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  • Methodists Ask for Delay

    see letter here: http://www.gcumm.org/

  • #2
    It sounds like they are against the proposed change so they UMC will not be making any changes whether the proposed local option is approved or not.

    No delay needed.

    My $0.02

    Comment


    • #3
      Schiff; They are neither for or against according to what I read. But, as they pointed out, if the change is made, it would/should have no effect on the units, as that is already pretty much what we did anyway. Notice the second to last sentence; "the reason WE ENDORSED this model........."

      " Once they made the decision to propose this change there are basically two ways this could have been implemented. One would have changed the national standard to force all charter organizations (in our case, local churches) to accept gay scouts and gay leaders. The choice they made was to move that decision to a local level. The reason we endorsed this model of implementation is because it allows your local church to continue to operate exactly like it is operating today. You choose the leaders, you recruit the scouts, the leadership of your troop and pack reflects the traditions and values of your faith community."

      Comment


      • #4
        The Executive Council of the Southern Baptist Convention (which is supposed to be the 6th largest religious denomination among COs) passed a resolution (full text here: http://juicyecumenism.com/2013/02/20/southern-baptists-implore-boy-scouts-to-hold-firm/) on February 19th calling on the BSA not to change its position on homosexual membership. They don't come right out and say they will pull their COs, but the last paragraph of the resolution, which says "RESOLVED, That, irrespective of the decision of the National Council of the Boy Scouts of America, we continue to lift up and commend Royal Ambassadors as a Christian values-based organized that, for 105 years, has taught Christian values to boys in Southern Baptist churches, educating at least two million boys in biblical missionary principles and winning tens of thousands to faith in Christ through chapter meetings, Royal Ambassador camps, and other Royal Ambassador activities," seems to imply that they will be likely to pull their charters from BSA and transfer their resources to their own in-house youth organization, waiting in the wings.

        A doomsday scenario for the BSA would be if many of the denominations that have traditional moral codes (LDS, Southern Baptist, Roman Catholic, Evangelical, Orthodox Jewish) pull out of the BSA due to the Local Option being passed, but the potential secular chartering orgs that pulled out in the past due to the BSA's stance against homosexual and atheist membership (military units, schools, etc.) can't or won't step up to be chartering orgs for the orphaned troops because the Local Option is still insufficient to satisfy their political stances, or the stances of their own national headquarters and unions. National would then have to bow to pressure, ban any troops that have local policies against homosexual/atheist membership, and remove charters from any remaining religious groups that don't allow homosexual or atheist membership but have tried to stay in the BSA, further alienating remaining religious COs, if the Local Option doesn't work out.


        Comment


        • AZMike
          AZMike commented
          Editing a comment
          See post #6, below, ghjim. The United Methodists, who appear to have some serious issues with the Local Option, accounted for 11,078 COs in 2011 (I can't find stats for 2012). My limited understanding is that the Methodists tend to be politically and theologically liberal, so that was surprising to learn. Those 11,078 troops are just behind the LDS (largest at 37,882 units) and just ahead of the Catholics (8,570 units). The next largest group after that are the Presbyterians at 3,663, Lutherans (themselves in schism over the homosexual issue) at 3,902, Baptists at 4,099, Episcopalians at 1,193, United Church of Christ at 1,221, Christian Church/Disciples of Christ at 1,199, and Community Churches at 1,060.

          Civic COs are the American Legion (2,589), Lions International (2,378), Rotary (1,362), VFW (1,103), Kiwanis (943), Elks (794), Boys & Girls Clubs (610), YMCA/YWCA (367), Optimists International (254), and the Loyal Order of Moose (259). Many of the above saw some heavy negative % changes from 2000-2011 (the Moose went from 430 COs to 259 in 1 year. Other civic groups can be viewed here: http://www.scouting.org/filestore/media/ES_Chartered_Org_Trends.pdf

        • ghjim
          ghjim commented
          Editing a comment
          At least may we all live in interesting times.

        • Merlyn_LeRoy
          Merlyn_LeRoy commented
          Editing a comment
          The current local option proposal only allows for gays, not atheists, so that still wouldn't allow for military units or public schools.

      • #5
        Skeptic your looking at the wrong file on that website. Click on the 1st picture

        Comment


        • #6

          The letter is from Bishop James E. Swanson, Jr., the President of the General Commission on United Methodist Men.

