Many of you know that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS) has been a chartered partner of the Boy Scouts of America for more than a century. I’ve been grateful for our long-standing chartered partnership that has provided countless boys across the country with character- and leadership-building experiences through our programs. Our movement has benefitted greatly from the thousands of Scout leaders who have selflessly served over the years in Church-sponsored units.
While Scouting remains a beloved program for many LDS families, this week, we joined the Church in announcing that it has decided to pursue programming to serve its increasingly global community and will no longer charter troops after January 1, 2020.
Our organization wishes the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints all the best in this transition. As I’ve always said, I am supportive of all youth development programs that teach character development and leadership, and I am certain that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints will develop programming that does just that.
Currently, around 425,000 youth in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints participate in our programs and we anticipate that many of them will want to continue in Scouting, alongside the Church’s religiously affiliated programs. For those Scouts who are currently members of Church-sponsored units, we will work with local councils to provide support with resources and guidance to ensure a smooth transition to community-sponsored units as we approach the end of 2019. And for those that had looked forward to Scouting for their families in the future, you will always be welcome, and we will be proud to see you continue the tradition of Scouting for many generations to come for your families.
At the same time, I am confident that our organization is well-positioned to grow by providing families more options for their children to benefit from the incredible character-building experiences we provide. Through our Early Adopter program for Cub Scouts, we’ve already seen a tremendous initial response. I look forward to bringing Cub Scouting to both boys and girls in all of our councils later this year and to expanding the reach of our Scouting program in 2019. There is much for our movement to look forward to and together with all of you, we will continue to provide a values-based foundation of character and leadership skills for more Scouts in the future. Thank you for making that possible.
Yours in Scouting,