Daily Updates

June 12, 2013

Southern Baptists expected to address Scouting

HOUSTON — The Southern Baptist Convention is expected to take a stand against the Boy Scouts of America’s acceptance of gay members at the denomination’s annual meeting in Houston this week.

Leaders of the nation’s largest Protestant denomination had fought against the change and warned Scouting leaders that allowing gay members could mean Southern Baptist churches would no longer sponsor troops.

Resolutions for the annual meeting were to be presented Wednesday and many observers expect one of them to address the Boy Scouts’ new policy in some way.

Because all Southern Baptist churches are independent, the denomination cannot force a church to drop ties with the Scouts. However, churches occasionally are kicked out of the convention for practices considered incompatible with Southern Baptist beliefs.

Former Southern Baptist President Bryant Wright recently announced that the church where he is pastor, Johnson Ferry Baptist Church in Marietta, Ga., would stop sponsoring a troop after 13 years. Wright explained in a video posted on the church’s website that the problem with the new policy is not that it would allow gay Scouts, but that it would not allow Scout masters to counsel those Scouts to “live a life of sexual purity according to Scripture.”

The new policy, Wright said, “condones homosexuality as being consistent with the Scout oath of duty to God and moral uprightness.”

In all, about 70 percent of the 116,000 Scout units in the United States are sponsored by religious organizations. Many of those groups have decided to continue sponsoring troops. That includes the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, which sponsors more Scout units than any other organization, serving about 430,000 boys.

The United Methodist Church is the second-largest sponsor serving about 363,000 boys. The denomination’s National Director of Scouting Ministries, Larry Coppock, is sending a letter this week that advises leaders to continue sponsoring troops.

“There are disheartened and disappointed people on both sides of the membership issue, but it is time to move forward and continue to promote scouting as a youth ministry,” he wrote.

On Tuesday, a delegate to the Southern Baptist Convention meeting made a motion asking the group’s Executive Committee appoint a task force to look into Scouting alternatives. That motion was referred to a committee, but leaders could still offer a resolution on the issue Wednesday.

The Southern Baptist Convention already has a youth group for boys called Royal Ambassadors, and there could be a call to expand that program.

———

Online:

http://www.sbcannualmeeting.net/sbc13/

 

1
Text Only
Daily Updates
  • In Other News, April 15

    April 15, 2014

  • Deal signs bills assisting veterans, military families

    Gov. Nathan Deal today signed into law legislation that allows any court with jurisdiction over criminal cases to establish veterans court divisions (Senate Bill 320).

    April 15, 2014

  • Police: Suspected killers wore GPS devices

    Two convicted sex offenders dutifully checked in with police every month and wore their GPS trackers around the clock — the rules of parole that are designed to tip off authorities if a freed felon backslides.

    April 15, 2014

  • Questions linger year after Boston Marathon bombs

    A surveillance video shows a man prosecutors say is Dzhokhar Tsarnaev placing a bomb near the finish line of the Boston Marathon, just yards from where an 8-year-old boy was killed when it exploded.

    April 15, 2014

  • 10 Things to Know for Tuesday

    Your daily look at late-breaking news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Tuesday:

    April 15, 2014

  • Aw, geez, 'Fargo' is on TV with Billy Bob Thornton

    After failed attempts and broken dreams, by golly, someone went and put “Fargo” on series TV.

    April 15, 2014

  • Little sign of progress as Obama, Putin speak

    Speaking for the first time in more than two weeks, President Barack Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin showed little sign of agreement Monday, with the U.S. leader urging pro-Russian forces to de-escalate the situation in eastern Ukraine and Putin denying that Moscow was interfering in the region.

    April 14, 2014

  • Drivers in California crash had clean records

    Both drivers in the fiery Northern California crash involving a FedEx truck and bus full of students had clean driving records.

    April 14, 2014

  • Post, Guardian win Pulitzers for NSA revelations

    The Washington Post and The Guardian won the Pulitzer Prize in public service Monday for revealing the U.S. government’s sweeping surveillance programs in a blockbuster series of stories based on secret documents supplied by NSA leaker Edward Snowden.

    April 14, 2014

  • Police: Utah mom admitted to killing her 6 babies

    Authorities say a Utah woman accused of killing six babies that she gave birth to over 10 years told investigators that she either strangled or suffocated the children and then put them inside boxes in her garage.

    April 14, 2014 1 Story

AP Video