A Scout is Reverent
The Scout Law: “A Scout is Reverent”
Reverence is a deeply-held, constantly evolving set of beliefs and ethics. For some, it is embodied by organized religion. For others, reverence is represented by a respect for others and the world around us. Reverence is as much about respect for one another’s beliefs—or lack thereof—as it is about a Scout’s own beliefs.
The Boy Scouts have said as much in their own teaching about reverence.
From the BSA’s charter and bylaws:
“The activities of the members of the Boy Scouts of America shall be carried on under conditions which show respect to the convictions of others in matters of custom and religion, as required by the twelfth point of the Scout Law, reading, “Reverent. A Scout is reverent toward God. He is faithful in his religious duties. He respects the beliefs of others.” (emphasis added)
Consistent with the BSA’s policy, Scouts for Equality believes that showing respect towards the beliefs of others is consistent with the Scout Oath and Law. We expect all of our members to show reverence and respect for all religious beliefs and philosophical positions.
We believe Scouting is a force more powerful than one person or one religion. By welcoming people from all religious beliefs and philosophical positions, including non-theistic ones in Buddhist, Unitarian, and other traditions, Scouting can better fulfill its vision of preparing youth in America to become responsible, participating citizens and leaders.
It is our position that regardless of where you are in your search for truth and meaning, Scouting has a lot to offer to every young person. We feel the BSA would be wise to follow the lead of the GS-USA by dropping the explicitly theistic requirement without fundamentally changing the religious nature of the organization.
For more information, please visit the Religion section of our FAQ page.