Life is beautiful and imperfect, a source of wonder and a challenge so complex that it’s good to pause from time to time and check our perspective and priorities against eternal truth. Jim Daly’s blog, Daly Focus, is full of daily insight and wisdom that promises to help you navigate today’s culture.
To the shock and disappointment of many of us, the Boy Scouts of America released a statement yesterday indicating the possibility of changing its policy that prevents the participation of openly practicing homosexuals.
According to press reports, the 100-year-old organization's board will meet next week at which time the matter will be debated and likely decided.
In an official statement, the Scouts stated:
This would mean there would no longer be any national policy regarding sexual orientation, and the chartered organizations that oversee and deliver Scouting would accept membership and select leaders consistent with each organization’s mission, principles, or religious beliefs. BSA members and parents would be able to choose a local unit that best meets the needs of their families...The policy change under discussion would allow the religious, civic, or educational organizations that oversee and deliver Scouting to determine how to address this issue.
In other words, the Boy Scouts of America, an organization that has historically required its members to take an oath to be "morally straight," appears to now be favoring moral neutrality.
Neutrality is often an attractive option, especially when the goal is to not offend. But in this case, I'm reminded of what the great humanitarian and political activist Elie Wiesel once wrote about trying to remain neutral when it comes to moral affairs:
We must take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented. Sometimes we must interfere.
At stake in this debate is not just the golden brand of the Boy Scouts but most importantly the character and safety of the boys involved.
I realize that what I’m about to say might upset some people, but I hope we’re mature enough to discuss such important issues in straightforward and even stark terms.
My concern about the proposed change in the Boy Scouts has less to do with the idea of boys who identify as homosexuals and almost everything to do with the homosexual men who will be charged with leading and protecting the boys.
I have a good friend who was abused by a homosexual Boy Scout leader when he was twelve years old. The abuse triggered a horrific series of events that sent the boy reeling. His life was nearly ruined. I realize that most homosexual males are not pedophiles but can we not face facts and ask why we would deliberately put a youngster in a heightened position of risk? Is it worth it? Of course not.
One of the great tragedies of the last few decades has been the abuse of young children by religious leaders. Of course these cases are the exception and most priests and pastors are trustworthy. But one of the reasons the abuse occurred in the first place was because many of the involved clergy were homosexuals and the responsible governing bodies frequently have refused to acknowledge there’s any correlation to child molestation, especially concerning boys.
This subject has generated a significant amount of concern and understandably so. My friend and Focus board member, Dr. Al Mohler, summed up the situation and the broader challenge to Christendom on his blog last evening:
Faithful Christians are left in the excruciatingly difficult position of maintaining fidelity to moral judgments revealed in the Bible while the culture around us races in the opposite direction. While the Boy Scouts use language like “morally straight,” the church uses its own language of sin, grace, and obedience...The new policy to be adopted by the Boy Scouts of America represents a revolution in what that esteemed organization understands “morally straight” to mean. We should not let that pass without taking notice of what that revolution will eventually bring about — nothing less than a reversal of what morality is understood to demand.
Let’s pray that the Boy Scouts of America will stand strong and resist the social and political pressures that are currently leaning into them with great force.
I hope you’ll consider asking the Boy Scouts of America to continue creating safe, secure environments for their youth members. Urge the group to maintain its current selection process for finding adult leaders. The people who will be voting on this issue need to hear affirmation of the historical foundations of scouting. They need to know people are with them.
If you wish in the coming days to share your comments directly, please feel free to use the following options:
1.) firstname.lastname@example.org (this is the email address of the BSA National Office)
2.) Email your local Scout Executive
3. By calling the BSA National Office at 1-972-580-2267.
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My son is currently working on his Eagle project. I am saddened by the headlines and the possible change. (I feel it is about the almighty bottom line, $$$) I ask anyone reading this article to pray, send emails, and call your local scout shops and higherups. If we as christians would stop being passive and do something, I think it could make a tremendous difference. One more note. If this passes, the pressure will be on the individual troops and that is unfare. I believe it is the Boy Scouts of America's job to protect and set and example "morally straight"
The culture is becoming ever more evil, and unless local Scout leaders get engaged and let BSA national leadership know just how stupid this decision would be, it will get implemented. And let's face it. This will just be the first of many policy changes that will eventually turn the Scouts into a co-ed secular institution. In 10 years, they will be called "Scouting America" or some other genderless term, and will have stripped all references to God from their charter and literature.
