Chad Miller believe it is his responsibility to surround his son with men who will model Christ-like examples of love and acceptance. He wonders why his son’s Boy Scout Leaders don’t feel the same.
Two of the three emails I received began, “It is with a heavy heart [that I send this message]” The first came on May 30, 2013, just 7 days after The Boy Scouts of America (BSA) National Council approved a resolution to remove the ban on gay Scouts. The resolution to remove the restriction was sure to create a significant exodus of Scout Leaders, but I was naive enough to believe that it surely wouldn’t affect our pack.
Less than a month later, I received the second email. This one from my son’s Den Leader. I admit it took me by surprise.
The third and final email from a pack leader whom I have only exchange a cordial greeting with summed up the position of the remaining (former) pack leaders by declaring all summer activities were cancelled. Very few committee members remained and many of the leaders, including the author of the email, were leaving effective immediately.
Having read these three emails, and learning the stance of the men whom I entrusted my son to, it is my heart that is heavy. It is my responsibility to ensure that I surround my son with men who will model a Christ-like example of love and acceptance. With regards to his first year in Scouts, I have failed.
I do not fault these men for their decision to remove themselves from the organization. I cannot, however, accept the reason for their exit.
One of the leaders stated that his departure was due to his families “belief and duty to God.” Another quoted scripture and suggested that the values of BSA were no longer aligned with their own. Unfortunately, I imagine the majority of emails and letters that were received by parents across the country outlined similar messages.
As a Christian myself, I am disheartened that men and women, who are to lead our youth in character development and spiritual growth, would cloak their prejudice and judgment under the appearance of religion. No wonder so many people will never know the freedom and fulfillment of a relationship with Jesus Christ.
I would challenge the men and women who have claimed their faith in a loving and accepting Savior to re-evaluate their true reasons for removing themselves from the BSA after it was announced that membership could not be denied to youth because of sexual orientation. I would further remind them that the Bible doesn’t end in Malachi, the final book of the Old Testament. Instead, the Bible continues by sharing the truth of a compassionate and empathetic savior who walked with sinners while disputing the religious leaders of the time.
If we are to truly be disciples of Christ, we should welcome all and model love and acceptance of the person, though it doesn’t mean we approve of the sin. Is homosexuality more of a sin than adultery, pride, lust, lying? If they are to base their decision to exclude sinners, I would challenge leaders of the organization who are without sin to cast the first stone (John 8:7).
It is my hope that this will stimulate conversation, and perhaps a little self reflection or your own beliefs. What are your thoughts? Join the conversation in the comments below.
Originally published on RewritingDad.com