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Last year, the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) voted to block LGBT adults from holding leadership positions in the organization. In March 2014, BSA acted on their promise and revoked the Scoutmaster position of Geoffrey McGrath, after he told the organization that he was openly gay. McGrath had founded two Scouting Groups sponsored by the Ranier Beach United Methodist Church in Washington State.
As Scouts for Equality reports: "Since then, support for McGrath has been overwhelmingly positive. The entire Seattle City Council, as well as more than 20 Washington State legislators, have expressed their support for Rainier Beach United Methodist Church’s right to determine its own leadership for McGrath’s ability to remain a Scoutmaster. Most important, RBUMC Rev. Dr. Monica Corsaro has stood by McGrath and has refused to remove him from his post. BSA is taking this action in direct contradiction to the inclusive religious beliefs and wishes of Rainer Beach Methodist Church." The equality organization also notes that the scouting groups operate in areas that lacks good opportunities for young people.
BSA responded to the scouting units' show of support by revoking the charters for both groups, Seattle Troop 98 and Pack 98. Ranier Beach UMC belongs to a network of Methodist churches that openly welcome LBGTQ members. They say BSA is disrespecting their religious beliefs, which is against the twelfth point of Scout Law.
Sign this petition to show your support for Ranier Beach United Methodist Church and its scouting units!
We sign this petition to express our extreme disappointment at the Boy Scouts of America for taking discriminatory action against not only Scoutmaster Geoffrey McGrath, but against the two scouting units associated with the Ranier Beach United Methodist Church. This decision hurts the children involved in scouting and the community at large. The particular religious beliefs of RBUMC welcome LGBTQ individuals and the BSA's decision violates those beliefs. We ask you to recognize the rights of this community to adhere to their convictions and reinstate both scouting units as well as Geoffrey McGrath.