National Executive Board
Scouts of America
"Be it resolved that the following reaffirmation of the position of the Boy
Scouts of America relating to duty to God be, and hereby is, enacted and
that the bylaws, rules and regulations, and literature of the Corporation
this reaffirmation accordingly.
"In 1985, America celebrated the 75th anniversary of the Boy Scouts of
America. Since 1910, 80 million Americans have subscribed to the Scout Oath
and the Scout Law, which have stood the test of time.
"The National Executive Board of the BSA proudly states, through its mission
statement, that the values which the organization strives to instill in
young people are those based upon the Scout Oath and Scout Law. A Scout
pledges: 'On my honor I will do my best to do my duty to God and my country
and to obey the Scout Law...'.
"The first BSA HANDBOOK FOR BOYS, published in August 1911, declares that
'...no boy can grow into the best kind of citizen without recognizing an
obligation to God' (page 215).
"The latest edition of the BOY SCOUT HANDBOOK, published in 1990, reads: 'A
Scout is reverent toward God. He is faithful in his religious duties. He
respects the beliefs of others' (page 561).
"While not intending to define what constitutes belief in God, the BSA is
proud to reaffirm the Scout Oath and its declaration of duty to God.
"The following statements are additional information on the BSA position:
"The BSA has always been committed to the moral, ethical, and
spiritual development of our youth. Scouting is not a religion but duty to
God is a basic tenant of the Scout Oath and Law.
"Scouting does not seek to impose its beliefs upon others who do
not share them. Virtually every religion is represented in Scouting, and the
BSA does not define or interpret God. That is the role of the Scout's
family and religious advisors.
"Scouting respects those who do not share its beliefs and it
would not ask others to alter their faith in any fashion in order to
become Scouts. They too are free to follow their own beliefs. Rather the
BSA membership believes that the principles set forth in the Scout Oath and
Law are central to the BSA goal of teaching the values of self-reliance,
courage, integrity, and consideration to others. Scouting may not be for
everyone, but for eight decades, Scouting has provided meaningful programs
and adventure to more than eighty million young people in the United
---Approved, BSA National Executive Board, June 12,