Homosexuality is the apex of human arrogance in immorality and will be the downfall of this nation just as it has been the downfall of many a great empire.
FYI - BSA does allow homosexual boys as members. It is only as leaders that they are not allowed. They try very hard to protect our kids and our moral values. That is why they are persecuted and attacked. I would rather see them shut down than cave in.
It is my hope and prayer that the Boy Scouts of America remember thier oath to remain "morally straight" as their board debates their own future.
As a parent of three young boys, the eldest of whom is eligible for Cub Scouts beginning in April (and until they made this announcement, I had been lining up the necessary formalities with the load Den leaders to join), I am dismayed and disgusted with what the Scouts are considering. The number of Christian parents who will abandon Scouting and seek alternatives is huge compared with the small number of homosexual "parents" who might join if the national organization abandons its principles.
If they make this mistake, hopefully the Southern Baptists or Catholics will create a similar organization that adheres to Christian values. Parents in the homeschooling community, which make up a large percentage of Scout leaders, will choose to disassociate rather than follow the Boy Scouts off a moral cliff.
THE BEGINNING OF THE END OF A CENTURY OLD PILLAR IN OUR COUNTRY.
PRAY FOR COMMON SENSE TO BE COMMON AGAIN
Thanks for lovingly yet boldly sounding the alarm. Calling the number!
NO CHANGES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! STAND UP WHAT IS RIGHT!!!!!!!!!1
seriously? how deep in denial ARE you people?
What a sad story!!! America!!! May the LORD wake you up from your sleep!!!
I can not believe that the Boy Scouts of America is caving in to pressure from the gay agenda. How utterly disappointing! You can be sure none of the boys I know will be in the Boy Scouts if this really happens. I guess we really are in the end times.
I too have concerns about the safety of boys under gay leadership but how can you apply that argument to lesbian leaders? At any rate, I think this is once again about money and corporate contributions to the BSA. If private citizens would just contribute to fully funding scouting, these kinds of proposals would be unnecessary.
When calling the 877 number above it just picks up and hangs up. I have tried several times.
We need to lovingly stand up for what God's Word says. Will try to contact BSA with the other ways suggested. Thank you for sharing.
I sent this to the email address above
:Scouting has been a wonderful experience for my grandson, now age 15. He has enjoyed music growth through the regional band as they play for community events and in nursing homes. He has experienced travel, camping, learning, serving....under the supervision of adult men away from his home and family.
My concern with this considered change is that the security of safety will be compromised (if not in reality, in "what if") regarding all these experiences. Additionally, "what if" he is assigned a gay tent or cabin mate....this creates an uncomfortable, possibly, tho not inevitable, situation which renders what should be a great adventure to a tenuous time.
Bowing to the pressure is not what Boy Scouts is about. Principles are principles....they have served well. The proposed change is not just a change of one part, but will necessarily change the complexion of Scouts altogether. "Doing my duty to God", being morally straight" will not remain intact for these are not compatible with "gayness". The words may stay, but the truth behind them will not.
This change will devalue the scouting experience for ALL the boys and young men and many parents. It introduces a "walking on eggs" atmosphere where there should be solid ground security.
Please reconsider any notion of this risky policy change. Regard seriously what his kind of change in other venues of our society has produced. Our moral values are plummeting. Scouting will never be the same.
Thank you for hearing this concerned grandmother.
I do believe BSA will be endangering the organization itself more than boys. Someone is bound to start a Christ-centered organization for boys similar to the American Heritage Girls organization... http://www.ahgonline.org/