37: Adventures in Scouting

Troy hosts a panel discussion about the Scouting program in Mormonism. He’s joined by Brandt, Jerilyn, and Mark.



  1. John

    It is correct that they exclude atheists. Its a safe assumption to say this comes from the idea of God as the source of morals and that without that belief, you cannot be “morally straight.”

    I’m surprised you didn’t cover the newest proposal and support from the LDS church that would allow gay scouts but not gay scout leaders.

    Reply May 01, 2013 @ 08:49:06
    • Heather C.

      This episode was recorded before the news came out about the “decision.” The plan when this was recorded was to put out a second episode discussing the decision after the vote in May. That’s still the plan. But, you’re right, the cat is kind of out of the bag already.

      Reply May 01, 2013 @ 09:33:03
  2. Caligirl2012


    My son is in your Quorum. He loved Cub Scouts but hated Boy Scouts. After the crossover, he had no desire to go to Wednesday night activities because it is all about scouting!! You are right, the church needs to come up with a different program for the boys who are anti-scouting.

    Reply May 01, 2013 @ 10:15:48
    • brandt

      I hear 2 things:

      1.) The church is going to stay behind the BSA decision (based on their latest statement, it seems like an endorsement). So that seems to imply they’ll stick with the BSA program.

      2.) However, I’ve heard rumors that the church MIGHT take a step back from the BSA based on the vote (this mostly from sources around the Great Salt Lake Council, who have posed opposition to lifting the ban), and potentially shifting to an international model where Scouts isn’t as emphasized (I’m thinking of my time in Korea)

      Reply May 01, 2013 @ 12:27:59
  3. partyallday

    The church is like a barking dog in the middle of your wet dream. They (the church) have correlated themselves and the scouting program to a point where the square peg just won’t fit in the round hole anymore. They need to divest themselves of the program and allow those who want to participate to either form large LDS based troops or join community troops. I have spent years as a scoutmaster and can tell you that it takes money to run a quality troop. One fundraiser for camp and equipment doesn’t do it….if you want to play you gotta pay. I have personally spent thousands of my own dollars to make our troop fly (this was my choice because I had two boys in the program). I am in the mid-west region in a avery “kick ass” council….the LDS faction for the most part is an embarassment to the council. The church has to put it’s bigger umbrella over the BSA’s umbrella which makes the scouting professionals cringe….the council is constantly making new policy changes based on the LDS’s fickle nature…I won’t go into details. Eleven year old scouts need to be put with the 12 year olds and be allowed to go to camp…keep the fire hot and fanned when they are 11 and you will see more excitement when they are older. I love the scouting program and have had soo many great experiences but the church is like a barking dog….

    Reply May 01, 2013 @ 12:20:42
    • Caligirl2012

      I wish the church had more scout leaders like you instead if those “called” to that position and hate it. My youngest, in his school ran scouting program, loves scouting because they are always going and doing new things. Tomorrow they are doing a service project at their school and at the end of the month they are camping on the other side of our state. They have been scuba diving, swimming, field trips to local museums, visits to fire and police stations, camping, hiking and doing service projects in the community. Compare that to Cub Scouts at the Ward level where the program actually sucks!! Also, almost every boy in his class is in scouts and between school and scouts he has made some real close friendships with some great boys. And he got to join scouts early – did not have to wait until he was 8 years old! The scout leaders at school WANT to be there and it shows. My husband is in a leadership position at the school pack, even though he refused two Cub Scout callings prior.

      I don’t see the Church changing the program anytime soon. It is too bad because the non-LDS scouting program is great!!!!

      Reply May 03, 2013 @ 20:38:10
  4. Brian

    Great show everyone! It was interesting to hear about the differences between mainstream scouting and LDS scouting, the latter being the only type I’ve ever known. I’m looking forward to the next episode and hearing what everyone thinks about the BSA’s new policy. Frankly, as “a gay” and an Eagle scout, I think it’s awful. How can you possibly hold the view that being gay is tolerable as a youth but not as an adult? Instead of coming out and declaring, “No gays at all, we think they’re perverts and pedophiles” or “yes, gays will now be accepted as leaders and members,” we get this half-ass, pathetic attempt to pander to both sides of the argument. Grow some balls BSA.

    Personally, I think this decision is worse than their previous stance because it’s so blatantly dishonest. Also, I think it sends the message to gay scouts that the adult version of themselves is not a tolerable role model, and they need to change. Whereas before if you asked a scout leader the reason for the ban, the answers remained ambiguous, but now we see the BSA’s bigotry in it’s true colors.

    Yeah, it’s good that kids will now be allowed, but it’s clear through the decision that the organization doesn’t recognize the fault of it’s own policy, and is merely pandering. I want the leaders of the BSA to change not because of political or social pressure, but simply because it’s the right thing to do.

    Reply May 03, 2013 @ 19:40:20
  5. Caligirl2012

    My youngest son is in his schools Cub Scout program. I can tell you that it is run very different compared to the Ward level. I know in his pack they do more activities (scuba, camping, service projects,etc). When the oldest was in the church’s Cub Scout program, they met at the Ward building and did silly things. I know it takes money to do those things which is why they sell popcorn during the fall. Overall, my youngest son is getting a better experience with scouting.

    Reply May 03, 2013 @ 20:18:34
  6. jeanikins

    I was making notes while listening before the darn thing stopped again. Don’t know all the voices yet but in response to scouting in Canada in the Church. The program is more like the British version I think with Mormonism thrown in of course.

    Notes: Queen’s Scout Award in Canada not Eagle Scout.
    Don’t do the Arrow of Light stuff. Don’t know if you get into that due to it stopping.
    One Canadian Melchizedek priesthood holder is equal to two Americans – really that is all we had at girls camp. Agree with Jerilyn about how they try to pass off things before camp. We had to use flint and dry grass etc. though.
    Go take a specific hike Troy lol.That part left you open for a joke Troy. I want to hear the rest and hopefully Heather can fix it up.

    I don’t think that in Canada there is the pressure and prestige that you guys have from the scouting program. I have never known a girl to whom having a Queen’s scout to date or marry was in any way considered. Scouting is seen as kind of geeky actually.

    Lots of the boys in the Church hated scouting but were forced into it because it was part of the YM program; they sneak out and go to the Mac’s store because they don’t want to do the weekly stuff even if they did enjoy camps. One of my sons was ‘physically’ abused by two scout leaders because he was not interested and was messing about. One ‘straight armed’ him in the face, the other scout leader picked him up by his jacket front and threw him down on his tail bone. I did nothing…

    Reply May 04, 2013 @ 16:07:15

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