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Statement by the United Methodist Church


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I just received a call from my SE helping a unit that was previously chartered by a UMC unit.  They are looking at different CO options and are considering our CO (just different branch).  The SE said the unit has questions so he was helping check on my CO.  Who insurers our trailer? (No one).  What meeting space are we provided.  (None). What storage space are we provided. (None). How much funding are we provided.  (None).  I told my SE that our CO signs off on adult leader apps and charter agreement and then we volunteer for their fundraisers.  He said ok, he will relay the message.  

I expect several UMC units will see the brutal reality of what most COs provide... Ink on paper a few times a year.  Sad to see the loss of good COs.

 

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I've been lurking for a number of months on Scouter.com.  I finally took the plunge and registered. Understaffed LCs can't support the administrative requirements associated with an LC-sponsored

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@gpurlee  so your council sends out a letter saying units can stay with their current CO,  then they send a letter saying never mind that, and now they're saying in a 3rd communication that you can??

 

ask if there is an option to transfer to another council!

 

@Eagle1993  maybe the units should ask the SE the same questions if they are sponsors by him.   The answer is likely not none, it's we send you a bill. 

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This is girls being allowed to join Cub Scouts all over again.

They announce something is going to happen with apparently no clue on how it will be implemented.  Leave it up to the Unit volunteers to figure it out all the while they are blowing smoke and telling us how great things are.

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53 minutes ago, PACAN said:

maybe the units should ask the SE the same questions if they are sponsors by him.   The answer is likely not none, it's we send you a bill. 

The only benefits I see of a council CO vs paper only CO:

- We spend about 8 hours a year volunteering for our CO fundraisers.  We could do our own fundraiser or even something else during that time.

- Easier to track down adult leader and charter approval signatures

Our CO raises thousands of dollars a year off of our scouts labor and gives us nothing.  There are worse COs than councils out there.  

 

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4 minutes ago, Eagle1993 said:

The only benefits I see of a council CO vs paper only CO:

- We spend about 8 hours a year volunteering for our CO fundraisers.  We could do our own fundraiser or even something else during that time.

- Easier to track down adult leader and charter approval signatures

Our CO raises thousands of dollars a year off of our scouts labor and gives us nothing.  There are worse COs than councils out there.  

 

In the case of the Methodist Church, I suspect you will find any of the established units have a long history of a safe and free meeting space, and often much storage as well.  We have been our church basement since the building was dedicated in the thirties.  With the slow deteriorization of the congregation, we have been allowed more storage options as well.  Most importantly, almost 100 percent of the actual church membership loves the Scouts and when we interact, they show it both in financial sharing and more importantly simple friendliness.  Since it is top heavy with elderly, though slowly getting a bit younger, the kids often experience the "grandparent" experience.  Good for everyone.

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Clearly there are many many sponsors who are super supportive of scouting.

My friend knows of three UMC units that are no more due to lack of scouts.  Their Packs folded amd without a Pack, the troops were gone in two years.

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9 minutes ago, PACAN said:

Clearly there are many many sponsors who are super supportive of scouting.

My friend knows of three UMC units that are no more due to lack of scouts.  Their Packs folded amd without a Pack, the troops were gone in two years.

Some of that is also due to the changes in the church memberships, especially with older units likeours.  In the thirties through early sixties, we had huge youth involvement in the church, and the units reflected that too.  As the population shifted away from our end of the city, the youth went with it, and now the largest units are on the opposite end of the town.  And the income levels also shifted that way so that our draw slowly became from the lowest income areas and oldest housing.  Now we struggle as was here noted, but we have managed barely to keep the pack.  We had a very large feeder for years at a school, but they moved to a church, then folded not long afterwards.  Getting the cubs to visit to transition is hard, especially with the numbers and struggle with progam due to barely enough leaders able to do outdoor even at the minimum.  Out history is a plus, as we are the oldest unit in the council by far, but that only goes so far, especially with the odd historical disintruest it seems in society in general.  Finally of course, the biggest problem now is the CYA fears in the larger Church with the CO attacks by the black feathered ones.  JMHO of course.  Just note that, depending on your spiritual beliefs, there has never been a perfect human, and since all groups are made of us, that is a challenge.  

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Council Scout executives have received notice from the national territory (office) that UMC units will automatically remained chartered through the end of this year. Previously this extension was through October. 

The communication indicated that discussions continue between the UMC and the BSA task forces which may lead to modifications in the proposed affiliation agreement.

