouts for Equality has been a leading voice in the campaign for an end to discrimination in the Boy Scouts of America. Following the end of the BSA’s blanket ban on gay adults, the organization rededicated itself to building a stronger, more inclusive BSA. Scouts for Equality is currently working to certify currently existing units that are inclusive, distribute a strong anti-bullying program, and to charter new, fully inclusive Scout units.

 

In further searches online, I don't see any indications of any impending lawsuits attempting to force all unites to allow gay leaders, including the high profile threats that had previously been thrown out here on the board... 

 

Has anyone heard of any, as of yet?

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By the way, this past summer the BSA commissioned the following report, THE EFFECT OF CHANGES IN ADULT LEADER STANDARD ON RELIGIOUS CHARTERED ORGANIZATIONS, through the D.C.-based law firm of Hughes Hubbard & Reed LLP.  It thoroughly examines the issues about whether or not either the BSA or a religion sponsoring a troop could ever be successfully sued for the BSA's now-current policy allowing religiously-based troops to set their own leadership standards.  I wish I had come across it during all the previous discussion--it really puts to rest many of the "sky is falling!" claims that were previously made about potential litigation, and how the BSA made the wisest legal choice in undertaking it's current policy by citing actual legal precident for each of the points it makes.  It's well worth the read.

 

Headings include:

 

The Role of Chartered Organizations Selecting Leaders (pg 2)

 

Summary of Religious Chartered Organization Choice (pg 3)

 

Religious Chartered Organization Choice in Scouting (pgs 3-4)

 

We understand that some religious organizations are concerned that if they exclude homosexuals from leadership in Scouting units that they charter after the BSA changes its policy they will be vulnerable to lawsuits from the potential leaders they exclude. Those concerns should be allayed by the legal defenses that religious organizations have under place of public accommodation statutes and the First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States.

 

A.  Most, if not all, Place of Public Accmodation Laws Exempt Religious Organizations or Private Clubs (pgs 4-5)

 

B. Religious Chartered Organizations Have an Expressive Association Defense Under the First Ammendment (pgs 5-8 )

 

C.  Religious Chartered Organizations Have Establishment Clause and Free Exercise Defenses Under the First Ammendment (pgs 8-11)

 

D. The Risks of Legal Action Against Religious Chartered Organizations (pgs 11-14)

 

Subheadings here include:

 

1. Hypothetical lawsuit against the BSA or a religious chartered organization to compel accepting a homosexual adult leader

 

2. Hypothetical lawsuit against the BSA to terminate a relationship with a religious chartered organization that does not include homosexual adults.

 

The concluding paragraphs state,

 


The BSA’s right to grant charters to religious organizations is strongly protected under the law. The BSA has a strong legal defense that it cannot be enjoined or prevented from granting a charter to a religious organization that excluded homosexual adult leaders based on the organization’s religious beliefs. A lawsuit seeking to enjoin the BSA would be unlikely to proceed past the earliest stages and a motion to dismiss. The BSA has the right under the First Amendment to associate with its religious chartered organizations and to deliver the Scouting program through a diverse collection of chartered organizations of the BSA’s choosing. Like the newspapers, cable operators, or parades discussed in Hurley, the First Amendment protects the right of a private organization to combine “multifarious voices” into a “compilation of speech generated” by others.50 In Hurley, “[t]he selection of contingents to make a parade” was entitled to First Amendment protection from the state place of public accommodation laws.51 Here, the BSA has a constitutionally protected right to combine the multifarious voices from its chartered organizations—including its religious chartered organizations—into acompilation of groups that deliver Scouting values along with the chartered organizations’ distinct values.52 In spite of all of this, in the unlikely event that the BSA faced an injunction against associating with certain religious organizations, it would not have avoided that fate by maintaining its own policy that excluded homosexuals from adult leadership positions.

 

Religious organizations already prosper in a legal environment in which their affiliates that are committed to their faith obligations also participate in nonprofits that do not share those values. For example, Brigham Young University, Catholic University of America, Baylor University, and the faiths with which these schools are affiliated53 do not condone homosexual conduct. The law schools at Brigham Young University, Catholic University of America, and Baylor University are accredited by the Association of American Law Schools (“AALS”) and the American Bar Association (“ABA”). The sports teams at Brigham Young University, Catholic University of America, and Baylor University are accredited by the National Collegiate Athletic Association (“NCAA”). Each of these accrediting organizations is a nonprofit organization. Each of these accrediting organizations has a policy that either promotes diversity that includes sexual orientation or prohibits discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.54 Each of these accrediting organizations also has, as a matter of policy or practice, an exception for religious schools.

 

Our research has shown no lawsuit or legal action initiated by a third party against any of these accrediting organizations seeking to change the school’s religious principles or remove the school from the accrediting organization based on alleged discrimination. The greater challenge is likely to come from the accrediting organizations themselves, which occasionally exert pressure on member schools. By contrast, the BSA would not seek to exert pressure on any religious chartered organization. Rather, the BSA will help safeguard the religious chartered organizations by defending their protected expression and religious liberties in connection with the selection of unit leaders.

