As of today (Dec. 1), the formal relationship between The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod and the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) is “no longer tenable,” according to LCMS President Rev. Dr. Matthew C. Harrison and Office of National Mission Executive Director Rev. Bart Day. The decision came as a result of the BSA’s action, made earlier this year, to allow openly gay Scout leaders.
In a statement released today, Harrison and Day outlined months of conversation and correspondence with leadership from the BSA prior to the Synod’s dissolution of the Memorandum of Understanding with the BSA, noting that “while we understand the legal concerns that led to this new BSA direction, it is simply a place the church is not willing to go.”
Legal concerns were also a determining factor. “Recent federal rulings, including the Supreme Court ruling in Obergefell v. Hodges, are shaping decisions by organizations such as the BSA,” the statement explained. “Congregations who continue their BSA charters after the Dec. 1, 2015, dissolution of the LCMS MOU should seek local legal counsel and guidance on how best to safeguard themselves legally.”
Harrison and Day also noted that they “lament the fact that an MOU between the LCMS and the BSA is no longer possible” and “pray that the Lord of the church will bless congregations and individuals as they consider the information shared here and chart a faithful course forward.”
To read the statement or a shortened version of it, click here.
Posted Dec. 1, 2015