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Religious Principle

The Boy Scouts of America maintains that no Scout can grow into the best kind of citizen without recognizing an obligation to God. In the first part of the Scout Oath (Promise) the Scout declares, "On my honor I will do my best to do my duty to God and my country and to obey the Scout Law."

The recognition of God as the ruling and leading power in the universe, and the grateful acknowledgment of His favors and blessings, are necessary to the best type of citizenship and are wholesome precepts in the education of the growing Scouts. No matter what the religious faith of the members may be, this fundamental need of good citizenship should be kept before them.

The Boy Scouts of America, therefore,recognizes the religious element in the training of the Scout, but it is absolutely nonsectarian in its attitude toward that religious training. BSA policy is that the home and the organization or group with which the member is connected shall give definite attention to religious life.

Only persons willing to subscribe to this Declaration of Religious Prinicple, and to the Bylaws of the Boy Scouts of America, shall be entitled to certificates of membership.

Article IX. Policies and Definitions - From the Boy Scouts of America Charter and Bylaws

Section 1. Declaration of Religious Principle, clause 1.The Boy Scouts of America maintains that no member can grow into the best kind of citizen without recognizing an obligation to God. In the first part of the Scout Oath or Promise the member declares, "On my honor I will do my best to do my duty to God and my country and to obey the Scout Law." The recognition of God as the ruling and leading power in the universe and the grateful acknowledgment of His favors and blessings are necessary to the best type of citizenship and are wholesome precepts in the education of the growing members. No matter what the religious faith of the members may be, this fundamental need of good citizenship should be kept before them. The Boy Scouts of America, therefore,recognizes the religious element in the training of the member, but it is absolutely nonsectarian in its attitude toward that religious training. Its policy is that the home and the organization or group with which the member is connected shall give definite attention to religious life.

Section 1. Activities, clause 2. 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."

Section 1. Freedom, clause 3. In no case where a unit is connected with a church or other distinctively religious organization shall members of other denominations or faith be required, because of their membership in the unit, to take part in or observe a religious ceremony distinctly unique to that organization or church.

Section 1. Leaders, clause 4. Only persons willing to subscribe to these declarations of principles shall been titled to certificates of leadership in carrying out the Scouting program.

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