I love scouting. All four of my sons are Eagle Scouts. However, having lived in
many parts of the country and overseas as a military spouse, in none of the
wards I have been in have I seen a successfully implemented Varsity or Venture
program. My observation is that this is because of a combination of complacency
by the parents and their sons and a lack of understanding or willingness to
implement the program by the called leaders. Broadly speaking, those programs
fail, just as the First Presidency announcement stated. The Varsity program in
my current ward is run by very great and engaged brethren and is the most
successful I've seen. I hope that what comes next will engender better
participation, but I have little confidence that it will unless the parents of
the young men actively prioritize it for their sons and participate with them.
The fatal flaw when any church program fails for our youth is parents who do
not participate and look upon the program as free child care for their children
instead of a way for them to engage with their children and strengthen their
I feel this is a great decision. Another viewpoint to consider. My oldest son
loved cub scouts and completed his Arrow of Light. He really wanted to move on
in the scouting program, however, we lived in a very rural area of Maine. Our
drive to the church was an hour one way. As far as I know there was not a
scouting program even set up and I am not even sure if there was a young
men/women's program because our ward was so spread out mileage wise. With
a busy family of five children, involvement in extracurricular activities, and
faithfully holding family home evening every week and that type of thing, there
was no way that there would have been time to take two hours on a weeknight
during the school year to go to the church for scouting, even if there was a
scouting program going on. The only choice was to enroll him in a local
scouting program, unfortunately, the local scouting program did not adhere to
the values that we, as LDS believe, ie, swimming on Sunday's and many other
activities on the Sabbath. So, our choice was no scouting beyond Cub Scouts.
Was he affected by not participating in the scouting program? He went on to
serve a faithful mission.
The statement read in part, "young men ages 14-18 are not being served well
by the Varsity or Venturing programs, which have historically been difficult to
implement within the church."For 19 recent years in nearly every
ward I have served . . . the Varsity, Venture, and Explorer programs thrived
because leaders had a burning desire to learn their duty and to carry it out.
When I read of HS teens not being served by the LDS scouting programs and
"historically" the LDS scouting program "has been difficult to
implement within the church", this was never the case in the wards I served.
Call me naÏve, but those who acquire a prayerful inspired 2-year academic
field-tested understanding, it does not take long to see it as the most
perfected vision of Scouting ever to be revealed that "attracts" full
uniform teens from high schools when leaders implement it . Example I witnessed
in one ward: Five age-separated units/patrols of 35 young men in head to toe
uniforms (summer, winter, and dress) in opening Wednesday ceremonies, plus
monthly campouts/activities planned a year ahead. From the five units of 35,
they "attracted" another 15 non-members. Build it right and they will
I have worked in many the stages of the scouting program from Cub Scouts to
Varsity scouts for 30+ years. I have seen first hand the blessings of the
scouting program. It helped my son prepare for his mission better than Duty to
God or Mission Preparation Classes. It helped him prepare for College better
than Duty to God. I have seen missionary opportunities that will now be lost.
I have former scouts that have been helped in their careers and the military
because of receiving their Eagle. Very few scouts get their Eagle by age 14,
even though the LDS Church will register older scouts that want to continue in
scouting it will be much harder for boys to achieve rank advancement. The
scouting program works if it is done right. Changing the program will not change
the leaders. The Leaders make programs work for their boys. The young men I
have talked to who have reviewed the new program are not excited at all. There
is so much good that can not be matched by the new program. My heart is so sad.
TJulien - "This is a sad day for the church and a sad day for thousands of
boys and young men that will be denied the opportunity that their fathers,
grandfathers, and other previous generations have had for character, skill and
spiritual development in a structured and positive environment."The YM will not be denied opportunities...the church's new program will
provide the YM with all the same things scouting has provided---building
character, skills, spiritual development, etc.,---and much more. Our Prophet
and the brethren have been inspired of the Lord to make these changes/implement
a new and much better program because the Lord knows better than any of us what
the YM need as well as how that can best be accomplished.
I'm glad to see this happen as a former Eagle Scout & member of the
Brotherhood of the Arrow. Scouting has been victimized by leadership that has
sacrificed integrity for what is considered popular. It has been subject to the
intense replacement & infiltration of leadership by leftist who see it as a
necessity that they infiltrate & control social institutions which defy
their personal views & beliefs. This is sinister, & I am glad &
proud to remove it's support for an organization which has repeatedly shown
it's willingness to depart from its core principles to cater. That does
not make strong men, good scouts, or individuals of moral strength &
When I suddenly and unexpectedly became a single mother with 4 children, scouts
and sports became collateral damage. I could no longer afford scout camp and my
oldest son wasn't able to earn all of the merit badges and advancements he
needed to become an Eagle, we were in survival mode. Even though he was the only
young man in our ward to serve a mission (for a while out of 9 potential) his MP
gave him grief and questioned his ability to work in a very primitive area of
the mission. He eventually did successfully.As a parent I always
appreciated others helping him develop into a man of good character; especially
when his father chose not to finish his obligation. I'm interested to see
what the church will be inspired to do, especially with sons from so many single
parent families in need of guidance.
My family is so thrilled with the decision to not move forward with the scouting
program. The Aaronic Priesthood wasn't emphasized very much here. My boys
were over scouts many years ago. It was a divine decision solely on the reasons
stated by the brethren. Scouting simply didn't benefit the YM anymore.
The only words I can think of are "Madrasa training for the YM".
Very disappointing! I'm a convert and have been a cub scout leader! I feel
like if the scouting program is failing within the church it's because of
poor leadership! When we were leaders, we witnessed scout masters and other
leaders just barely showing up and just barely going through the motions! We
didn't want this calling but took it and took it seriously! All our boys
got all their badges that were required to move on to the next level! I feel
like you get out of it what you put into it! Sure you may have some boys that
may fall away but what about the boys that achieve and have goals? Isn't it
worth it just for them? I feel like the church is going against everything they
teaching are basically giving up on the program instead of finding solutions!
The boys are the losers in this decision. Don't blame it on the boys in the
statement, it wasn't their fault. It was the load of complainers called
"Leaders" that never read the Program to begin with. And it was from the
Stake level down. And to all the "Duty to God" callers out there
consider this, "On my honor...do my Duty to God..." Yep there it is! How
about that. The organizations mission is to "Help Young People make Moral
and Ethical Choices throughout their lifetime by instilling in them the values
found in the Scout Oath and Law." I watched this thing first hand take
failing YM Programs and helped them succeed simply by reading and acting on the
manual. I'm disappointed in the many failed leaders out there who
complained at Scout Training Meetings, in private after they were called and
Stake President who hated Scouting and let it be known. To those, you never knew
what you had. They never took the time to read the book either and it's
loaded with great activities and plenty of Leadership opportunity that would
change lives. But I digress, because of poor leader commitment, this was never
going to work but maybe Church Leadership can't say that.
As noted by some, many boys just don't fit into the scouting mold, and
therefore are miserable attending scouting activities. Have to go to stay
active I suppose. This is the case for many uninterested boys and adult leaders
in church units. I am one of those miserable scout leaders to be honest.
Probably why some LDS troops don't function as well. The last official
scout camp I attended included a merit badge counselor who wore a diaper like
loin cloth barely covering himself. No this is not Yester- Year's BSA. Of
course this is liberal Colorado, where professional nut cases have infiltrated
the organization. When our Stake President heard about this, he refused to let
our troops attend any more official organized scout camps. Once again I have
been called to scouts. I was praying when I moved some other calling would find
me. But the ward is thin. So doing the best I can and trying to support the
Bishop and the church. Finally, when I listen to the scout oath these days I
have a hard time keeping a straight face when they say keep myself "Morally
Straight". Not sure what this means anymore. Time to drop the whole thing
in my mind.
after reading some of these ridiculous comments. there's nothing
wrong with the Boy Scout program just untrained leadersWhen there are
people accepting the callings just because they were asked from the bishop and
they said yes whatever they want to do it or not and they have no motivation to
get training that is what makes a bad Scout program and I have seen this
firsthand as a scout and scoutmaster so if you think there is an issue with the
scout program you need to look at your leaders are they doing this because they
want to or because they feel they have to. As for the cost of Boy Scouts if
you're going to start telling up the cost you better start looking at how
much sports and other after-school activities cost
I have been involved in Scouting as a young man, having earned the rank of Eagle
Scout,On My Honor, and Duty to God. I also went thru the Exploring program in
the late 70's. Much of the skills that I have developed over the years I
first learned in Scouting. Where else can a young man learn so much but by
working on merit badges and participating in organized activities. Today I
serve as an Eagle Scout Board reviewer for the local district and serve as an
Archery Merit Badge Counselor. I developed a love for Archery and the outdoors
because of Scouting. The most important thing I learned from Scouting and MIA
is leadership and Service. BOTH Programs go hand in hand - compliment each
other. I SUSTAIN our Church Leaders but I will continue to Support the BSA -
because of the young men I am ultimately serving.
Davea0511 has it right - our local scout office routinely loses stuff, and
can't seem to complete even the most basic paperwork. It's 2017, and
yet their website is from the dark ages, and nothing is computerized. With all
the money they rake in, you'd think they'd be able to afford a decent
Best news I've heard all year! The BSA is inefficient, unorganized, and
generally clueless. As a den leader and scoutmaster's wife for the last 4
years, scouting has been nothing but a money hole and a time zapper for already
stressed-out families.First you have to outfit your scout, $120+ if
bought at the scout store. Then, there's FOS. Then, pay to support the
ward troop. Gasoline is out-of-pocket. You're pressured to attend the
national jamboree, at $3000 PER SCOUT (what I retorted to the stake guy
can't be printed here). Then, each kid pays to attend ward scout camp -
it's $3200 to send a small ward group to a run-down, poorly managed BSA
facility that calls a single hot pocket "dinner." These are just family
expenses - the ward expense of registration, badges and other useless baubles,
are thousands of dollars per year. The costs are obscene. And the
program isn't all that.... I can teach my sons and their friends to be
honest and kind myself, FOR FREE. I can even teach them how to build a fire
while I'm at it (never met an eagle scout I couldn't out-fire..). Ah,
the BSA - taking fathers out of the home at all the wrong moments since 1913....
Your boys are at greater risk from heterosexual scout leaders than they ever
were from gay leaders.Go figure.
Every scouting office we've worked with frequently looses the merit badge
blue cards that scouts hand in, which then don't get entered in the
computer (resulting in a nightmare of having to get things signed off again
before the next rank advancement). I wonder how many 1000's of scouts gave
up on their eagle from the frustration of having to rejump though hoops they
already did. Thank heavens that's over. Maybe going forward young men
will actually get credit the first time for what they get done.
Many LDS women will see this as a Mother's Day gift that they appreciate
more than any flower they ever received!
HAPPY DAYS !
To "Neanderthal" the council staff is different than the
Scoutmasters.The council staff run the Camps and run Scoutmaster
training, run the local Scout Shop, work with various outreach programs, and do
things ABOVE the Scoutmaster level.The fees for the camps are
indirectly subsidized by the Council. For instance, Camp Maple Dell has a lodge
that is used nearly year round. The lodge was build using Council funds because
of its intended purpose. Plus, many of the improvements that are done at the
Scout Camp are made possible by the donations from FoS. The Camp fees that the
boys pay are not sufficient to pay for everything at camp. For example the $300
per boy is entirely insufficient to pay for the staff and upkeep of a large
summer camp. Similar camps elsewhere cost anywhere from $500 to $1000.In the case of the BSA, the donations stay at the level they are donated at.
Money does not go up and down the system to pay salaries or overhead.
@RedShirtCalTech:"To 'Neanderthal' the council uses
the money for their staff..."And what does the staff do? From
what I've observed, the local scout master does all the work... camp-outs,
weekly scout meetings, Court of Honors, etc. Why doesn't the staff do
volunteer work like scout masters?'...and for the seasonal
staff at the Scout Camps, and to also pay for the maintenance and development of
their camps."The boys pay a fee to go to the camps, which is
supposed to cover that."The individual donations to the National
BSA are SEPARATE from the FoS donations."Money is fungible...
did I day?@blueskies:"Neanderthal, Friends of
Scouting funds stay within local councils to help with expenses...not to pad the
pockets of national BSA leaders/employees."Once again, money is
To "Neanderthal " the council uses the money for their staff and for the
seasonal staff at the Scout Camps, and to also pay for the maintenance and
development of their camps.The individual donations to the National
BSA are SEPARATE from the FoS donations.Assuming you really live in
Springville, that would put you in the National Parks Council. On their web
page is an article titled "Scout Money: Where It Comes From, How It’s
Spent". That will answer you questions about Friends of Scouting and where
the money is spent.
Neanderthal, Friends of Scouting funds stay within local councils to help with
expenses...not to pad the pockets of national BSA leaders/employees.
@Slammer:"Neanderthal: As your handle implies, you don't
understand Scouting funds flow."I'll come visit you in the
'Slammer' and explain further. In the mean time..."Not one penny of FOS goes to National. All FOS funds are used within your
council."And what does the council use it for? Not one red cent
funds scouts at the local troop level."National's budget is
largely funded by National's earnings on it's bank account (endowment)
and by donations, corporate and individual."Individual
donations? That's what I'm saying... individual donations via
'Friends of Scouting.' Furthermore, money is fungible. If
you're unfamiliar with the term, look it up ."I'm
sorry, but you've had the wrong paradigm."But I have the
correct picture of national BS leadership compensation. Try Googling.
