In 1945, Roswell Street Baptist Church chartered Boy Scout Troop 204. They have worked as partners in youth ministry since that time. Active in community outreach, the troop has been seen as a way to connect members of the church and their community.
A recent Baptist Press article summarizing the threat to this relationship can be found at this link — http://www.bpnews.net/BPnews.asp?ID=40254
The article also lists some of the unfortunate consequences of breaking up this helpful relationship:
…a split with Roswell Street Baptist would be difficult considering the influence the church has had on families with boys involved in Scouting, particularly those who may not be open to traditional church activities. Harmon also noted that Scouts and their families hear presentations of the Gospel at chapel services during camping trips and at Scout Sunday services at the church.
Donna Vinson, the troop committee chair, has seen the impact Scouting can make in both the boys and the leaders. Seeing the lives of Christian Scouts and hearing them share about their faith “is something that leads other boys to want to know more about Christ,” she said.
For Vinson and others, the local troop is a family that shares their lives with each other. She noted the pride they all felt at former Scouts serving in the military and the sadness they endured after hearing of one of their own being killed in Afghanistan.
“We share concerns and the good times,” Vinson said. “We laugh together. We pray together. We are a family.”
While Troop 204 has had free access to Roswell Street’s facilities, Easley noted that any changes could sever the relationship.
“I seriously doubt that our membership would want us to begin renting space to any outside group that was pro-gay, pro-choice or took any moral position that contradicted the Word of God,” Easley said.
“In my estimation, if the requirements are altered,” Easley said, “not only will faith-based organizations be forced to sever their historical partnerships with the BSA but the landscape of the BSA will be forever altered.”
“Perhaps,” the pastor suggested, “it is time for the BSA to change their leadership.”