It is clear that the task forces have received a lot of feedback from councils, UMC churches and units and there is an effort at the national level to respond.

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31 minutes ago, gpurlee said:

Council Scout executives have received notice from the national territory (office) that UMC units will automatically remained chartered through the end of this year. Previously this extension was through October. 

The communication indicated that discussions continue between the UMC and the BSA task forces which may lead to modifications in the proposed affiliation agreement.

It is clear that the task forces have received a lot of feedback from councils, UMC churches and units and there is an effort at the national level to respond.

If they remain chartered through December that means that on paper the 2022 membership numbers will include UMC units. Otherwise, another precipitous drop from the 650,000 March number could be a problem. It was probably assumed that things would be settled by now and that the earlier October deadline couldn't affect the plan. 

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@gpurlee  Interesting wording  "may lead to modifications to the proposed affiliation agreement"    I still read this as the UMC won't be sponsoring units???  Also did anyone pick up on the BSA Tasks forceS.  Wonder how many there were/are?

@yknot  You are probably right although the extension is also likely because the UMC and BSA put something out without fully vetting it.   Wonder how many UMC scouts they estimate dropping?

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Pacan- at this stage things are in flux. I would not read too much in until we learn more. 
Also, the plural task forces referred to the BSA group AND the UMC group that are meeting together. Not sure if there are any other subgroups. Just to clarify.

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2 hours ago, PACAN said:

Wonder how many UMC scouts they estimate dropping?

Unlike when the LDS units dropped and most of their membership left the UMC situation should be more of a change in CO status with most of those units and scouts remaining in the program.  I am sure we will lose a few units and scouts, but not the mass drop in enrollment that some are fearing.

 

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I've been lurking for a number of months on Scouter.com.  I finally took the plunge and registered.

Understaffed LCs can't support the administrative requirements associated with an LC-sponsored unit.  This makes the UMC Affiliation Agreement a non-starter.  Furthermore, an understaffed LC can't help a unit find a new Chartering Organization should the unit elect to retain its UMC meeting/storage space via the Facilities Use Agreement.  Prospecting and signing up a new CO will likely require some significant District Exec support, especially now that more national organizations (Elks, VFW, Kiwanis, etc.) are discovering what the traditional Charter Agreement requires of responsible COs.  

The LC for the units our church charters (101 years for the Troop) has no DEs, one back office employee, and an acting Scout Exec (for the last 15 months) who has a day job in Texas as the Western Area Exec.  If our church doesn't act as CO, these three active units will likely disband.  Given the bankruptcy-driven turmoil affecting Scouting, I suspect that many units face the same choice between two unworkable agreement formats.  What's sad is that our church understands and takes the CO responsibilities seriously.  Many of the Troop's adult leaders have been church members, some of the youth attend our church, and the COR has been an active Scouter and former LC employee.  

The fact that BSA and the UMC Ad Hoc Committee on Scouting "continue to talk" indicates that our units/LC aren't the only ones facing these unworkable choices.

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2 hours ago, EEEagle74 said:

I've been lurking for a number of months on Scouter.com.  I finally took the plunge and registered.

Understaffed LCs can't support the administrative requirements associated with an LC-sponsored unit.  This makes the UMC Affiliation Agreement a non-starter.  Furthermore, an understaffed LC can't help a unit find a new Chartering Organization should the unit elect to retain its UMC meeting/storage space via the Facilities Use Agreement.  Prospecting and signing up a new CO will likely require some significant District Exec support, especially now that more national organizations (Elks, VFW, Kiwanis, etc.) are discovering what the traditional Charter Agreement requires of responsible COs.  

The LC for the units our church charters (101 years for the Troop) has no DEs, one back office employee, and an acting Scout Exec (for the last 15 months) who has a day job in Texas as the Western Area Exec.  If our church doesn't act as CO, these three active units will likely disband.  Given the bankruptcy-driven turmoil affecting Scouting, I suspect that many units face the same choice between two unworkable agreement formats.  What's sad is that our church understands and takes the CO responsibilities seriously.  Many of the Troop's adult leaders have been church members, some of the youth attend our church, and the COR has been an active Scouter and former LC employee.  

The fact that BSA and the UMC Ad Hoc Committee on Scouting "continue to talk" indicates that our units/LC aren't the only ones facing these unworkable choices.

Welcome, lurker!!

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