Here's what I got... 'The fifth highest-paid charity CEO in America
was... chief scout executive with the Boy Scouts of America National Council,
according to a new study by nonprofit watchdog Charity Navigator. Compensation:
The old Duty to God program was interlinked with SCOUTING activities and most of
the boys attained their DTG certificates, with the "New" DTG program it
appears not so much!There was always a high correlation between attaining
Eagle Scout and serving a mission.Yeah, sometimes the older boys had to be
"badgered " into going to BSA programs like mountain man , but always
ended up having a great time and were eager to go the next year.Long term
, dedicated , trained leaders could have made a difference, which is / was the
churches policy ALWAYS, but not embraced by local leaders in most wards and
stakes. Have to wait and see how it plays out in the future.Thanks
BSA, best of luck in the future.
Honestly, I think it's about time. I always thought it was so unfair how
the vast majority of money, effort, and celebratory events went to boys, leaving
young women ignored. Boys got regular campouts, events, endless mentors for
merit badges, huge courts of honor, etc. Meanwhile, girls work super hard for
what used to at least be pretty pendants. Then we lost even that and were
demoted to stickers. Stickers!!! Like we're in primary. But nope, boys kept
getting everything.The worst part, though, was watching as teenage boys
were almost completely ignored as far as true spiritual teaching is concerned.
Duty to God was there, sure, but that was never the main focus. Nope, for boys,
learning knots was more important. Teenage years are pivotal and that's
when they need instruction that focuses primarily on being the best, most
worthy, most righteous man they can be, rather than focused mostly on cooking
over a campfire. To people who complain about losing archery, et al, ask
yourself: what's the main point of church? It's not there to teach
wilderness survival. Spiritual survival is far more important and that's
where the time, money, and effort should be spent!So yeah. About time.
I am an eagle scout and served as a southeastern for 15 years and have been on
the scout committee for 45 years, and I was always disappointed in the great
costs for scouting. The uniform cost more than most boys I have worked with
could afford. Friends of scouting puts a financial burden on many. Just the
cost of supporting the scouting program justifies the decision to put the
finances where it will be more cost effective.
I suggest many/most of you should go to the church's site for the YM
program. It exists today and has many recommendations for activities that are
not far from what we did for scouts. They recommend that YM meet at least once
a month and still carry out two to three campouts a year along with something
similar to a high-adventure activity. There is also a suggestion that these YM
do more activities with the YW.As YM president in our ward, we
recently planned a service project to clean up a property raved by fire the
previous summer. In addition to that, we asked the property owner if we could
shoot clays after the service was performed. The YW heard about this activity
and asked if they could join us. The YM went up Friday evening and camped and
the YW and their leaders came up on Saturday and we had an amazing time
performing service and shooting shotguns. I KNOW this will be an experience
each YM and YW will always remember and we did it all outside of scouting. You
don't need the scouting program to have fantastic activities and teach
skills, morals, and character.
Well, it's a good start but it seems the Church still struggles to get its
act together fully and get things done without having to do them in piecemeal.
If it's going to drop the BSA, then drop it across the board! This tells
me they are still are not ready with the program they've been working on
for over 5 years now. The BSA has been morally bankrupt, greedy, and corrupt
for years now and should have no place in the LDS Church.
I find the suggestion that serving a mission outside the US is a higher honor
extremely offensive and wrongheaded. Multiple members of the 12 served their
missions in the US so it is just plain stupid.I think this is a
great move. I never had a chance to get my Eagle because my dysfunctional
11-year-scouts organization made if impossible to get my first class till I was
13. It would have been nice to not hav ed gad people hounding me at 16 about
eagle.I also have to say I hated scout camp because the merit badge
class time too away from fun activities.One reaction of mine is I
hope th u soon allows a structure of,more combined yw/ym activities athat each
higher age group.
That's the first shoe to hit the floor. May the next one soon follow.
I hope the new program will be in conjunction with the YW's program and not
apart. We certainly don't separate the sexes in our schools. I don't
separate our children at home according to sex. We do things together. Nothing
anywhere implies that it is important to separate the sexes, yet we do it, year
after year. It is an idiotic way to let youth grow up and it creates a learned
divide that is forever embedded, FOREVER EMBEDDED!
Up here in Canada, most Stakes have opted out of Scouting altogether. The cost
is huge. At least $200 bare minimum to register 1 Scout. SLC will cover half
of that, usually the Ward covers the rest. Then you have the fees to
participate in a Scout camp or Kub Kar Rally. The Ward has to pick up those
costs and church policy prevents most fundraising. On top of that
the process for a leader becoming complaint with the Scouting rules (which they
must do before they can actually be at a Scout meeting as a leader) takes
months. If you want a new Akela for September you better call them in June and
get things underway.It could work if you treated Scouting callings
like being a Bishop and kept them there for 5 years at a time, but that
isn't how it usually goes. I expect in time the church will pull out of
LDS Scouts in my area (Washington State) have gone to church camps more than
scout camps anyway. LDS camp properties have served a good purpose up here even
for YW. I am sure the same can be said for Utah and other areas?Let's face it. Scout leader callings in a ward is like a revolving door.
When you are released from a YM calling, you are also released as a scout
leader. Should never be that way. Need diehard scouters that serve for years.
Not just one or two. And that has been a big problem.That problem
has been reduced as of today.
Slammer wrote:"- 90%+ of Eagle Scouts served a full time mission to
completion- 30 % of non-Eagles served a full time mission. "Would it be unkind to point out that correlation is not causation? I bet
there are many contributing factors to earning an Eagle as well as serving a
mission. Good parenting is one. LDS boys will serve missions in
the same numbers without BSA as they did with BSA. There is a program for young
men and we have had it for years. It is called the Aaronic Priesthood.
Raising our children is our responsibility alone. The LDS Church is there only
to assist. This is doctrine. It seems too many forget this and expect others
to teach their children correct principles.We deliberately chose to
have our boys go through the Cub Scout program only and to emphasize the
importance of completing their Duty to God. Our experience has shown that
leaders give little importance to it though. But again we don't rely on
others to do what's needed for our children.
The church has just killed a program that has already been dead for a long time.
It's not just a matter of the program not working, boys over 14 just lose
interest in Scouting. I'm an Eagle and have been a leader for many years.
While there are many things I love about Scouting, it's hard to implement
in smaller wards (and even larger ones) and frankly isn't done anywhere
outside the US. It's time for the Church to have a focused
program and more structure for the Young Men- like the Young Women have had for
several decades. Young Men need to be better prepared for life and need skills
to run their household, learn to respect women and girls, get an education, and
prepare spiritually for what lies ahead. I'm looking forward to what the
Church has in store.
As a former YM Pres. I wish this would have been axed years ago. Older boys are
so tough to get to youth activities hopefully this helps. Wish the church would
part ways entirely with scouting. I'd love to take my boys to a scouting
program independent of the church. I think it would help the scouts and the
church if they did separate. Scouts would be able to have kids who are
interested in scouting instead of kids who are forced to go. Plus as a parent I
wouldn't feel obligated by my faith to take my sons to the activity program
my faith supports. Sometimes it just feels like more church, more church
culture, more commitment. Would love to be an outsider in a scouting program.
Hooray for the Young Men!! Excited to see what comes next and how
this plays out with my 13 y/o whose getting his eagle this year.
Slammer-We have 60 YM in our ward. According to you that means 6600
dollars from the Boy Scouts. Plus their YM budget.We have 53 YW in
our ward. They get 1500 dollars from the ward budget.I want the
girls to have every experience the boys have. We have just as many YW going on
missions as YM. They participate in personal progress and it's not just
about sitting around and sharing feelings and crying. Our girls camps have been
adventurous, but they could be so much more with equal funding.I am
glad the church pulled out of BSA. Now perhaps the YM and YW can be treated the
same. And for all those who love scouting, feel free to have your sons, and
apparently daughters now, participate.
It's a sad day. The reason the Varsity and Venturing programs don't
work is entirely on the shoulders of the leaders. Little or no effort put into
the programs. My son achieved Eagle right before age 14 thankfully, as there was
no scouting effort put in after, as a result his 3 non-member friends never
attained Eagle Scout are Life Scouts. At least the boys can stay in the Troop to
get Eagle if they wish.
I understand the decision to separate from the BSA national organization for
cost, as well as the increasing gaps in both organizations values and practices.
This is a challenge and opportunity for the Saints. If we want to continue to
raise "Prepared" young men then the brethren (you and me - not the
General Authorities) need to step up and provide those opportunities. For those who applaud this separation, are you prepared to provide leadership
lessons, camp-outs, fishing, archery, computer instruction, bugling, hiking,
physical fitness, swimming, first aid, personal finance, and the 200 other
subjects our boys can benefit from? Or will your ward youth program become
another extra Sunday school lesson by an hour of basketball?I've been a BSA adult volunteer for 28 years and LDS church member for
almost 30 years. My 3 sons are all Eagles. I've seen the good, bad, and
different types of LDS troops in 5 different states from Utah to Georgia. In my
experience the quality of a YM/Scout program is directly related to the
engagement and training of the leaders.
"Be fair" said, "I don't know of any boys who went camping
monthly (regardless of weather) because their parents "hounded" them to
go with the troop. They went camping because they wanted to go."In my son's case, I can't count the number of times leaders and
other young men in our ward in the southern part of the Salt Lake Valley have
tried to persuade him to go camping. And, given the way young men are
otherwise, I find it extremely hard to believe the concerted effort from them
came of their own doing without direction from their leaders. And while I
appreciate they are well-meaning, it's unfortunately a fact that because
the Church has supported Scouting, some of these leaders very definitely equate
participating in Scouting activities with righteousness. But the reality is
that my son goes to church every Sunday, is diligent in his duties, is attentive
in class (both at Church and Seminary), and generally has a more grounded
understanding of the Gospel than others in the ward. And, frankly, the lessons
he has learned through sports and music are preparing him at least as well, and
probably better, for life than Scouting is doing for his peers.
Neanderthal:As your handle implies, you don't understand Scouting
funds flow. Not one penny of FOS goes to National. All FOS funds are used within
your council. National's budget is largely funded by
National's earnings on it's bank account (endowment) and by donations,
corporate and individual. I'm sorry, but you've had the
Many have seen this day coming and several are celebrating, others whining,
blamming the POTUS, mud-slinging, name-calling, you name it - it is here.
Diversity nothing more than a buzz word than believe me and accept the left or
you are wrong.I have been in scouting for a vast majority of my
life, excluding my mission, and the last 3 years - I pretty much have done
scouting. I went to Wood Badge and completed my tickets and was beaded.I have 2 sons, with Autism, that are Eagle Scouts. They have been
ridiculed, hated, bullied, biased leaders, among other things, yet they did not
let it stop them. They finally got a Leader who did not put up with it. He
believed in training and made sure anyone that was called was trained. He
encouraged me and I went through training and believe in training. He was able
to run a successful Varsity program.Today, 14-18 programs are not
being ran as outlined by the church at several wards. Many leaders, I feel, do
not understand the programs. Several do not go through the training offered, as
such, the young men suffer, or those who want the program.The
Leaders have been preparing for this day. It is always tough to say good bye.
This really is not a big change. If you look at the suggested
activies in the new program most of the activities suggested under the new
program could also have been done under the Varsity Scouting program. The
Varsity Scout program features include numerous program features across five
fields of emphasis including service, personal development, sports, etc. Scouting has a specific mission to help instill the ideals and values in
the scout oath and law in youth using specific methods that have proven
effective over a hundred years. Ideally, BSA has been youth lead. And any
praise worthy activity could have been planned and carried out. The biggest
problem is a lack of understanding and a willingness of local leaders to learn
and do their duty. Local leaders and youth have not participated. As a church
spokesman said on KSL, (paraphrase) ...It is like having a really awesome pair
of running shoes and never putting them on or trying them out. The
church has come up with its own program, it will save on cost of registering
180,000 youth who were not truly participating anyway. And it is pre-customized.
But I believe it will be better.
@windsor:"Bet nobody saw this configuration coming. I
didn't."I did. Months ago, I wrote to the LDS Church
president complaining about the high salaries of the national leaders... and
stated, for that reason, I would no longer donate to 'Friends of
Scouting.'The national scout leaders had a good thing going to
line their pockets. Every year the boys were required to visit each home in the
area (Ward) asking for donations and you'd be frowned upon if you
didn't give generously. Most of the donations don't go for scouting.
It went for high salaries of the national leaders.
Leaving the Boy Scouts increases the peculiar nature of the Mormon Church.
Also, not sure whether any replacement program will be better for our boys.
With the exception of encouraging women to serve missions, other recently
installed Church programs haven't been anything to write home about.
Yay! No more Friends of Scouting campaigns!
@Open Minded Mormon "Duty to God" means NOTHING on a job
resume."Eagle Scout" says a lot.Don't be so quick
to use such universal language in your statements. I know several local boys
who have been hired precisely because of the former being on their resume.
Both these denote prior practice is making a commitment to a group purpose, read
company charter-mission statement, and can be the foot in the door with certain
Granny suggests my comment regarding the church using the scouting movement as
an indoctrination tool, in exchange apparently for financial support, is pretty
low. Fair enough, if that's how you feel. But when my son
started in the scouting movement here that's exactly how it appeared to me.
That is how I feel.
