Should Churches Stop Sponsoring Boy Scout Troops?

Experts weigh in on whether or not churches should disassociate with the youth organization over its gay-members policy.
Should Churches Stop Sponsoring Boy Scout Troops?
Image: Debbie Lund / iStock

After the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) permitted gay youths as members (but kept its ban on gay leaders), the Assemblies of God said its churches should withdraw support. Southern Baptist Convention (sbc) leaders advocated the same, but the sbc rejected a boycott. The majority of Scout units are sponsored by faith-based groups.

Should churches stop sponsoring Boy Scout troops? Christian leaders' responses are posted below, on a scale starting with "yes" and ending with "no."

"We encourage any of our churches in the bsa to now join our own boys' program, Royal Rangers. Were I a pastor, I would ask whether there are other scouting programs that offer a viable alternative to the bsa where moral ambiguity is removed."
George Wood, general superintendent, Assemblies of God

"It's certainly something we felt our local church should do. The writing's on the wall; when they redefined their definition of morality in the Scout oath, it was contrary to biblical teaching, and we had no choice."
Bryant Wright, pastor, Johnson Ferry Baptist Church; former SBC president

"We don't yet know what the implications will be for troops as a result of this flawed attempt at compromise. Churches should be ready with alternatives, should they eventually be in a situation of choosing between gospel witness and Scout sponsorship."
Russell D. Moore, president, Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission

"There are many reasons churches should be suspect of the BSA, including the insidious relationship of 'God and Country' that it promotes. But hopefully the triune God the churches worship can have a greater impact on the troops they sponsor. It may be worth the risk."Dennis ...

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