Re: Who Can't Join BSA?
Settummanque, the blackeagle (waltoml@WKUVX1.WKU.EDU)
Thu, 24 Aug 1995 11:29:55 CDT
James Hermann <jhermann@AIS.NET> writes:
>Yes, the BSA refused to allow a Wiccan church to charter an Explorer
>Troop, thereby refusing to allow Wiccan to qualify for recognition of
>their religious award. Seemingly, the BSA Executive Board also "may have
>spoken from ignorance".
Utah, those that already (I believe it includes Susan, Jim and Norman)
have explained the Wiccan religion to you is correct. The Wiccan
faith is VASTLY different from "witchcraft", black or white. It is
this fact and ignorance which has generally prevented Wiccan churches
from becoming chartered partners for BSA units.
The basic problem is the perception that the Wiccan Church has, as
evident even in the postings answering your question. While there's
some folks aware of the religion, and others (like me) that know of
personally Wiccan youth and adult members in the BSA, the BSA's
Membership and Relationships team has steadfastly refused to allow
Wiccan churches the same right that a Hindu mosque has: the right to
establish and charter a Cub Scout Pack, Boy Scout Troop or Team, or
Explorer Post or Ship to serve the membership of their church and of
other youth in the community.
Imagine how the BSA would have to react if they did charter a unit.
The local coummunity would be "outraged", because "a group of witches
were allowed to start a troop up". Parents would have one MORE reason
not to put their sons in Scouting, and the local Council would have
problems in raising monies for their Council because "they were
allowed to start a Troop".
Now, Utah, substitute the words "black" or "gays" for the word
"Wiccan" in my posting, and you can see that in one situation
(blacks), the BSA evenutally bended; in the other (gays), the BSA
There's a national association of Wiccan churches that's appealing the
professional staff's decision to the National Executive Board and it
is expected to come up for discussion during their fall meeting in
Finally, to further go with Brother Randy's statement that the BSA's
Declaration of Religious Principles says that a Scout has to "believe
in something", that's NOT good enough. They have to believe in
something or someone HIGHER than themselves. I can believe in myself
and NOT be allowed membership; but I can believe in Jesus, Allah, God,
or The Goddess (or as Don Izard argued with me back a couple of years
ago, the devil) and be allowed to become a Scout.
Man, has life become more and more difficult!!!
Kathie's comments about using our great resources is right on the
target as usual. The BSA recognizes 33 religious groups with
religious emblems and there are 14 or so others that are recognized as
religious partners but whom do not have religious emblems associated
with their church. Many of them, for instance, the African Methodist
Episicopal (AME) Church have their Scouts to earn either the Baptist
or the Methodist religious emblems.
Hope this helps!
Settummanque, the blackeagle... (MAJ) Mike L. Walton (
co-Owner, Blackeagle Services ___)_
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