Hutterite and Granny No where did the article say that the LDS Church would
deny the youth from participating in Boy Scouts programs, just that would no
longer sponsor them. What is lost here is the great support the LDS Church has
given the BSA over decades of working together. The BSA was in a no win
situation because of the LGBT, who only care about their agenda. As for the
church, I am amazed that they stayed with the BSA as long as they have. The
bottom line here is that any boys who want to be in the BSA programs still can,
it just will not be with the massive financial support the church used to
While I agree Varsity and Venturing aren't effective, partly due to
complexity, partly due to lack of "share of mind" with 14-18 y.o. YM,
partly due to lack of investment by leaders - let's not throw out the good
Scouting does in a rush to end all Church-sponsored scouting.The
core values of Scouting are direly needed today and Scouting helps engage boys
with the AP, their quorums, their parents and their leaders. While advancement
is not the be-all and end-all of Scouting, it is a proxy for the aforementioned
engagement with good institutions. In my direct experience I've
witnessed:- 90%+ of Eagle Scouts served a full time mission to
completion- 30 % of non-Eagles served a full time mission. Again,
with Eagle as a proxy for engagement, it's working pretty well if one of
the objectives is guiding YM to serve missions.
@ Hutterite who said, "This is positive. Scouting needs to be independent,
and the church can create it's own indoctrination programs." That's pretty low.
Speaking of right to choose, shouldn't young adults be choosing for
themselves whether they want to be in the scouting programme or not? Just
because it exists less and less as an indoctrination arm of the church
doesn't mean it has lost value.
Good move by the church. Youth really lose interest in scouting after 14 or 15.
Pretty much dead weight programs.
"Duty to God" means NOTHING on a job resume."Eagle
Scout" says a lot.
When organizations as the BSA start talking with buzzwords such as
"tolerance" and "diversity", it is simply time the get out. The
intolerant leftist fascists are slowly changing our right to choose. Free
thought and choice is not accepted any longer in the worlds of diversity and
tolerance. This is what the "new BSA" is teaching the young brownshirts.
I challenge the logic In posts and challengerecurring mythical misinformation
about scout finances:'YW feel disadvantaged relative to
effort/expense that goes into YM'. The solution - dumb-down the YM program!
Yikes!! Classic lowest common denominator thinking. Let's not excel at
anything!! Yikes again!'YM in other countries don't get
the same attention without a scouting program.' Again, lowest common
denomitor thinking. I know it's a real issue the YMGP is wrestling with,
but please - is the best solution to punish something that is available to help
in the US and Canada?Myth 1: Pro Scouters are overpaid. There
may be some isolated cases, but for charitable organizations benefitting
10's of thousands of boys, with 10's of thousands of volunteers (UNPC,
for example), execs are grossly underpaid relative to other charities. If you
doubt it, you go do it!Myth 2: Scouting is an undue financial burden
on the Church and members through FOS. The Church funds a paltry
$10/boy/year. A tiny investment for "the activity arm of the AP". It
should pay more. FOS tries to raise $100/boy, also a tiny sum to support
the program. Show me a youth program that runs on $110/boy.
"it has been my observation that young men who go on High Adventure Trips
(of a week or more) never come home early from missions."Respectfully,I knew many kids whose last encounter with the church
was one of those. You're comment is a classic example of
confirmation bias.The church attitude around scouts, embodied in
your comment, is quite nauseating to many members.
The Varsity and Venturing programs in the church have never ran as outlined in
the BSA handbook. As a long time scouter and recipient of the Silver Beaver
Award I applaud this decision by the church. The money going to BSA for these
two programs was a waste of funds. The BSA basically hung it self with
over-priced uniforms and awards, extravagant fees for camps, and lets face it
their decision on the Gay Rights issue. I think the Friends of Scouting push
this year is going to be a whole lot of misery for those who try to collect it.
I know I am out.
This move shouldn't shock anyone, given the fact that the BSA has decided
to accept the idea that not all scouts or scout leaders fit into the LDS mold.
However, as the parent of a young man who loves scouting and is not a member of
the LDS faith but was aforded the opportunity to participate in the scout
program through the church, I am concerned. My son truly enjoys all that scouts
has to offer. I have already started looking for troops that will alow him to
participate without being a member of the sponsoring organization. It seems that
due to the cost associated with scouting most troops are reluctant to accept
him. Those that are willing are just to far away from home to attend. So I guess
his scouting trail ends early. He is very discouraged with this
decision and is upset that he will not meet his goal of eagle with the scout
troop he has attended since starting. He will miss his friends and leaders, and
I will miss helping him with his projects. This decision has effected him in a
profound way and i am quite sure he is not alone. I am positive my son is not
the only scout who was sweept aside with the churches decision to discontinue
While this is all exciting for those who live out west, or even more so in Utah
where the church owns its own camps. Anywhere else, we rely on the Scouts camps
for our boys to have a place to go and do this stuff. Is the church leadership
really prepared to offer parity world wide to what those in Zion enjoy?When my oldest son was in Youth administrative people in the big building in
Utah decided youth should not travel more than 150 miles from their home wards
anymore. An entire generation of kids missed out on doing things like going and
participating in things like the Hill Cumorah pagent. Fortunately sane minds
prevailed, and that policy was repealed.Sometimes church leadership
forgets we don't all live in Utah. The tell us we need to be building up
the kingdom around the globe, and yet don't provide the same level of
support to youth around the world.The churches mission is to spread
the gospel. Our scouting programs have been far more effective in outreach than
the BYU football team or most of the missionary activities. More youth come to
our church because of scouting... not missionaries knocking on doors. Unfortunately turn back to isolationism.
I have been in Scouts for 46 years, am an Eagle with both of my sons as Eagles.
I have worked at the local, regional and national level of scouts.I
am disappointed in this decision and yet see the wisdom of this decision.I am disappointed as I firmly believe the scouting programs (of which
Varsity and Venturing are part of) can help young men grow into responsible
adults. I have seen the positive impact on thousands of young men.However, those two programs are rarely run properly within the LDS church.
Because too few LDS leaders get trained, they run a "pseudo" program
which the boys don't fully appreciate (and both of those programs are meant
to be MUCH more boy run than a typical Scout Troop." Because of this, I see
the wisdom of pulling away from BSA and not waste sacred resources (aka tithes)
to pay for the registration of those youth and adults - with the exception of
those who want to stay registered in the Scout Troop.I pray that the
"new program" will be run better within the wards, and not just become
"Basketball" or "Duty to God" nights.
I'm an eagle. All my brothers are eagles. My son is now an eagle. My second
son a star. I have a love hate relationship with scouts and I am happy to see
these two programs go.I am thankful for a father that contributed his time in
scouts and worked with my brothers and I. When I say work, I mean work. My
project still stands today after 30 years. That project took me six months.
Others from my lds troop painted parking lines at the church. I'm sure they
didn't last 30 years. I believe the local congregations have always been a
problem with scouts. Each person believes their opinions are fact. The BSA has
also lost touch with reality. Its not about the boys as much as its about career
scouters. All boys seem to be is another account handled by the account manager
and there is no real push to see the boys achieve. My ward is full of people so
difficult that they seem to stifle the boys at times. I hope scouting is gone
from the lds before my youngest gets of age so I can keep just a few positive
memories I have of the program.
Primary isn't separated. School definitely isn't separated! But
when you hit age 12, the Church thinks it needs to separate you forever on! The
Church now has the chance to bring these programs closer together where they
belong. YW and YM need to be together not apart.
Not trying to bash scouts or those who love it but for our family this was happy
news! I've long wished for a young men's program that resembled the
young women's in unity of the young men worldwide as well as the focus
being on, preparing them to be fathers and husbands and to focus developing
faith in Christ. I watched the amazing way it affected my girls and have wanted
it for my boys for a long time! Scouts is ok but it doesn't feel like
it's focus is really on those most important things and it often ends up
stealing the main focus, the time, and energy etc. away from those important
things. It's become too much of a distraction from the things that matter
most, at least from where I'm standing. And sometimes it's treated as
if it is part of the commandments instead of just a program. Ugh. And then
there's the pride and ego that leaks into it when everyone's competing
for badges. Kinda loses the whole point of it all. When my son said, "mom I
don't need a badge for doing something good and most of this I do every
day.", was when I realized how much it needed to change. So as a mother of 4
boys I'm over here feeling very joyful at this moment!
Sounds like a win for basketball.
Having been a Camp Director for an LDS Scout Camp in NJ/NY/PA for a number of
years, it has been my observation that young men who go on High Adventure Trips
(of a week or more) never come home early from missions. Those who avoid the
arduous experience of carrying their provisions for a week on their back often
come home early from missions, if they go at all. Hopefully, strenuous high
adventure trips will be a mandatory part of Teachers and Priests'
activities. Basketball doesn't substitute for learning to become a
Another example of cultural hegemony bites the dust. If the church continues its
global efforts it will have to continue to purge every vestige of Utah/US
cultural practice and philosophy (mingled with scripture) from its
programs/guidelines. Sensible decision.
This is a bad plan. How many boys are going to choose going to more church over
going to scouts?If this would have happened when I was an LDS Scout,
the only time I would have chosen church over scouts on a Tuesday is if there
were pretty girls involved.
Phase one complete. Far overdue, in my opinion, but I trust the Leaders in
their timing. Even back in the mid eighties, when I turned 14, my mind
completely turned away from the strict scouting program. Sports, Girls, Job,
friends, family, Girls, and Sports all took precedence over scouts (Not
necessarily in that order) I never went to a scout camp after I was 14 because I
was playing sports and working. I was just thinking - why do we throw so many
things into a summer? Scout Camp, Youth Conference, Girls camp, and/or Trek if
it's that year. How about one program for a week with all the Youth and
the Youth leaders and then end it! Think how nice it would be to pool all that
money and dedicate it to one event...might have leaders more willing to attend
also. I look forward to seeing Cub and Boy Scouts being
un-associated/un-affiliated with the LDS Church. And for all the
"haters" negatively speculating on why the LDS Church is doing this -
This is America baby! You can start your own program/church/group/faction and
get your own life and affiliate with the BSA all you want...but I suspect you
would rather just complain and do nothing on your own but hate others.
It's been a while since I felt like shouting Hallelujah! As a YM president
for the past two years, I found scouting to be incredibly debilitating. Our
older young men simply were not interested in rank advancements and uniforms.
They wanted authentic activities without all the fluff. I could barely stand
all the red tape, paperwork, fees, certifications, and lost time dealing with
the absurdities of the program. Scouting also couldn't compete with school
sports.With our venture crew we were lucky to get 1 or 2 boys to
show up at any given camp-out or activity... of the 12+ that we had in our ward,
and our stake leadership wouldn't let us combine with other wards to create
healthier units for fear of "muddying the leadership chain". The church itself is going to find itself irrelevant in people's lives if
it can't figure out a better way to lead and inspire people. I've
spent upwards of 10,000 hours in church meetings over the past 20 yrs. Some of
it was great, but most of it was fluff. You know how many camp-outs,
BBQ's, and adventures I could have had with my family & friends with
those lost 10,000 hours? Ugh. Keep on cutting brethren, axe more
"The church will continue to sponsor Cub Scouts for boys 8 to 10 and Boy
Scout programs for those 11 through 13 in those two countries, but statements
released by the church about the announcement signaled that it may drop those
programs in the future, too."No surprise here. This day was
predictable 4 years ago. In another year or two the Church will dump the rest of
BSA as the above statement indicates. So long as we have national leaders like
President Trump and a conservative Supreme Court who preserve and protect
religious liberty and our First Amendment, Churches will be able freely
exercise their own concious and establish programs that are founded on Christian
moral values instead of being under the threat of the federal goverment to cave
into political correctness or be sued as they were with Obama.
How does eliminting church troops insulate the boys from diversity? For those
interested in scouting, there are lots of community troops that do a much better
job, and expose the boys to much more diversity. Along with the church getting
rid of scouting, perhaps they can also ban all basketballs from the church
buildings on Mutual nights. Basketball has nothing to do with building faith.
All it has ever done is provide the boys an excuse not to participate in other
activities, and cause a LOT of noise that echoes around the building. Then they
can address the extreme disparity in funding, travel, and allowed activities
between the young women's and the young men's programs, develop a
program for the young men that is actually spiritual in nature, like the young
women have, and finally have a program for young men outside of North America.
The young women have a worldwide program. Depending on scouting in North
America has allowed them to basically ignore developing a program for young men
around the world.
How will the Brethren know who should serve missions overseas, and what will
young men put on their applications for BYU, and on their resumes well into
Agree with these comments and am sad the actions only go half-way. Too much
compromise when it comes to standards and results. This should have happened
under Robert Gates' watch.Without the LDS church's backing,
watch the BSA make hard left turns as they tank their ranks.
Finally ! Can't wait until they finish the job.Scouting is
fine but let boys choose if they want to participate. Let discipleship and
priesthood service become the new paradigm.
"Discussions about those issues began before highly publicized controversies
over BSA decisions to accept gay Scout leaders and gay and transgender Scouts
and long before last week's news that Scouting has considered admitting
girls to more of its programs. The church said Thursday those issues
weren't part of the decision"So the Church's reason to
drop this program had nothing to do with the homosexual and transgender
issues?Wow. Just when I got my hopes up that the Church was doing
the right thing...
Lots of comments about the pressure of becoming an Eagle Scout and leaving
Scouting once they are an Eagle Scout. Folks, Scouting is not just
about becoming an Eagle,mans the eagle award is not a graduation from Scouting.
