SBC doesn’t call for Boy Scout exodus

A highly anticipated resolution condemning the Boy Scouts’ new membership policy affirms churches and individuals that sever ties, while calling for greater engagement by those that don’t.

By Bob Allen

The Southern Baptist Convention stopped short of urging churches to sever ties with the Boy Scouts of America in a June 11 resolution condemning the organization’s recent decision to drop its ban on Scouts who are openly gay.

The non-binding resolution expresses “continued opposition to and disappointment in the decision of the Boy Scouts of America to change its membership policy” and called for the removal of Scout leaders who pushed for the policy change.

It affirms “the right of all families and churches prayerfully to assess their continued relationship with the BSA” and expresses “support for those churches and families that as a matter of conscience can no longer be part of the Scouting family.”

Meanwhile it encourages churches and families “that seek to remain in the Boy Scouts to impact as many boys as possible with the life-changing gospel of Jesus Christ.”

The resolution urges churches that choose to end sponsorship of Scout units to continue ministering to boys by expanding the Royal Ambassador ministry, “a distinctively Southern Baptist missions organization to develop godly young men.”

It also cites “well-founded concern that the current executive leadership of the BSA, along with certain board members, may utilize this membership policy change as merely the first step toward future approval of homosexual leaders in the Scouts.”