Edited by Daniel2
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By the way, this past summer the BSA commissioned the following report, THE EFFECT OF CHANGES IN ADULT LEADER STANDARD ON RELIGIOUS CHARTERED ORGANIZATIONS, through the D.C.-based law firm of Hughes Hubbard & Reed LLP.  It thoroughly examines the issues about whether or not either the BSA or a religion sponsoring a troop could ever be successfully sued for the BSA's now-current policy allowing religiously-based troops to set their own leadership standards.  I wish I had come across it during all the previous discussion--it really puts to rest many of the "sky is falling!" claims that were previously made about potential litigation, and how the BSA made the wisest legal choice in undertaking it's current policy by citing actual legal precident for each of the points it makes.  It's well worth the read.

 

 

 

Thanks for the link. I've seen no indication that the so-called "juggernaut" wants to decide who gets to lead specific scout troops, much less that they'd be successful if they were to sue for such a thing.  It's been fascinating to watch the anti-juggernauts insist that such a push is destined to happen.

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Our council is quietly telling non-traditional units (those without a chartered organization or a business as a CO) to affiliate themselves with a church or social organization or they will not recharter.  This is due primarily to liability.

 

Our church sponsored units are not returning in "droves" (And I'd love to see the numbers behind that headline for the UUA and URJ story).  The numbers overall are declining about as fast as they have since 1999, between 75-100k per year.  The 2013 decision seems to have roughly doubled that.   Total membership Cubs, Scouts, and Venture equals just over 2,300,000.  It is too early to see what the long term impact of the decision will be.

 

Mind you I'm one who is grateful the LDS church is keeping the BSA as an activity program.

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[From Mr. Wahls' statement, quoted by Daniel, above:] ... [W]we would have been saddened to see hundreds of thousands of youth denied the opportunity to participate in the Boy Scouts. 

 

Disingenuous smarm. <_<

 

Nothing prevents an LDS Scout from joining a unit not sponsored by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

 

Or, perhaps I am underestimating the Power of the Force of the Evil Empire. :morg:

Edited by Kenngo1969
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Went for my temple recommend interview the other day with the Stake Presidency. When he asked me if I affiliate with any group or individual whose teachings or practices are contrary to the Church. I responded, "Boy Scouts?"  

He got a good laugh out of it.

 

Ouch!

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At this time, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints will go forward as a chartering organization of BSA, and as in the past, will appoint Scout leaders and volunteers who uphold and exemplify Church doctrine, values, and standards.

 

 

The article stated, "The church accepts gay Scouts in its troops. Latter-day Saints who are gay

may serve in church assignments such as Scout leadership as long as they live the faith's

standards, which proscribe same-sex marriage or acting on same-sex attraction."

 

Does this gay Scout also have to refrain from acting on same-sex attraction outside of his role

of a Scout (like at home or his cottage when he is not doing any Scouting activities) or does the

church's acceptance only stipulate to the time he is performing Scouting-related activities?

 

"In the resolution adopted on July 27, 2015, and in subsequent verbal assurances to us, BSA has

reiterated that it expects those who sponsor Scouting units (such as the church) to appoint Scout

leaders according to their religious and moral values 'in word and deed and who will best inculcate

the organization’s values through the Scouting program."

 

Would the LDS Church be okay with the BSA allowing the sponsoring of Scouting units from non-
religious groups who don't see any moral issues with homosexuality inside or outside the context of
being a Scout leader?
 

Thanks,

Jim

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The article stated, "The church accepts gay Scouts in its troops. Latter-day Saints who are gay

may serve in church assignments such as Scout leadership as long as they live the faith's

standards, which proscribe same-sex marriage or acting on same-sex attraction."

 

Does this gay Scout also have to refrain from acting on same-sex attraction outside of his role

of a Scout (like at home or his cottage when he is not doing any Scouting activities) or does the

church's acceptance only stipulate to the time he is performing Scouting-related activities?

 

"In the resolution adopted on July 27, 2015, and in subsequent verbal assurances to us, BSA has

reiterated that it expects those who sponsor Scouting units (such as the church) to appoint Scout

leaders according to their religious and moral values 'in word and deed and who will best inculcate

the organization’s values through the Scouting program."

 

Would the LDS Church be okay with the BSA allowing the sponsoring of Scouting units from non-
religious groups who don't see any moral issues with homosexuality inside or outside the context of
being a Scout leader?
 

Thanks,

Jim

As long as the member is assigned the position of scout leader he has to refrain from acting on same-sex attraction. If he wants to remain a church member in good standing he must also refrain whether he is a scout leader ot not, otherwise he could lose his membership.

 

Other scout troops can do what they want, but I doubt any LDS boy would be a member of such a troop unless they had no other choice.

Edited by JAHS
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