Maybe that is where the church has gone wrong in their relationship with
Scouting, by pushing boys to become Eagle Scouts at 13 and 14 years of age. Receiving the Eagle Scout award is not a prize and it certainly is not a
contest to see who gets it first. I am an Eagle Scout. I earned it way to early
and it took years after pining the badge on that I understood what it meant to
be an Eagle Scout. My dad was a First class Scout and I think he got more out of
his scouting experience than many of the church's so called Eagle Scouts.
In church troops, members are asked to be scout leaders, regardless of having
children in the troop, any experience with scouting, relevant skills, or any
interest at all, but it's expected that you will serve where you are asked.
Then there's all the paperwork and online reporting, and it becomes very
time consuming, so the "leaders", who don't want to be there
anyway, are quite lax, and the troop doesn't function well. Its
embarrassing to go to scout camps and see how unprepared and uninterested many
of the church troops are. But somehow, many of these troops still manage to
churn out Eagle Scouts because that's what's expected. Maybe
that's why being an Eagle Scout doesn't have the same prestige it once
did. Part of it is culture doesn't care as much, but part of it is crappy
LDS troops that churn out eagle scouts that can't hold a candle to other
Eagle Scouts. We've moved around some (not a ton) and in some places we
enrolled the boys in community troops because the church troop was so pathetic.
This frequently left our boys with nothing to do during mutual, which should be
spiritual. It was usually "scouts" and/or basketball.
In our ward, it's always been a complete misnomer to refer to the teachers
quorum as a "Varsity Scout team" or the priests quorum as a
"Venturing Crew." I suspect that not 1 in 50 wards in the U.S. have
made even a half-hearted effort at implementing Varsity Scouts or Venturing; to
the extent that Scouting has happened after the boys turn 14, it's almost
always been an individual effort to finish off the Eagle Scout requirements. I
can't say what the future is for Scouting for LDS boys ages 8-13, but I see
the dropping of Varsity Scouts and Venturing more as a cost-cutting measure (and
a facing up to reality) than a response to recent BSA policy changes.
This is such great news! And I look forward to the Church dropping scouts
altogether and replacing it with a Church-wide world-wide program of its own
— better, more focused on things that matter most instead of merit badge
busywork. Happy day!
Why must boys be in scouts to the point a church assigns their participation? It
looks to me that the LDS church is really pushing mission prep. Teens have to do
seminary during the week, many hours of church on Sunday, attend activities
decided on by their leaders, encouraged to do camp/trek, EFY, byu sport camps,
work part time to save money for mission/college, and take increasing
challenging high school classes both in number and difficulty since the
requirements have increased in each state and BYU became more difficult to
enter. Where do they have time to earn Eagle Scout rank?
I think the LDS church did the boy scouts a favor. The Boy Scouts have needed to
part ways with this toxic organization for at least a couple decades now.
As someone who can say every single male in my family is an eagle scout, all i
can say is it's about time! I can't wait until they drop cub scouts
and boy scouts up to age 13. Those that claim its all because of gays are
ignoring many many facts so they can bash the church. The fact is scouting in
the church frequently doesn't work well, especially outside of Utah. The
church pays millions to BSA every year so BSA can bloat the salaries of their
executives. They require extremely overpriced uniforms, plus all the badges,
pins, and other accessories that must also be purchased. In the church there is
a lot of apathy by the parents and boys, and resentment by leaders. In real
scouting, the boys are supposed to take the lead and the adults are there for
supervision, support, and instruction when needed. In the church, parents think
that getting their boys to the weekly activities is doing their job. They
can't even be bothered to drop off their boys for campouts. The scout
leaders have to go around and pick them up. The activities are all planned and
led by the adults, not the boys, and the boys participate with varying degrees
of interest in anything scouting, but its "church".
this is truly a sad day. i am in my 60's and scouting made me a much
better man. This is a lost opportunity for many young men. i understand
the church's decision.
My Eagle Scout came off the wall and the resume and went into the garbage the
day the BSA announced it would allow gay scout leaders. While it would be
absolutely false to say that all or even a large percentage of gays are child
molesters, it is absolutely true (see U.S. DOJ statistics) that almost all child
molesters are gay men. Opening BSA leadership positions to gay men is bound to
attract predators from that subset of gay men and will, inevitably, result in
terrible criminal tragedies. I do not want to be associated with those
inevitable problems. My son and my dollars were also withdrawn from the
program.While I have no comment on the LDS church's decision, I
can say that the handwriting was on the wall the day the BSA caved to the
pressure to admit gay leaders. That was the day the BSA went on life support.
Another successful liberal crusade to destroy all that is good in America.
I think this is a great opportunity for the church to focus on the collective
growth and well being of its youth worldwide. Now with the missionary age at 18,
this is a great time to provide a program that will prepare our youth not only
in a practical way that will prepare them for the real world and their missions
as Scouts has attempted to do, but to focus on the spiritual side of their
growth. Focusing on personal conversion, Duty to God, and a host of other
inspired opportunities such as Face to Face. How cool would it be for every
American ward to have a sister ward in another state or country allowing the
youth to interact face to face via the internet with like-minded youth sharing
their unique perspectives and experiences, growing together. So many amazing
possibilities to look forward to!
Gee whiz. Nothing has changed, people. If you didn't get your eagle by
the time you were 15 you were completely on your own to finish it yourself.
It's always been that way. We've never been involved in Venture and
Varsity ... we only pretended we did, but they were only YM activities that will
continue - so yeah nothing has changed, except for when they're 14 and
actually were involved in scouts.And so our YM aren't going to
get help to get their Eagle in their 14th year when they used to? Big whoop ...
most of those scouts who got their Eagles by then didn't really earn their
merit badges. Their mom did. Regardless, from 15 yrs old and on it was the YM
program. Always has been. Now it's just official.
I've been a product of LDS scouting. I didn't have parents or scout
leaders help me in scouts. My parents were burnt out from pushing my older
brothers through. My leaders were undertrained and struggling to do the program.
I was very active and went to everything and did all my scouting homework. I
ended up with the Life rank. I was missing one merit badge but no one knew what
I was missing until it was too late. I've now served in many scouting
positions for the last 15 years continually. I gave my brief
background to point out where I'm coming from. Scouting has its problems
but most of those problems are not the program being a bad program. Our
attitudes and culture have changed and caused more and more friction. We
haven't really done a great job at implementing scouting the way it was
designed. The church joined scouting when the patrol method was the only method.
Now the patrol method isn't widely used, understood, or implemented. I
believe we still have many hurdles for any new direction. Our YM groups are
generally small and our LDS culture isn't always easy to join. Older young
men don't serve the younger the way they could. We still need what scouting
To: Walt Nicholes - Orem, UT re: Eagle Scout rank. Well, if the Soviet Union,
along with its Cuban and Nicaraguan 'allies', had invaded the USA as
portrayed in the original "Red Dawn", a Cuban VDV Colonel would consider
you as a member of an 'elite, paramilitary organization.' Which some
wags have accused the Church of being, and I wish that I were entirely
joking.This may be the way that the Church eases its way out of
Scouting, but my impression is that once boys hit high school, they more or less
lose interest anyway. Indeed, though it shouldn't be, all too many who
continue are considered 'nerdy' or socially retarded. Since the lads,
if they follow the normal course of events, should be prepared to serve a
full-time mission once they turn 18 and graduate high school, it makes more
sense to have more Church-sponsored activities that build towards that.
@UC Professor:"This is a dishonest, cynical move to further
demonize, marginalize and eventually eliminate all diversity and tolerance of
gay men, of every age. No one is fooled by the rhetorical smokescreen employed
here."What evidence do you have of this? It is missing.
Because of the lack of evidence presented it makes me wonder if your opinions
are being formed based on some prejudice or stereotype? If so, don't
invoke promoting diversity to defend your views. It gives diversity a bad
name.Diversity is about benefiting from different cultural values
and making a judgement on what different ideas are good. In order to make the
judgement of what is good, there has to be some absolute standard so that we
don't adopt repugnant practices (cannibalism, slavery, etc) solely because
they are different. The LDS church has been a vocal supporter of the idea that
there are moral absolutes. So if anything, their position is one of
strengthening diversity rather than weakening it.
The next big headline will read "DMV Experiences Huge Surge in Driver's
License Applications" --when all those parents finally realize they can stop
threatening their sons with "No driver's license unless you get your
Eagle!"I've thought for a long time that the award had a
lot more to do with a parent's "Ego" than the son's
I am thrilled about this announcement. In the past, our ward has had a very
successful venture crew and it helped the ym and did great things for them.
However, times change and I think it's a great time for this change.
There's always scouting with the town/community if people want to
continue I'm a yw president and it is really hard to have to tell my
incredible young women that we can't go do these crazy adventures due to
budget and the fact they are girls. It also seems like the focus has been more
on scouts and not on spiritual growth. I'm looking forward to seeing how
both the ym and yw programs will be effected.
On a scout opening program, my son was told that if he didn't get his
Eagle Scout, he would be a failure in his life. That came from a guy whose kids
did get their Eagle awards but became inactive short after. I told my son to do
what he can if he wanted but what I really wanted from him was to graduate both
High School and Seminary. He did that and much more. And yes, he remains active
in Church. That was 15+ years ago. Maybe I am wrong but I didn't see the BS
program evolving with times. What I did see was putting unnecessary extra
pressure on kids making the BS program crucial for life and taking the emphasis
away from what it does matter: to build their own testimonies.
I have to admit, I am happy to see it go! I did enjoy going camping and
spending time with other young men in my ward, but not much else. I feel like
the church could emphasize better standards for youth than the boy scout
program.I especially did not feel good when my leaders told me that
if I did not get my Eagle Scout that I would not go on a mission or get married
in the temple. By the way, although I am far from perfect, I did accomplish
both without my Eagle Scout award.
Having seen LDS run programs (grew up in the church with brothers in scouting)
and now being part of a non-LDS troop, I've seen a huge difference in some
of the groups. Being called to be a scout leader isn't really the best way
to insure that scouting works for young men. Too many times, leaders who are
fulfilling a calling aren't personally invested in the program. Being part
of a troop where leaders volunteer their time makes it much more likely that the
program is run well and that the boys will enjoy their time as a scout. I hope that the Church is able to implement a program that works, but if
they're relying on 'forced' leadership, I'm not hopeful that
they'll have any more success with a different program. I also hope that
boys who are interested in scouting the way it's written by the BSA will
have parents who might consider letting them join a non-LDS troop, or letting
spiritual development occur within the arms of the Church, and setting up a BSA
troop for their boys.
It's about time. This is a welcome and long-overdue step, and hopefully
won't be the last. I'm glad that those boys who still want to pursue
Scouting will be encouraged to do so. Slow but steady...
Ummm, the scout haters may want to hold off dancing on the grave of Mormon
Scouting, because Mormon Scouting will continue for Cub Scouts and 11-13
year-old Scouts. Scouts will still go to Scout Camp - scouts will still work on
merit badges - scout activities will occur on Wednesday nights and scout
outings will occur on weekends - yes, there will still be the beloved Friends of
Scouting. I'm sorry to rain on the parade for some, but that is the
reality of Mormon Scouting.
I was in a stake meeting when this news broke. All in attendance cheered. Now
can we get rid of basketball?
The last statement of the article "More than 280,000 LDS boys and young men
who are between the ages of 8-13 will remain associated with Cub Scouts and Boy
Scouts" is misleading. It implies that boys older than 13 will NOT remain
associated with Boy Scouts. Saying that the Church will no longer sponsor Boy
Scout Troups does not mean that boys will be told not to join other Boy Scout
troups in their towns. There have been times in my 24 years of church
membership that the Church has encouraged boys to join town troups. I have 4
boys who are Eagles, and 3 more who intend to become so as well. I support the
Church's new program and am looking forward to it! My boys will also
continue with Boy Scouts until they achieve the rank of Eagle.
I strongly endorse this decision. I was one of those hounded to get my Eagle,
which I did, but the benefits of having achieved that rank are at best etherial.
I have never had it come up in a job interview. I didn't need it to be
worthy to serve a mission. My wife didn't make sure I was an Eagle Scout
before she married me. My kids didn't care.On the other hand,
I did learn a lot of things, and some skills, on the way to the Eagle Rank.
Might I have learned them in some other forum? Perhaps.I agree that
the BSA seemed to be taking the LDS church for granted. I look forward to the
day when there will be no more hyper-military cub scouts either. But we do need
to continue to teach our youth to love this country, and aspire to continuing
freedom. We can do that without Scouting.
So no more pushing to get the their Eagle ? I guess we'll stop the Merit
Badges classes now . . .
"Mormons drop Scout programs"I think everyone saw this
coming. I am surprised it has taken so long.
65TossPowerTrap - I said the YW program has flourished, that does not mean that
every girl that participated in the YW program flourished - just that the
program itself was created by the Church and has functioned well for years
without the need to pay millions of dollars a year to an outside organization. I
am sorry your girls did not enjoy their experience in YW's. I
agree with you that girls should have more opportunities to enjoy outdoor
recreational activities - go camping, hiking, rafting, etc. The good news is
they can! I organized a yearly camping trip - not Girls Camp - with my girls
every year when I was a YW leader. The girls helped plan the activities, and
they expressed an interest, and so we did it. There was no crying involved and
we didn't talk about our feelings. I agree that girls have been
short-changed in this regard, with scouting budgets many times larger than YW
budgets and wards and stakes buying outdoor gear "for the Scouts" and
not "for the youth" to share equally. (In my experience anyway).Yorkshire - shouldn't we all be "beating the drum that YW are
just as important as boys?" Aren't our young women just as important
as our young men?
