Re: Re: LDS Scouting
Jim and Robin VanderRoest (VANDERROEST@DELPHI.COM)
Thu, 4 May 1995 08:06:37 -0400
A couple of things which have come up in this discussion
call for a brief response.
1. Female unit leadership in LDS units is limited because policy
of the Church prohibits mixed gender camping for youth and because
the Church has designated Scouting as the activity arm of the
Church for young men. In the Young Men's program, only adult men
are called as leaders, just as in the Young Women's organization,
the leadership is female. As the eleven year old scouts are part of
the Primary, it is possible for a female ASM for the New Scout Patrol
(Blazers), _but_ she couldn't camp with the lads, so it is a rare
situation. However one of the LDS Troops in this area has a
female CC who has been through Woodbadge (a good ol' owl, too!),
does a super job with the Troop, and is in demand to use on staff
of training events in the District and Council.
2. Why doesn't the LDS Church officially sponsor Girl Scouts?
My _guess_ is that, as I understand GSUSA, the units are owned by
the national organization and not by the sponsoring local entities.
I know that around 1918, the Church experimented with using Campfire
for the Young Women. The feeling was that it didn't work out and so
it was dropped.
3. The congregation (Ward) leadership has a lot more direction
of the Troop than does the IH of the typical chartered organization. A lot
of times the weakness or strength of an LDS unit is directly related
to how much support or interference there is by the leadership. If the
Bishop views the Troop as an Eagle factory or as a nuisance, the
program suffers. A unit whose IH understands and supports Scouting
will usually have long term trained leaders, which is a key to effective
4. Are LDS units standoffish? Maybe. One way to cure this is for
the District and Council to recruit LDS units into program staffs,
especially training. Aloofness is more likely a product of unfamiliarity
than not wanting to be a part of things. But especially in areas outside
of the mountain west, budget constraints may limit a unit's ability to
be involved in events. LDS Troops are not allowed to do fund raising
for unit program. This means in the real world that funds are limited.
Hope this answers a few questions. But I'm afraid that this wasn't very
\_____/ :Jim VanderRoest
( O O ) :Kalamazoo, Michigan
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City