          It states,

          "Since BSA announced a possible change in their membership policy dealing with homosexuality, our office has received many phone calls and emalls. We realize in the United Methodist Church there are people who have differing opinions on this issue. There are many questions of legal implications, and questions about how this new rule would be managed in our local churches. Many see this change to be in conflict with their understanding of Scripture. Many have stated they will terminate their relationship with BSA, as a leader and as donors. Many have expressed anger that our church was not brought into this discussion as this change was being considered. A few have told us they support this proposed change by BSA; however, overall, the responses have been overwhlemingly against the proposed change.

          "This potential shift from BSA places GCUMM's primary goal, our core value - expansion and retention - at risk. If approved, scouting programs would decrease, and new programs would be harder to begin due to the uncertainty this proposal has generated."

          The letter asks that the new membership proposals (the "Local Option") not be implemented at this time, as more time is needed for the 50 United Methodist Annual Conferences and the thousans of United Methodist churches to research what the change might mean, and politely requests that the faith communities that make up over 70% of the units and 62% of the membership in the BSA be kept better informed of such contemplated changes in the future. Bishop Swanson asks that the letter be forwarded to all voting members at the BSA's annual meeting.

          Comment


          • #7
            The Methodists are recommending delay in the implementation, not rejection of the new policy. They need more time to prepare.

            Comment


            • #8
              "I want rustlers, cut throats, murders, bounty hunters, desperados, mugs, pugs, thugs, nitwits halfwits, dimwits, vipers, snipers, con men, Indian agents, Mexican bandits, muggers, buggerers, bushwackers, hornswogglers, horse theives, train robbers, bank robbers, and Methodists!"
              -- Hedy Lamar, um I mean Hedley Lamar

              Comment


              • #9


                " Many see this change to be in conflict with their understanding of Scripture. Many have stated they will terminate their relationship with BSA, as a leader and as donors. Many have expressed anger that our church was not brought into this discussion as this change was being considered. A few have told us they support this proposed change by BSA; however, overall, the responses have been overwhlemingly against the proposed change."


                Gee, I'm not seeing a lot of warm-n-fuzzy coming from the ranks of the Methodists; a somewhat liberal (at least in recent times) religious body. Their roots are showing, and they along with other religious folks are just not very comfy with the notion of a youth-serving organization giving tacit approval to homosexual behavior. IMO, the overall number of church-sponsored units who are really excited about the local option is slim-to-none.

                Comment


                • #10
                  "...the Methodists; a somewhat liberal (at least in recent times) religious body."
                  Heh, heh, a Baptist minister once informed me that a Methodist is merely a Baptist who can read. I asked him how that one went over from the pulpit? He just laughed and laughed.

                  Comment


                  • WAKWIB
                    WAKWIB commented
                    Editing a comment
                    Well...I thought it was pretty funny too, and I'm a baptist who can read very well, thank you.
                    The Methodists were quite fiery, fundamental, and evangelistic in the olden days. Perhaps they, and some other denominations took a wrong turning when the went to the whole "United" thing. Maybe it would have been best to stick with the "local option" when it came to doctrine and practice. Like you are found of quoting, Pack, "religion isn't about bringing people together." LOL

                • #11
                  The Methodists voted at their convention in May of last year to continue to maintain language in their doctrine that says homosexuality is incompatible with Christian teaching, 61% to 39%. They also voted down a similar proposed change from gay rights advocates that would have said that Methodists could acknowledge their differing views on homosexuality while still living together as a church.

                  I'm not a Methodist, but I acknowledge their commitment to social justice and the work of men while John Wesley and William Wilberforce in the abolition movement and in prison reform. The views of many Methodists is that commitment to social justice is not the same as normalizing sin, apparently.

                  Comment


                  • #12
                    Originally posted by WAKWIB
                    Gee, I'm not seeing a lot of warm-n-fuzzy coming from the ranks of the Methodists; a somewhat liberal (at least in recent times) religious body. Their roots are showing, and they along with other religious folks are just not very comfy with the notion of a youth-serving organization giving tacit approval to homosexual behavior. IMO, the overall number of church-sponsored units who are really excited about the local option is slim-to-none.
                    The warm and fuzzy is here: http://www.gcumm.org/news/2013/01-31/gcumm-general-secretarys-statement-on-bsa-proposed-changes

                    What they are asking for is a delay so they can study the ramifications and figure out how to implement the change. They are not, like the Southern Baptists, lobbying for a no vote on the resolution.

                    Comment


                    • #13
                      So here is my question. All these religious groups except maybe the LDS sponsor GSUSA troops and they allow Gays. So what is the difference?

                      Comment


                      • #14
                        The chartering partners own the BSA units. I don't think the same is true about the GSUSA units.

                        Comment


                        • #15
                          They may allow the GS to meet there...but they don't own and run the units, to my knowledge.

                          Comment

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