I suspect that eventually, the Church will cancel the scouting program if, for
no other reason, than lack of interest.In my area ward troops were
combined and even then only came up with 7 scouts.I suspect on a
stake basis, they wouldn't even be able to come with 15 scouts.Several reasons for this: a) kids just don't see the relevance in it.
b)kids are "dating" even as young as 12 (even though the parents
don't approve, it still happens)c)those kids who ARE social would rather
spend their time with organized sports, than the "regimen" of BSA
activities. d)in MANY cases their parents also didn't find it relevant, so
they, in turn, don't urge their kids to participate.In my ward,
the ONLY person they could get to run the "friends of scouting" drive
was an 87 yr. old guy, and the only other person who donated (he told me
later)was his 91 yr. old neighbor!I think the "values" being
taught at Scouting have a lot of merit, but the whole program needs to be either
revamped, or those values taught some other way.
Are we forgetting that the distinguished, dedicated and generous British man who
invented Scouting was gay? Has that fact been buried in all the other fear
based homophobia, false allegations and harassment of young gay Scouts? This is
a dishonest, cynical move to further demonize, marginalize and eventually
eliminate all diversity and tolerance of gay men, of every age. No one is
fooled by the rhetorical smokescreen employed here.
Oh my gosh! How in the world will these boys get jobs now that many of them
won't be able to list that they are an Eagle Scout on their resume?
So they finally admit that Scouting is not the activity arm of the priesthood.
What else will they change their mind on? If they listened to the members, they
might learn something.
The LDS Church has buried an ineffective program that has been dead for many
years. There are more effective programs for enhancing development in
Scouting is not the end-all-be-all for teaching our young men responsibility,
respect, a serving attitude, community involvement, discipline, and goal
setting. The Gospel teaching us that, too, you know, besides many other
activities. The scouting program is great...for some boys, not all, and those
who want to continue can. And for those worried that the church is
"withdrawing from the the world" because of this decision, join a pack
sponsored by another church or school. Problem solved. Or, live outside of
Utah. 😜One of my boys doesn't like scouts. He thinks it
nerdy and is embarrassed by the uniforms (no offense). He LOVES camping and
being outdoors and learning all those skills, though. He participates in all
service activities. He just has no desire to earn a merit badge. Does this mean
he's going to lack some skills that only a scout shirt can provide? I
don't think so. He goes to to zero period seminary (5:30am) so he can go to
high school football and weightlifting practice at 6:20 every morning. Just
doing that everyday teaches important skills like responsibility, goal setting,
discipline and determination. There are different roads to build character guys.
Only a matter of time now until the Church tosses the entire BSA program. This
was just to soften the blow in transition. So will all the Scouting die-hards
shoving the "Scouting is THE activity arm of the Aaronic Priesthood"
line be quiet now, please? Clearly, it isn't.Just a couple
months ago an older gentleman at Church said this exact line during the FOS fund
drive and added "and it will always be so". I thought to myself at the
time, "always" is pretty strong. Little did I know then, how soon I
would have a huge smile on my face thinking about that one.
The Church has not left Scouting.....Scouting has left the Church. I have two
Eagle Scout sons with Order of the Arrow who served missions and I can truly
say....it's not the same Scouting Program today that served my children and
ward and stake so well in the past.
Small but important correction ... in Canada and UK the top award is actually
called "Queen's Scout". So two paragraphs could be revised as:The First Presidency said young men who want to continue to work toward
"the rank of Eagle Scout or Queen's Scout should be encouraged and
supported and should be properly registered as Scouts."A
Queen's Scout is the Canadian and UK equivalent to BSA's Eagle rank.
Well its a good start. Now get rid of the other corrupt Scouting programs.
So happy to hear this news. Got it on the way to work and couldn't stop
smiling for 5 mins. I've been a YM leader in 4 u.s. states and 5 wards,
regularly done the training. Was a scout growing up and achieved LIFE
advancement but that's all. Honestly the boys were willing to
do the fun scouting stuff, but the paperwork and follow through all came down to
their own parents (and few ever did anything with it), but I still felt like a
failure all the time in YM, and it was 90% due to Scouting. I'd feel great
about Sunday lessons, fun activities, youth conferences, Duty to God, etc. but I
always felt like a failure when it came to scouting. It was like dragging snails
to the salt flats.This will allow YM leaders at the youth age to do
MORE actually. The church just lifted a 500 lb gorilla off their backs...I feel
lighter and happier already. No more guilt and shame due to poor scouting
attendance by the boys and poor advancements.I'm an employer,
and have 30 men in their 20's working for me. I have never asked a single
one if they are a Eagle Scout. It's never mattered to me. I know of ZERO
employers that ask that anymore. I care about the character of the person.
A couple things:When I was a boy scout I was told that I could NOT
ever become an Eagle Scout because physically I could not get the Life-Saving
Merit Badge. Many have since told me that "wasn't true" but there
were more boys than just me told that back in the 1960's. So my older
brother and I dropped out of scouting...he saying "If it's not good
enough for my brother, it's not good enough for me." They have since
modified that stance and my two sons and his son have all 3 become Eagle Scouts.
I always have a twinge of pain at an Eagle Ceremony when they form the Eagles
Nest and I remember that I was denied that opportunity. After 55+ years it
still stings a bit. I'm glad my sons didn't suffer such a
restrictive, exclusionary experience. I attribute it to either poor leadership
or the military type mentality that existed at that time.Secondly,
the way things are going the Boy Scouts of America are going to have to change
their name to the "Scouts of America." PC has ruined this national
treasure and those who founded it are turning over in their graves, I'm
It is such a blessing to have a living prophet who is able to lead and guide us!
I am looking forward to seeing the changes the Lord has in store for his young
men and the blessings it will bring.
The Church lost control of this program, so they did away with it. It is
clearly in their best interest to create programs where they don't have to
experience normal people, who happen to be Gay. It is a sad day. On the other
hand, at least I don't have to feel guilty anymore about never making Eagle
Scout (the bullying was just too much).
I think this is a sad movement. If they remove the Boys from Utah that get
their Eagle Scouts by 13 it would be interesting to see how many boys get their
Eagle Scouts after 14-17. Not all the wards and stakes outside of Utah have an
Eagle Scout program to get their boys completed by 13.
I'm a proud Eagle Scout, but I definitely understand the Church's
rationale here. Political issues aside, the Varsity and Venturing programs were
very difficult to implement properly. I was lucky enough to have some great YM
leaders, but the only real difference between being a Varsity or Venture Scout
as opposed to a regular Scout was the name and the fact that we went on high
adventure trips instead of going to Scout camp.My fondest memories of
Scouting as a youth were the high adventure trips. Most of the merit badges were
tedious and boring, the official BSA events like Scout camp and youth leadership
trainings were a snore, and too many leaders failed to teach the boys to plan
and lead, resulting in many poorly planned activities that no one enjoyed.The parts of Scouting that are good don't have to leave the Young
Men's program, but as the Church slowly removes itself from the BSA
(I'm sure that the days of 8-13 year-old Scouting programs in the Church
are numbered, too), they can teach the boys to lead and serve through programs
more tailored to the needs of the Church.
More of QuestionDon't we want our young men to experience other young
men in a setting outside of churchs and school to afford them the ability to
shine as a good example to learn to become Outstanding citizens and encourage
other young men in society to do the same?Why not strengthen
the BSA and open new opportunities in other countries without scouting programs
there?The Church is shutting the doors for young men outside the
church an opportunity to meet Mormon young men doing good deeds without being an
actual church sponsored Activity.My first experiences and part of my
foundation for becoming a member of The Church was my experience with LDS young
First, thanks to everyone for your comments. SeNext, the Church has often
asked for sacrifice for one cause or another. Later, the program or goal was
changed or deleted. That did not make it uninspired. Willing effort and
sacrifice is always a sanctifying experience for those doing it - regardless of
how long the cause lasted. That's how I will look at my experiences as a
youth and adult leader in the Scouting program.Also, I have felt the
increasing strain on my time, family, budget, and emotional health trying to
support a BSA program that was way too complex and demanding. I was hopeful
that they would learn to simplify. Obviously, they have not. I am thankful to
the Church leaders for trying to do so now. Few adults have the means and time
to run a BSA program.Finally, I agree with others that becoming an Eagle
Scout is not the beginning or end of the purpose of Scouting. The real purpose
of Scouting, an any good program for youth, is to build character, leadership,
and skills that will help them become better citizens and disciples of Christ.
P.S. Thank you to all my Scout leaders - those who helped me as a youth, and as
an adult leader! Do Your Best!
I am amazed at what I consider to be the large number of negative and sometimes
hateful comments aimed at the Boy Scouts. The success of the Scouting program in
your church is not the responsibility of the Boy Scouts, it is the
responsibility of your volunteer leaders, and to be quite honest the quality of
church members being called to serve as scouting leaders has been poor. For
years these callings have been undersold by church leaders and under appreciated
by those who were called. I know wonderful LDS scouters, and I know pathetic LDS
scouters. Guess which ones have good programs with happy families? Severing ties with the BSA is not going to change this. If venture and varsity
programs are not working it is the fault of church leadership at the stake and
Ward level. If memory serves me correct the Varsity program was developed about
30 years ago specifically to meet the need of LDS Scouting. This is a sad day
for the church and a sad day for thousands of boys and young men that will be
denied the opportunity that their fathers, grandfathers, and other previous
generations have had for character, skill and spiritual development in a
structured and positive environment.
I think this is a good move for the Scouts. The LDS church as attempted over
the years to use it in a way it was never intended.LDS ward charters
typically only have boys from LDS families (not all but many).Scouts
should be more inclusive, and it is better when the boys that make up the troop
come from more diverse backgrounds. This helps to teach them to grow up to be
men who are more inclusive and understanding of people who may not believe
exactly as they are their families do.
Would have been fun to see the faces of the overpaid top BSA executives...Have they figured out yet that the LDS Friends of Scouting gravy train
is eventually going to end and deprive them of a lot of $$ ?? :)Wish we could get Cub and younger Scout things at a fair price.But
I do NOT fall in with the same complainers (many in these comments) who think YW
are getting short changed. Our local YW thankfully do not have
'feminist' leaders and mothers who are always beating the 'YW are
just as important as boys' drum. A ward where that WAS the case are
now filled with women who are advocating for women to stand in the baby blessing
circle, and were Kate Kelly sympathizers, OVERLY focused on women in the
Scriptures, or lamenting we don't study RS leaders of early days of the
Church like we do early Prophets etc. etcMaybe no link, but seemed
obvious to us that kind of next jump was a result--after hearing constant
accusations that YW weren't as valued as the Scouts.....
Re: johnpack"They do NOT need another hour of Sunday School on
I have thought for the last 5 years that the Church Scouting Program was going
in the wrong direction. I to have seen a lack of interest for the older boys. As
a Scoutmaster in my Ward I have pondered what the future would hold for our
precious youth. I opposed in 2013 any movement that would allow homosexual youth
and adults into our Scouting program I knew that the BSA was condoning a policy
that the LDS Church would eventually cause the Church to make changes in the
Scouting program. Now that it has become a fact. My question now is with a
January 1st 2018 effective date we need to have a more clear direction for our
15 and up young men for the future. My original hope was that the Church would
start its own program. I believe that we have plenty of skilled leaders in the
Church who could support our own program. I am truly optimistic for changes in
our Scout program I am very happy that the Church has put God first a doctrine
that is eternal and irreversible no matter what man does. I believe that our
Church leaders have had deep prayer to seek the direction and future of our
Scouting program. In my 30 years of Scouting I have always been blessed with
supporting our youth.
Re: wgirl"The YW don't play basketball every Wednesday
night. The YW program has flourished for years without paying millions for
assistance from an outside club. "Maybe the YW program works for
you, but it didn't "flourish" for my three daughters. They got
tired of the constant "sharing of feelings", crying and choreographed
spirituality - particularly at Girls Camp. My daughters wanted to do the
outdoor stuff that my sons did in Scouting.
It's about time! Scouting is more about money than actually helping boys.
Top leaders make ridiculous amounts of money in a program that is supposedly
nonprofit. It's also sad that the church spends so much money on a program
for boys, while the girls have been limited to one fundraiser a year and not
even that anymore with budgets growing smaller. I was upset as a youth that the
boys got to do cool activities like camping, hiking, rafting, etc. while the
girls had activities like how to apply makeup and do hair. I'm excited
about this, especially since my son is now in Young Men. The church can run a
better program by itself where the funds will actually go to help boys and not
line the pockets of Boy Scout officials. Funds will also be more equally
distributed among the YM and YW of the church which is how it should've
always been. With 5 girls of my own, this also excites me. I am so thankful
that the church is standing up to this program and finally doing something about
it. So, don't mind me while I do my little happy dance 😁
This is a good move, but no panacea. We must expect greater scrutiny than ever
before. Individuals and groups will seek to be included in the new program and
bring suit every time they feel discriminated against.In other
words, they will seek control over our own program.And, to some
extent, the Church will cave to their demands.I would very much like
to be proved wrong.
