Christian Alternatives to Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts Sees Membership Spike as BSA and GSA Take a Nosedive
by Julia Pierce, Worthy News Coorespondent
(Worthy News) – Christian families across the US say they are “disappointed and dismayed” by the changes in the culture and policies of the Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts. What once began as programs that helped to raise up young men and women of strong faith and godly character have become more casualties bowing to the growing idol of godlessness in American society, the families say.
Due not only to COVID, but also financial struggles, lawsuits, and the policy changes the United States had seen in recent years, such as including girls in the Boy Scouts and allowing homosexual youth and adults leaders to participate, membership has fallen from about two million in 2019, to about 762,000 in 2021.
There are alternatives to BSA and GSA which claim to be “unapologetically Christian” whose founders say they seek to instill faith and truth into the next generation of youth.
Trail Life USA describes its program as a “Christ-centered, boy-focused, character leadership and adventure organization.” The Trail Life oath begins, “On my honor, I will do my best to serve God and my country, to respect authority…”
Trail Life USA CEO, Mark Hancock, told CBN News, “The Boy Scouts kind of lost their way; they were an organization that has given us presidents and senators and astronauts and community and civic leaders. They had a magic sauce; they had the magic for how to grow boys into good strong men, but they began to abandon those traditions…” Hancock continues, “… we want an organization that understands that boys and girls are different..”
Hancock says that Trail Life USA saw rapid growth last year, with a 70% increase. They now have over 30,000 Trailmen across all 50 states, and the emphasis on Christian faith continues to remain as strong as ever.
American Heritage Girls, the sister organization to Trail Life USA, is every bit as Christ-centered and focuses on character development based on Christian faith and morality. Founder, Patti Garibay says, “We were started in 1995 as a result of the changes in the Girl Scout program.”
After 13 years of volunteering in the Girl Scouts, Patti felt the need to develop AHG when the Girl Scouts removed or replaced God from their recited oath, and Patti’s attempts to affect change in her troop and in the organization proved fruitless.
Twenty-six years later, AHG troops now operate in all 50 states and in 15 other countries.
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