Southern Baptists Vote Not To Severe Ties To Boy Scouts.

There were predicitions by countless conservative Christian pundits Boy Scouts of America were doomed by their policy of accepting gay scouts.

Now, both the Mormons and Southern Baptists have voted to continue allowing their churches to be used for Scout troops.  This is yet another case of conservative Christians saying no, no, no, and then saying yes.

Between the no and yes answers, other denominations made known their availability to the Scouts.  There is a lesson here.

The lesson is, conservative churches need the Scouts more than the Scouts need conservative churches.  It’s a sign political posturing of churches is mostly much about nothing.

Part of the Christian political message of recent elections has been, “We conservative Christians are a force to reckoned with.  We are important.  Ignore us at your peril.”  Drawing such lines in the political sand are for the sophisticated and experienced, not the ham handed.

The Southern Baptist Convention called for boycotts of Disney and Ford Motor Company.  The results were jokes.

It is hard to bring accountability of churches and denominations.  Thus, for long periods of time leadership can make big mistakes, even embarrassing mistakes, and no one is fired.

The Catholic clergy keeps preaching about the sin of artificial birth control.  But, the laity pays no attention.  No one is fired.  Better management would require clergy either stop preaching about its sinfulness, or, convince laity not to ignore them.

Southern Baptist Convention is now beginning to see membership may demand accountability on the gay scout issue.



16 Responses

  1. StanB

    Sorry Jon, you missed one possibility. By interacting with the “gay” scouts isn’t it possible that some may decide they aren’t gay. Since scouting starts in kindergarten in some towns, I really have to wonder if those scouts even have a sexual identity yet. Most guys go through a “girls…….Yuch” stage but I never did, but I think I am the exception, not the norm.

    1. Stan 1:14 Correct. I don’t know how or who decides who is and is not a “gay scout”. There was a policy against “gay scouts” so someone must have decided who was to be kicked out.

  2. Going to this link caused my anti-virus protection to light up like a holiday tree. Lots of Trojan horses at this site. No match for my firewall, but beware.

  3. Brad

    It’s important to remember that religions are political organizations. At the end of the day, they do what’s in their best political interest, regardless of what they might preach at the pulpit.

  4. Wanna B Sure

    What is the deal with the Boy Scouts anyway? It is a separate corporation not related to any specific church. A secular organization with goals of self improvement. They are not an extension of any church. They do have their meetings where space is available, sometimes in churches, sometimes in local community rooms. There is no connection whatsoever. They don’t join the Scouts because they are gay or hetero, why should it matter? If a Scout leader is a sexual predator, and misbehaves, that is a secular matter. Let the cops take care of it. We have had scouts meet in our church in the past, and they are welcome to do so if and when space is available. (right now, they are not really functioning here). We also have the blood drive with the red cross, clothes drives, and AA groups meet there at a mutually agreeable date and time. It makes no difference if they are gay, atheist, of a different denomination, or if they have green blood. They are people with their own special private issues, and in these settings it isn’t for them or anyone to differentiate. Quite often churches facilities are used for other support groups; cancer survivors, child abuse, mental health meetings, etc. Again, non-church functions simply using the facilities. Like the Scouts. It is not a church matter. It is a non-issue. If a blood drive was held in a Catholic hall, would you expect them to refuse Lutherans from coming in? Hell no. It is not joining the church for goodness sake, it is not church related. Nor is the Scouts a church. Do the Baptists and others think the scouts are a legal auxiliary of their church? I have never heard of such foolishness. It should be a non-issue.

  5. Wanna B Sure

    I would like to ask, and if anyone knows just what these so called “ties” are that Jon references? Is it use of the facilities, financial support, or club sponsorship, or something else. I’m not aware of any significant “ties”. Again, the Scouts are not an auxiliary of any church. The Scouts don’t have any sway on the Baptists, nor the other way around. There could be one possible exception; if a community of 100% Bible Baptists had a Scout Troup in their mix, and an orthodox Lutheran or Catholic child moved in and wanted to join, they may resist. For them, that would be just as bad as a gay guy.