@Gruncle Ralph.Though time requirements for rank advancements haven't
changed, age requirements for participation in a Boy Scout Troop was lowered
from12 to 11 in 1949. For LDS Troops the change never made sense, because prior
to the change the troop ages matched up nicely with LDS priesthood quorums. Just my opinion, but that extra year of maturity gives young men the
opportunity to take a lot more responsibility for their choices in life, and
how they fulfill their scouting requirements. The pressure to achieve is less
on Mom and Dad (ok, Mom really) and more on the young man. As the Church
gradually introduces its new program, we can expect it to fully recognize the
maturity and added responsibility that young men take on when they are ordained
to the Aaronic Priesthood.
In my experience, the problem with church Scout units boils down to 1) programs
from 11-13 that are too much like schools and too little outdoors in an attempt
to be Eagle factories (which creates the false impression that youth aren't
interested in scouting by 14), 2) advisors who refuse to let the youth led, and
3) leaders who successfully turned Varsity Teams and Venturing Crews into
troops.Our youth desperately need the outdoor, fun, youth-led
program Scouting was intended to be. They do NOT need another hour of Sunday
School on activity night.
The haters of Scouting didn't read the announcement very well. The boys
will still be encouraged and helped to achieve the rank of Eagle.Now, if you look at the YM Duty to God booklet, and look at the requirements
there, and go to the website in the letter sent by the First Presidency, you
will see that the Venturing and Varsity program will continue under a new name.
In fact, it will give MORE structure to the YM program making it more like the
YW program.Now, tell me all of you former Scout Masters that hate
scouting, do you really think it will be less work implementing a YM style
program for the YM than it was under Venturing and Explorers?
This is great news! I love the principles of scouting, but the Church can teach
those without a direct affiliation to the BSA. At least for those ages 14+. I was always bothered by the President of the BSA getting a $1.8 million
salary while we all hound the members to do friends of scouting and pay for
super expensive badges/awards when the Church could do their own program for
cheaper and better. Good move!
As a scout leader, serving two different bosses, the church, and BSA, was
difficult at best. The church dud not leave scouting, scouting has left the
church. I will be happy when we leave BSA completely.
From a different perspective, I served in the YW program as both ward and stake
president for over 10 years. We worked very hard to make the program relevant,
interesting and exciting. For those great girls, but it was heartbreaking to see
the YM go out of town to see a nuclear submarine while we (leaders) took money
from our own pockets to take the girls on an acivity we could afford at home -
and that's just one example of the inequities we worked hard to overcome.
Scouting may be a great program, but from my perspective it robbed the YW of
adventure and outings that could have been equally as character building, career
promoting, mission preparing and family focused as the YM.
I've been a scout leader for 20 years and have absolutely loved scouting.
I was expecting this announcement sometime, and anticipate a wonderful program
for the YM. I completely trust LDS Church leaders.
Venture and Varsity have never worked in any ward I have been in. The only
scouting that has worked is for the younger boys, up to age 13. So this
probably won't change a whole lot in practice. Of course, now my boys (14
and 16) may wonder if they should even worry about finishing their Eagle - they
are very close, so I am sure they will.
"As a former Eagle Scout this basically says to me that this was an
uninspired program and that my time in young men's was obviously
wasted."It says nothing of the kind. First of all, Eagle Scout,
and scouting in general, were never claimed to be "inspired programs" of
the church. The Church has always maintained its independence in how it ran
scouts vs. how National ran it. Eagle rank in the Church was always meant to be
just a milepost marker in a boy's progress toward adulthood, not a salvific
ordinance. You sound like you're just looking for an excuse to
complain about a change you don't like. That says a lot more about what you
didn't learn in the leadership aspects of the Eagle rank advancement
requirements than it says about the program as a whole. If you want what the
Eagle Scout rank symbolized to continue in the new programs the Church is
rolling out, then roll up your sleeves and get to work on it. Complaining fixes
Will this be the death-nell of scouting? Not if we continue to financially
support it! Did you notice that we are still participating in FOS? By-the-way,
Our ward only collected $50 toward our $1800 assessment this year. The stake
Pres says the rest will have to come out of our budget if we don't do a
fund raiser. We just did a fund raiser to send our youth on a Stake organized
Youth Conference to Salt Lake/Provo. We barely made it. Good luck getting blood
from this turnip of a ward!
Makes sense to me. The Varsity/Venture programs have always seemed irrelevant
and confusing. Now the official focus will be to get an Eagle by 14, then
continue with activities that will focus on preparing the young men to cope with
relevant and real-life challenges they will soon face as they prepare to leave
home. My son is 14 and will earn his Eagle this summer, and I am very happy to
hear about the change.
During my 12 years as Scoutmaster in New England, I had stake leaders provide
leadership and activities that the boys in our troop and I couldn't
provide, such as canoeing. I knew how to hike and to backpack, but I didn't
know how to canoe, and canoeing was a big thing in New England! I especially
liked the fact that our stake left us alone, unless we needed help. I gave as
much freedom to the boys as possible, and our stake gave as much freedom to the
branches and wards as possible.One boy come to a monthly campout
with only a frying pan and a small receiving blanket -- no food, no sleeping
bag, no tent. I felt prompted to let him stay, and I found our troop leader, a
Priest, and said, "You have a problem!" He found the boys patrol leader,
a Teacher, and said, "You have a problem!" The Patrol Leader found his
patrol and figured out ways to help the boy survive and enjoy the campout. The
temperature got down to 28 (F) that night, and the first thing the boy said the
next morning was, "I'm cold." He learned his lesson and came to the
next campout well prepared!But, times change and the church changes
its policies to keep up with the times and prompting from the Lord.
IMO, this is mainly about money and the complexity of the Boy Scout organization
in 2017.The Church can do a much simpler program that better fits
the needs of its youth worldwide.As for money, the Church
doesn't have the money adopt the Boy Scout program internationally.
Additionally, the Church can also now align YM and YW in a much more equal way,
and do it on a global basis.As an Eagle Scout and former Scout
leader, I miss the way Boy Scouts used to be. But, I am excited about the
changes to YM and YW that will be well-thought-out, implemented globally, and
under inspiration, as opposed to the direction of the now PC BSA.
Yay!! I've been saying for years that the BSA has been sucking way too much
in funds from our church, and the boys aren't focused enough on spiritual
aspects. And.. As already stated, had been way misaligned with spending
compared with YW. Primary budget is always bled dry by Cubs as well, so I hope
that's done away with asap!
I am currently a Unit Commissioner, and just FYI, I live in the heart of South
Jordan, with the majority who are LDS, white-bred (I can say this cause I would
fit this category too, even though I was raised near San Francisco where I was
def the minority). I am sorry to hear of those who feel they have been
excluded. That isn't what Scouting is about, nor the LDS Church. In our
area, we have always invited AND PAID for ALL eligible boys within our
neighborhood charter boundaries. There have been several of those, not of our
faith, who have served as Scout leaders because they enjoy their children, and
they have been very well accepted. There was recently an 8-year old boy who
joined Scouting and his 2 moms are fully supportive. As a neighborhood, I have
watched those in Scouting working hard to accommodate and be sensitive to the
needs of this family. The participation levels, even with the younger Cub
Scouts has dwindled over the years as competitive sports and other
extracurriculars have filled the gaps of time and character building experiences
as a team where Scouting once used to have that place. I think there are many
reasons to part ways, and now is a good time.
Well this falls in line with the attitudes of Young Men leaders that "we
don't do Scouting, we do a different program" (not true, read the green
book on LDS scouting). If the goal is to get a boy on a mission, not get a boy
to eagle, then this program (which is the young women program, but with extra
sports thrown in) is certainly aligned with that goal. Remember, it's
not the boys who make the program in the church, it's the leaders. If the
LDS leaders continue to be lack-a-daisical about teaching the boys to be
leaders, and creating a program they are interested in and then coaching them to
lead it, if the leaders continue to just throw a basketball into the room four
times a month and call that an activity, then the new program will go nowhere
either.The number one reason for failure of the scouting program in the
church, is the failure of the leaders to get trained. Trained leaders have a
whole different understanding of what scouting does for the youth. I really feel
it's the lack of trained leaders that has killed scouting for the LDS
church. If you read the LDS scouting instructions you find that a scout leader
is to complete training before he is sustained in church.
During my 12 years as Scoutmaster in New England, our troop had a lot of boys
achieve Eagle Scout, and I don't know of any boys were were
"hounded" by their parents to achieve that rank. The boys became Eagles
because they wanted that rank! I don't know of any boys who went camping
monthly (regardless of weather) because their parents "hounded" them to
go with the troop. They went camping because they wanted to go.The
thing I liked most about scouting was the success BSA had with the boys running
their own troop and the adults acting as mentors and advisors and being in the
background. We were a small branch, and we covered an area as large as the Salt
Lake Valley, and the boys came from several towns scattered around the area. It
was hard for the boys to have planning meetings, because they came from
different towns, but we did the best we could. We were glad that Sunday meetings
and weekly Mutual meetings brought the boys together.
Less is more-thank you for removing one more draining duty (which Scouting has
become) from our lives! **The Church and the programs they have
endorsed/supported have always been meant to support the family, not replace it.
Bet nobody saw this configuration coming. I didn't.Bet we thought it would be all or nothing.I personally am
pleased.Preserves what is best about Scouting-- and then gets kids
out about when political correctness issues could come into play.
Its about time the church took this stand! Good news!
Scouting is one important program to teach discipline and the importance of
achievement. The Eagle Scout award is an excellent award to have one's
resume. It is also an excellent goal to achieve for all young men.I think
there is something else going on here with this notice. And I would not be
surprised to see the Church leaving the Scout's totally in the near future.
And while the Public Affairs office my deny any suggestion that it has anything
to do with homosexuals or politics, it seems pretty obvious to me that this is
exactly what is driving this move. Sad.
@mcfarrenIt will be even more ideal when ages 12-13 bow out as well. The
ever-increasing rush to Eagle at younger and younger ages, and at lower and
lower levels of expectation, has unfortunately devalued the the rank for many
years.----------------I don't see how that can be true
when the same time limits are in place that boys have to wait to attain certain
rank advancements that have always been there, they have the same requirement of
merit badges as always (with the same number of Eagle required MB's) and
the same requirements for eagle projects.There were go-getters who
got their Eagle at 13/14 when I was a Scout just like there are now, it's a
fallacy that kids are getting it "earlier and earlier." That's just not the case.
I think this was a terrible descision. As a former Eagle Scout this basically
says to me that this was an uninspired program and that my time in young
men's was obviously wasted. In my experience the church will really have to
step up their young men's program in order to fill the spot of scouts. They
will basically have to come up with a knock of scouting because the duty to god
program really needs a lot of work. Going through as a young man it was
constatly changing vary vague and open to interpretation and poorly constructed.
Where else are the young men who don't have fathers who are outdoorsmen
going to get to go camping learn survival skills as well as wood working archery
shooting etc. I don't think those things will be included in duty to god.
The church is already having trouble keeping young men interested so is it a
good idea to remove a program that actually makes it fun? In my opinion church
leaders always talk about how they need good strong men to lead but they are
removing a program that allows boys to feel like men and do things that men have
done for centuries. This will not strengthen the young men but ultimately make
Doess this sentence in the article have a typo?"Today, about 470,000
LDS boys and young men ages 8-13 participate in Scouting programs in the US and
Canada. "Should it say ages 8-18? It doesn't jive with the
numbers in the next paragraph.
I grew up in a small ward in Tennessee and BSA was a heavy focus in the youth
program. I really enjoyed the BSA program until it came time to submit my Eagle
Project. I was going to get the material necessary and install the flooring for
a new disabled women's shelter. My brother for his project was going to
build walls to section off rooms in the shelter. Our projects were rejected
multiple times even after revising each time. Eventually, our scout master went
to the council to see why the proposals that he felt were really good were
getting rejected. The council told him that they don't need our church in
the BSA, and we should just stick to our Duty to God program we have. I
eventually found the motivation to get my Eagle 4 years later after moving to
California where the church is more accepted. People have the right to think the
church is reacting to the BSA's newer rules (I don't think the church
is), but you need to see the discrimination in the reverse.I
personally am in favor of this split because, like the article said, the church
can now focus its time and money on providing a meaningful youth program to all
its members across the world and not just the US and Canada.
This seriously makes me so happy!! I've been wanting this to happen since
the day I was asked to submit our primary budget for our ward and told I needed
to allocated just about half of it to the cub scouts. I was appalled that that
much money was going to just one program in our church to pay for badges and
pins (I know there's more to it, but still). Now our young men can have
programs designed just for their specific needs and don't get me started on
the lack of funds for our young women....I love everything about this!!
A new program isn't going to change anything.The real problem lies
with adult leaders who are untrained and not engaged.In my stake less than
20% of leaders ever got trained.And i would assume that the rest of the
church isn't much different.Its entertaining to me to see people talk
about the church making a better program.Maybe its because they've
never seen the miserable home teaching numbers, been to a shoot-from- the-hip
elders quorum lesson.As long as basketball is going to be our mutual
program we may as well free scouting from our path of destruction.
Many years ago, while living in New England, I was called as Scoutmaster and
served in that calling for 12 years. It was an exciting and motivating time!
Because we were a small branch, later a small ward, my Bishop let me have boys
up to 18. This was a good move, because it gave a level of leadership to the
boys and the troop that is impossible to achieve if the troop is limited to
younger boys. Each Priesthood Quorum had its own patrol, and the patrol leaders
were encouraged to have separate patrol activities. We were a hiking and
backpacking troop, and both the boys and I loved the mixture of all ages in our
troop (including 11-year old boys who were a patrol and followed church
guidelines of camping overnight only twice per year). They met with us for our
monthly campouts, starting early on Saturday morning. Our stake provided
leadership and activities that the branches and wards didn't have, such as
canoeing.But, times change, and the church changes its policies to
keep up with the times and to follow inspiration from the Lord. It will be
interesting to see how well the older boys adapt to this new program, and it
will be interesting to see what happens to the younger boys!
I really don't think this decision had anything to do with political
correctness issues. It's more to do with the fact that kids lose interest
in the scouts. Also consider what happens if a majority of the kids in a ward
earn their eagle before 14. They pretty much don't do scouts anymore and
it is hard to coordinate the activities that will involve those still working on
their merit badges and those already done.
Hallelujah! This is a step in the right direction.65TossPowerTrap -
The YW don't play basketball every Wednesday night. The YW program has
flourished for years without paying millions for assistance from an outside
club. The men of the church are just as capable as the women of the church have
been, at providing high quality lessons and activities for the youth. The
Personal Progress Program is amazing. It could easily be adapted and used in
the Young Men's program. I hope this takes pressure off of all
the mom's out there that feel obligated to nag and cajole their boys, to
create spreadsheets to keep track of merit badges and detailed calendars to
document camping trips, and spend hours tracking down merit badge counselors to
sign off on their son's advancement - all for an Eagle Scout Award. I hope
it doesn't mean they will feel pressured to have accomplished it by the
time the boy is 14. People that love the Boy Scouts can continue
with the program, just like people that love softball can join a league, people
that love 4-H can form clubs and people that love books can form a book club.
The BSA wasn't created by the church and has nothing to do with the Gospel.
Awesome. By the time kids are 14, they have lost most interest in scouting
except for the outdoor activities like camping, river rafting, biking, etc. Curious though, if a kid hasn't earned his eagle by 14, then what
happens. Won't get much help on completing it from the ward scout troop I
I guess I kept expecting this when "gay" leadership was adopted by the
BSA. And no, I am not homophobic. However, with each passing year, BSA seems
to be moving further and further from the ideals that the drew the church to
adopting as a support system for its own standards generations ago. The
original concepts which urge scouters to be dutiful followers of Christ through
being courteous, cheerful, brave, kind --- doing a good turn daily, have been
pushed to the side in an attempt at not offending anyone. This strategy, in my
opinion, has been an all but fatal blow to the organization. What society needs
are people with convictions who are kind as well as courageous - in my thinking,
this is no longer the BSA.But regardless of my personal feelings, I
would have and still continue to support my LDS church leaders in their
decisions. I'm sure it is the right one, though not necessarily the
popular or easy one.
Outside of Utah anyway, or at least in the south, it was my experience that
these two programs (Varsity & Explorers) were never very well supported nor
implemented. The basic boy scout troop was hit or miss if the poor scout master
(YM 2nd Counselor) had any scouting experience or support. Then we had to
contend with members who were eagle scouts that grew up in the Utah area that
were highly negative towards the program because, I was told, in and around
Utah, scouting was shoved down a boys throat in such a way that it was a chore
and if they didn't get eagle then they weren't a good enough Mormon.
I'm amazed it held on this long since so many in the priesthood even went
so far as to complain that scouting was taking the young men away from their
priesthood duties. Over sensationalized media coverage the swayed more
uninformed members against the program too. It's a shame really, the core
values and lessons of scouting are amazing. Still I fear it is doomed
Robert Gates legacy: the destruction of Boy Scouts of America.
As an Eagle Scout, I have good memories of being a Boy Scout and I looked
forward one day to having my future sons to be Eagle Scouts as well. I realized
that once the BSA changed their policies to allow gay leaders that it would be
difficult for the Church to be involved. I think it is the right decision but
the transition will be tougher than expected. The Church's Duty to God
program is designed for this but I think that young men leaders will be forced
to change their planning of activities.
""In most congregations in the United States and Canada, young men ages
14-18 are not being served well by the Varsity or Venturing programs, which have
historically been difficult to implement within the church,""Considering the church has been doing a real bad job with Varsity Scouting
anyways... makes sense. But since our church troop is now comprised of 1/3 non
members.... this is a huge blow to our missionary efforts in the field.But hey.... its all about Utah members.... lets not worry about what's
going on in the real world and ways to bring young men into the church.
I'm dying to see what they plan on replacing it with since church sports is
all but gone. It's not like our Youth spend every weekday morning for an
hour in church... lets make Wednesdays just more seminary.... that will bring
the boys back in.My son is one of three members in his high school
of 2,000 students. I sure hope the church comes up with something for these
boys. Scouts was one of the few reasons many of these boys wanted to show up
wednesday nights. They get enough of the other churchy stuff.
I can hear a collective sigh of relief from mothers of young men sounding all
across the U.S. and Canada. Now we can stop hounding those reluctant 14 year
olds to finish their Eagle. YAHOO! For years the B.S.A. has drained
money from the LDS population and fed their professionals. NO LONGER. The
Church can help our young men so much better to prepare for their futures.
@ pragmatically, when you say "what is needed is a guarantee of moral
leadership," I'm sorry, but the same issue applies within the Church,
not just to Scouting and other organizations.
Unlike others who have written in, I had the privilege of having a great Scout
Troop with 3 of the 12 boys getting their Eagle before they were 14. Then I was
asked to be the leader of the Varsity and continued with the same boys. Did we
have fun? Did we teach and learn? Did we do exceptional things to help others?
Were the boys and their youth leaders involved and liked what we did? All of
the answers are yes. Did we play basketball instead of doing things related to
the Varsity program each week? No! When the boys reached 16, 9 of the 12 were
Eagles. It is leadership that has brought the changes in the
program to this point not social change in the older groups. Doing things
unrelated to scouting causes a disinterest in Scouting. Great leaders like
those who have expressed their disappointment today have made the program work,
others were not successful. The Ventures, age 16 to 18 has always
been a different kind of problem and the interest is low as evidenced by the
number receiving their Eagle at 18 where the pressure is to get it or not to get
it. The key thing is that a young man can attain Eagle if he
chooses to, no matter the age.
I am an Eagle Scout, and I support this change 100%. I've been hoping for
years that the Church would cut ties with BSA. The Church can operate its own
program more effectively and far less expensively than they have via BSA.
Long ago, at age 12, I and a couple of other boys that were not members of the
Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints participated in scouting as part of
an LDS troop. This was mainly because we had friends that were in the troop.
In the years since, I have seen many young men that were not members of the LDS
Church participate in LDS troops. It is hard for me to imagine why LOU
Montana thinks he "could not" participate in scouting because Mormons
dominated in his small town. Perhaps it would be better to say that LOU Montana
and others in his small town chose not to participate?
So why bother with Scouting for 12 -13 year olds? Many won't reach the
ultimate goal - becoming an Eagle Scout- something that is pounded into Scouts
from the get-go. There are some things here that don't make much sense.I am also concerned with the issue of further isolation of LDS youth
from the rest of the world. That's a topic that could be discussed in
detail, but there's no opportunity here, and I'm not sure the paper or
the Church really wants go there. If the fear is being around a few gay folks,
and the like, I actually find this decision to be erroneous. If the decision is
based on the increasing irrelevance of some of Scouting activities, it might
make sense. But overall, the increasing tolerance of Scouting to people is not
such a bad thing, and Scouting does teach some important principles. I
don't see the Church doing something better and which doesn't feel
contrived. I guess we will see.
This might be a death blow to the Scout program. With so many churches forming
their own scouting programs and scouting being slow to change with the times
(except the Gay questions) the Boy Scouts of America is coming to a close. The
Mormon Church with their large number of scouts has helped keep the organization
afloat. Boy Scouts have been suffering a slow death over the years because of
lower and lower membership and without the LDS church it will pretty much be the
I have mixed feelings on this. I believe that the scouting program can be a lot
of fun and do a lot of good for the young men who participate. I had a blast as
a kid but haven't enjoyed administering the program as an adult very much.
It really is a good fit from 11-14. Once the boys turn 14 they are much more
interested in sports, cars and girls than merit badges. I feel like the church
can build a better program that can still have a lot of fun without dumping
funds into the BSA coffers.The Venture an Varsity program
aren't a good fit because the boys don't want to do it and
haven't for quite some time.
I think there have been some good comments said. I do understand it may alienate
some people/groups, but over the years I have seen the older boys really not
being interested in Scouting anymore. Personally I would rather my boys learn
things more close to our religion. This move is simply to solidify our beliefs.
I'm anxious to hear more details of the Lord's program. Scouting was
great for our family and I'm grateful that all our boys are Eagles. I am
optimistic that religious freedoms will continue to allow us to live the
principles inspired by the Scout Oath, Scout Law. Motto, and Slogan. And we can
follow the words of the Savior and love sinners (we all are), but advocate
against sin. This move will help us to continue to follow the Savior in detail
instead of just hearing the one very important teaching - love everyone
(interpreted as love every choice). I love the inspired Church leaders.
Scouting always took the most fun things about the outdoors and made them boring
and lame. So glad I still found a love for outdoors even after scouts nearly
ruined it for me. And so glad that the church is parting ways with the scouts.
I'm thrilled. Good news! Three cheers! Long overdue. Such good
news.It has bothered me for years - the compensation salary of local
BSA leaders in Utah.It bothers me that families are burdened with making
such large donations to BSA.It bothers me that so much time is spent to
learn the program.It bothers me that so much less money has been spent on
the Young Women, even though their program is superior to the BSA program.I'm incredibly grateful the church has made this decision. Yes!
It seems that many are worried that nothing will be proposed to fill in the
void. I propose an arts program that might include tap, jazz and modern. Boys
will learn that their bodies are gifts from God and should be used to express
all of their emotions. Hey--it beats eating a raw trout! Ta!
To all the BSA haters out there -- the LDS Church did not abandon the BSA
program entirely.I've been in Scouting with the Church for over
30 years, and the truth is, boys who will become Eagle Scouts will be 90%
the way there by age 14 anyway.14-18 is time for the boys to WORK,
cars, sports, and girls...
Wonderful move! I am an Eagle Scout. All my brothers are Eagle Scouts. My four
sons are Eagle Scouts. My wife and I have served in most leadership positions
in Cubs and Scouts including Scoutmaster and Cub Master and Unit Commissioner.
We are a significantdonors to Friends of Scouting. I served on my
mission as a young men's president, (in Europe)where we could not use
the scouting program and our youth did just fine. Sorry to see the
institution of Scouting failing on the fires of political correctness;
attempting to please all, and in the end breaking free of its moorings.
When I was 15, our ward was selected as a pilot unit for the Varsity Scout
program the year before it was fully rolled out. We liked the high adventure
aspect of it, and were into it hard core. We continued to participate until 18,
and many of us got 3 palms with our Eagle too. I earned by Eagle when I was 16
and many of my friends were even older. Our leaders kind of discouraged the rush
to Eagle by 14. Funny thing is that those who got Eagle at 14 didn't have
much to do with Scouting after their Court of Honor. They kind of just did it to
get done with it. Two down sides is that if wards want to do high
adventure, they won't have access to BSA's high adventure bases.
(Never went to one, we had plenty of places to go to plan our own, so maybe not
a big loss.) The other is that the BSA insurance won't cover accidents to
older boys if they are not registered and the activity is not a Scout-sanctioned
event. Look for the lawyers of the Church and BSA fight over who has liability
on events that include both boys registered with BSA and those who are not.
As an Eagle Scout, I have to say I am happy with this change. The long-held
theory that becoming an Eagle Scout is a good indicator of a boy serving a
mission and marrying in the temple is waning at best, if it ever was true. In
our day, the young men need more spiritual training, that sadly does not always
come in the home. I do believe that Scouting has a place in the Church, and
keeping the program for those 11-14 as their official activity is great. And
those who have not earned Eagle by 14 or just want to keep earning merit badges
are still allowed to be part of the ward troop is a great thing too. Or maybe
older boys who want to continue Scouting will join troops not chartered by the
Church and see how Scouting works outside the Church.
My wife and I have hoped for this change for many years as we've seen the
level of scout leadership in the church diminish.I am an Eagle Scout
and my wife was very active with a troop before she was a member of the church.
Her troop was organized through a different church but had members that were
from all different religions and backgrounds. This taught her an extreme amount
about being tolerant and accepting of others. I was also part of a troop for
many years that was run out of the Elk's Lodge. That was the best troop I
was ever in. The Scout Master was there because he wanted to be there not
because he was called to be there. I know there are still great Scout Masters
out there but they seem to be few and far between. My wife has taught a church
Scout Master how to read a compass moments before he was to go and teach the
scouts. This is crazy. I think this will give a great opportunity
for YM to join troops outside of the church and gain some additional experience
and compassion for others and let YM leaders focus on training and teaching
young priesthood holders how to be great priesthood holders.
While I agree this is the right move for both the church and BSA in the long run
it still saddens me a bit. In my experience the church never implemented
scouting as it was intended. At least not in any of the wards I've lived
in. My boys really wanted a good scouting experience. We never found that in our
wards. Leaders showing up totally unprepared each week, basketball more often
than not, campouts only occasionally and half baked when they did happen. Nobody
really cared. For a time I was called as a scout leader. I tried, but doing it
alone was impossible, and with almost zero training I was ignorant how it was
supposed to run anyway.Now we're involved in a community troop
not affiliated with the LDS church and it is amazing. It's run as close as
possible to the actual BSA guidelines, and it's been a great experience.