    1. Wanna 12:40 re: What are the so called ties

      You raise a good point. I like it that your church makes it’s meeting rooms available to a variety of groups without doctrinal requirements. The chruch probably loses money doing this by not charging or not charging enough. I recall with sadness my local church, First Presbyterian, turning down a gay adult group in the early 1970’s.

      What I know about this is that some denominations focus a lot on the national, BSC, and local parishes on forming troops. Thus, donations from denominations to BSA is significant. I recall reading a few years ago over half its budget came from a few conservative denominations. I know that Mormons really focus on the Scouts. A local church often has a troop. The troop’s projects are related to the local church. Accomplishments of individual scouts include completing training in how to lead worship services. I attended lots of Eagle Scout ceremonies as Mayor and saw this first hand. The troop’s finances and the BSA depend, then, on both individual chruches and the denomination. I understand, Southern Baptists have a similar relationship.

      That said, those denominations and local churches perhaps over estimated their own importance in BSA. When the BSA was confronted with its dilemma, it had to throw the gay issue overboard to save the ship. Those denominations that had seen their views hold sway saw things had changed. I would guess lots of BSA governing board members came from these denominations,supported the BSA and worked to bring their denominations around.

  6. entech

    HOUSTON—The Southern Baptist Convention voted Wednesday to approve a resolution that expresses the denomination’s “opposition to and disappointment in the decision of the Boy Scouts of America to change its membership policy” to allow openly-homosexual members. The resolution does not require churches and families to sever their ties< with the BSA, though it does ask that they “prayerfully assess their continued relationship” with the organization. If they continue their partnership with the BSA, the resolution asks churches and families to “work toward a reversal of this new membership policy.”

    Yes Jon what are these “ties” I only see it used once in the article (twice if you count the caption to the picture) and once in your Title.

    I think we have been through the thing about headlines and relevance to content as opposed to just to attract attention so I think it fair to say you are not referencing ties, just taking a bit from the article.

    1. I think there are actual ties that stem from donations to BSA and formation/support of Scout troops, and, perceived ties. The strength of these are seen differently by different people. That is why some denominational leaders predicted BSA would fail if it opened its membership to gay scouts. They perceived the link and influence of their churches was stonger than it actually was, but they thought it was there.

      1. Wanna B Sure

        In other words; They voted to continue financial support of the Scouts, both with the denomination, and individual congregations. The same would be true with the LDS I would guess.

      2. Wanna B Sure

        However, each individual church is free to disregard participation, and is not held to compliance with the SBC. (An association, not a synod.)

  7. Wanna B Sure

    They must have a different breed of Scouts in the south. Never saw anything like this up here.

  8. Wolfy32

    Interesting, ironic though, given that I was raised in a highly conservative christian home. My sister and I weren’t allowed to join the boy scouts or girl scouts because it was a secular organization not a religious one. I instead had to learn that stuff from the church “boy scout” equivalent, of which my dad coordinated canoe trips, camping trips, and etc for me. They had their own badge earning system etc. But, it was very unorganized and as soon as I grew out of it, my dad stopped working with it and I joined a youth group.. Same with my sister… Boy scouts was considered too secular for me to join.

    1. 4:23 “My sister and I were not allowed to join boy scouts or girl scouts.”

      Our son didn’t take to a couple of large troops where the leaders liked to organize trips to jambarees and such programmed events. He found a scout home with a couple of old nonconformist guys who disliked scout programs, reciting the scout oath, etc. When they went camping, they went to someone’s farm field and made stuff from scratch. For trips, they went to Canada and visited scout troops there.
      This troop was so secular, they poured a little wiskey in their coffee after the scouts were in bed.

      When I attended scout events sposored by the Mormons, it was very religious. Mixed bag.

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