Scouting is still relevant for young men. This troop has boys ranging from 11 to
17 years old and all of them are getting tremendous value from it. From what
I've seen BSA did not fail the church or LDS young men, the church failed
at implementation. Hopefully whatever they come out with next will work well. As
for me and my boys, we're sticking with BSA.
It will be interesting to see how this plays out in the future.
As an Eagle Scout, Former Scoutmaster, Current YM President and Father of 3
Girls, I applaud this decision.
I have been hoping and waiting for this for years and not just because of the
recent issues with transgender scouts and gay leaders. 100 years ago, learning
how to tie 10 different knots was important, back when one of the main roles of
12 year old young men was making sure the horses were properly tied up, but it
is mostly irrelevant now. I love the outdoors, the camp-outs, etc, but the
scouting program in general is so antiquated in many instances that it is not
relevant to modern life for our young people. In addition, the bureaucracy, the
inflated salaries of executives, the excessive costs of uniforms and all things
financially related to scouts (friends of scouting) have all been a really hard
pill to swallow for many years. Surely the LDS church will successfully
integrate the positive aspects of the program while leaving behind the negative
Now would be a great time to find a deal on trucks, trailers, outdoor camping
As father of three Eagles and grandfather of three more, I support this change
by the Church, however today I am going to make a larger contribution
financially to the Boys Scouts of America. Why? Because I believe in Scouting
and what it does for the youth of the Church and to whomever and wherever it is
We lived in Illinois for several years and the local council never fully
accepted the LDS scouts. They considered Mormon units as Eagle factories that
just turned out merit badges and otherwise missed the point of scouting. And
they didn't like the special arrangements we made to avoid Sunday swim
checks and camp set up. And they didn't care much for us camping as wards,
like we were somehow specialThe idea of leaders being
"called" was weird to BSA. They changed too much. And our committees
suffered from instability.That said, there were some non Mormon boys
in our troops...and they loved our brand of scouting.Uniforms,
badges and rank no longer have much appeal to teens these days. There must be
goals, but there are other ways to run a program. This will be interesting.
While I applaud this move I believe the Church should have done away with it
all. The 14-18 year olds were never really involved in Scouting anyway unless
they were making that final push for merit badges and Eagle projects. I
can’t wait for the “other foot to drop.” I will always support
the Church leaders and will continue to give to Friends of Scouting until all
ties are severed.
I'm not dropping Scouts for my 3 boys. Some of my best childhood
experiences occured in Scouts. Scouts helped me prepare for life, learn new
practical skills, build friendships, strengthen my beliefs/testimony, and become
a better person. I don't agree with all their organizational changes the
past few years but it is still nationally recognized and unchanged at its
core.Looks like I'll be spending a lot more time down the road
with the Methodist or Baptist Scout troop.
@Laura Billington:The last paragraph said that older boys can
continue with Scouting through the ward troop to pursue rank advancement and
earning merit badges, if they and their parents want. The fact is that many
older boys loose interest in Scouting.
I once heard the statement that when a boy turns 14 his mind is dominated with
the 3 senses 1) Sweat (sports) 2). Oil (cars) and 3). Perfume (duh). As a past
leader in all capacities with YM it was very challenging to implement the proper
programs with 14 -18 years old. Hard to implement when the interest just
isn't there - - though we tried.I feel this is inspired and the
This was expected and it would have been surprising if this stand wasn't
taken. It's a shame that this was forced upon us. All 4 of our boys loved
scouting and 3 became Eagle Scouts. But we totally support this move now.
Long overdue. There is Nothing that the BSA offers that the Church cannot do
much better in accordance with our spiritual and physical development goals for
the kids. It should also teach the BSA leadership that bad decisions have
A wise move. I'm nearly to my 3rd eagle scout son and proud of them but
scouting doesn't work well past 14. I also see through my daughters that
they feel they don't get the same opportunities for adventure and
experience that the boys receive under the umbrella of scouting.
Bummer. Scouting isn't for everybody, but it has been great for my sons.
I fear the new program will be lame. I guess basketball every Wednesday night
isn't too bad.
This is positive. Scouting needs to be independent, and the church can create
it's own indoctrination programs.
I am an Eagle Scout, and all of my sons are EagleScouts as well. The
program has served us well, and I have seen it do great things for other
participants, both scouts and leaders.Thank you, BSA!
Unfortunately one of the root causes of lack of success with Varsity and Venture
Scouts is not acknowledged. Based on my thirty years of scout leadership
experience one of those causes is lack of dedication and time investment by
local adult leaders in those programs. They usually think 5 minutes of
last-minute, weekly preparation, plus sporadic attendance on mutual nights is
enough. If those older-boy leaders would look at their 12-13 year-old
counterparts and how much time they spend, they'd have a better clue on how
to successfully implement Varsity/Venture programs. But alas, not
fulfilling Church callings has been and will be an epidemic in the Church and so
I'm not very hopeful that any new program will meet with success without a
massive restructuring to include holding adult leaders more accountable for
spending more time with YM, and pushing for closer, mentor-like, one-on-one
interactions vs. the normal group-teach that YM leaders are used to. Most disheartening will be the celebration by those who have hoped and prayed
for this to happen, when due to their own lack of dedication they have been one
of the primary causes of the ineffectiveness of Varsity/Venture.
@Speculum rerum, see the LDS newsroom.They always have an extensive
fact sheet anytime a new announcement goes out. They couldn't ease into
this and softly. They had to announce it at some point and, unfortunately, due
to the political climate, they have to do so without a lot of warning.
Otherwise, undue speculation runs rampant and causes more problems for everyone.
When you conjoin a religion with a social program, the tensions begin.When I was a kid, there were Baptist scouts, Jewish scouts and Catholic scouts
in the same troop, all together for the fun of it. They even shared holidays to
learn about their buddies religious traditions. It bred tolerance and
understanding.Now apparently Mormon troops are a monoculture with
few outsiders included. Sadly, what I witnessed disappeared. Suspicions arise
and the glue that holds us together as a society continues to dissipate.Maybe the LDS leaving Scouting is the right answer for LDS dogma, but it
is exactly the wrong answer for the American society. Build bridges, don't
tear them down. And don't be afraid of "the other". You might
even learn a thing or two.
In my small childhood town, myself and others could not join Scouts because it
was dominated by the Mormon church.Later in life my wife was asked
by her church to be a Scout Leader because no one wanted to do it.I
gladly assisted her.
The article says the church is also looking to replace Cubs and Boy Scouts.
Where in the church news release and FAQ's does it say this? Deseret News,
please cite the source.
Thank goodness. The Church's involvement with the BSA causes far more
problems than it does good. The BSA is no longer a positive influence upon Young
Men. It is past time for it and the Church to part ways.
what is needed is a guarantee of moral leadership in scouting. There is no such
guarantee, and younger scouts are more vulnerable than older ones. Parents
leave too much to 'organizations' to influence their children. We
are looking at yet another lawsuit in our city of abuse by scout leaders. You
place your sons and daughters in places of questionable safety and who will be
judged for that.
This will result in a much more effective approach to the needs of all Young Men
at the Unit level. No more wrangling between YM, Leaders, and parents about how
to run a program that meets the needs of "Scouters" and
"non-Scouters". Now, we can just focus on Young Men / Aaronic
Priesthood holders, and how best to help them learn and mature spiritually,
physically, and emotionally and to find and magnify their unique talents and
abilities. Many of the same kinds of activities (especially outdoor activities)
will be used for this purpose, but without all zelous focus on specific
mechanics and requirements (as if all YM were cut out of one conforming mold)
and the outdated trappings (staring with the war era, military uniform).
A good first step.
As a former Boy Scout Leader 4 times over, I applaud this decision and it just
goes to show you how much the gospel is true. I was a Assistant Cub Scout
Leader, Assistant Boy Scout Leader twice and a Boy Scout Committee Chairman in
Provo, Utah before moving to Davis County. I still remember the
day I received an email from the Boy Scouts of America about taking a survey to
vote on the subject of homosexuality and standing in front of Boy Scout Leaders
and not telling them which way to vote but that they should vote and feeling
deeply hurt that the Boy Scouts of America made this decision and then going to
my Bishop and speaking to him about this. He said, Bobby the Boy Scouts
can't go against the Strength of Youth pamplet and then I felt better. Like, I've said several times, the Church and the Gospel are
not one and the same. The Gospel does not change but the Church does. If the
Church changes it will align itself with Gospel principles. What a blessed day
Good riddance! Boy scouts is a secular organization with paid professionals, yet
it gets free labor from lds members because of "callings" to serve. It
uses lds wards to solicit money for friends of scouting, while young women who
want to participate in a similar program are forced to sell cookies. And now
bsa is praised for encouraging leaders who are openly gay to supervise teenage
boys in close proximity on overnight campouts.
As in other matters, taking the time to read the article enlightened my
understanding and persuaded me that this decision is motivated by love, wisdom
and everything good. I fully support this decision.
40 years ago when i turned 12, I bailed out of scouting. Who knew I was so
visionary at such a young age? I was right all along and preached this for
years but it wasn't always met with joy from other ward members. Some
acted as if receiving an eagle scout award was some sort of life saving
ordinance. Keep the campouts but lose the uniforms and the
structure. Incredibly lame with no impact on ones spiritual progress. This
continues to be an antiquated program.
I applaud the move for the LDS church to pull back from Varsity and Venture
Scouting. I had many disagreements over the years of the so called super
scouters who thought they could dictate how things were suppose to occur in the
Young Men's program. Even when reminded they were an auxiliary and it was
the Bishop's call they would still try and dictate. I also had many run
in's with how the scout camps ran and the payments of the scout camps. I
finally had to organize our own camps. The boys and the church will be much
better off running their own program.
My son loved the Scouting program at his LDS troop in Maple Valley. He earned
74 merit badges and finished the requirements for his Eagle award at the age of
14--the experience was invaluable. His scoutmaster was organized and really
cared about "his" boys. For some, he was a closer father figure than
their biological dads. I cannot imagine the loss to the boys which
will come because they will be discouraged from continuing scouting after age 13
by joining troops sponsored by non-LDS groups.No matter how
it's sugarcoated, this is a response to the BSA's admission of gay
leaders. As in, somebody somehow is afraid that even knowing that some
leaders, somewhere, are gay will convince their boy to "become gay".
What exactly is this new program for 14-18 boys? My stake, ward and ward counsel
are completely unaware of any changes and directions for 2018. The ward counsel
works on a 6 month planning schedule and the stake a 3 month funding schedule.
We have had no adult training in any program comparsble to scouts. Is the plan
to just drop scouting without a replacement in the short term? We need
detsils and structure now!
As a recent convert, I was amazed and thrilled to learn that the LDS Church was
so involved in Scouting. I became an Eagle Scout (OA Member and Explorer)
thirty one years ago, and have watched political correctness and decades of
mismanagement erode Scouting. It is unfortunate for Scouting that they have
made their choices, and caused this breakaway by such a strong advocate for
Scouting. The LDS Church is making the right move, because it is based on the
development of the boys, as compared to the BSA changing policy to remain
popular within closed door gatherings.
Phew. I can stop worrying about being called to Scoutmaster.
I'm an Eagle Scout, and I fully support this decision. Once the boys get
past 14, the Boy Scout program doesn't work. My boys and pretty much every
other boy I've seen is interested in different things at 14 and beyond.
It'll be interesting to see the implementation of the new program and to
see what's coming for the younger boys, and girls, too. The BSA made a
choice to go the direction it's going. Now we'll see how it does
without the Church. Hopefully for them those who pushed the liberal agenda step
up and and fund their the BSA.
Interesting Move. Although I do agree that Boy Scouts does teach young men good
skills, the church is in a position to teach the same skills and to have a
similar program to the Boy Scouts. Boy Scouts has dropped off the last few
years and have compromised their values. The Boy Scouts values no longer put
God first when their oath says they they will do their duty to God and their
country. God comes first as He always should.
Hallelujah! Let the dancing and celebratory festivities commence!
High Time! Let's get the younger boys out ASAP. I have worked at all
levels of scouting for many years and various capacities. Scouting left the
Church behind many years ago; Church Leaders have been very patient, but now is
time to "pull the plug".
This is a brilliant move. IMO, emphasis on Duty to God is far more important and
meaningful to young men than their focusing on merit badges and rank
It will be even more ideal when ages 12-13 bow out as well. The ever-increasing
rush to Eagle at younger and younger ages, and at lower and lower levels of
expectation, has unfortunately devalued the the rank for many years. Hopefully
local church leaders will not push through the 12-13 year olds in an attempt to
'get it done' even more quickly now that the handwriting is on the
If our sons were still teenagers, we would have them participate both in the
Church activities AND the Scouts.
I've never been one to push for the LDS church to drop scouting but I have
to say from my experience that this move makes sense - I don't think I have
ever seen a church Venturing crew that really did anything with the program and
the Varsity teams were rarely any better. This may bring about the end of all
Varsity scouting as most non-LDS scout units allowed 14-year-olds into the
Venturing program and didn't bother with a Varsity program. That may become
the only scouting model with the church pulling out of Varsity.While
I have never desired to have the church leave Scouting behind this move makes
that seem inevitable at some point.
My burning question:Was this the desired end result of people
pushing for more "tolerant" Scouting? Do they really want more people to
be involved with Scouting or do they just hate the idea of someone, somewhere
disapproving of their lifestyle?