Mac’s Message #61: We Need Scouting Today!

Mac McIntire

Mac McIntire

Even though leaders of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints have decided to continue the partnership with the Boy Scouts of America, and even though the majority of members polled have determined to follow the prophet on this choice, I still hear a lot of discussion among Young Men leaders and parents regarding whether this is the right decision. Some are questioning whether to continue their support through Friends of Scouting. Even the commitment of some leaders to serve in Scouting has been weakened or extinguished.

In 1991 President Thomas S. Monson said: “If ever there were a time when the principles of Scouting were vitally needed—that time is now” (Thomas S. Monson, “Called to Serve,” Ensign, Nov. 1991, 47). The conditions of society that prompted the prophet to make that statement have degenerated significantly since then, intensifying the need for the principles of Scouting even more today. The philosophies and values contained in the Scout Oath and Scout Law continue to be a standard that one would hope every young man in America would embrace and live to the best of his ability. Rather than limiting the reach of Scouting, we ought to be expanding it to every boy and young man in the Lord’s vineyard.

Every youth within our stewardship—member and non-member alike—can become a better young man by exemplifying what the Boy Scouts of America espouses, particularly when combined with the teachings of the gospel of Jesus Christ. We have a sacred duty to expose the Lord’s precious young men to all that is good. “If there is anything virtuous, lovely, or of good report or praiseworthy, we seek after these things” (the thirteenth article of faith, italic emphasis added). Satan seeks to destroy that which is good by driving wedges that divide and demoralize those who support such imperative values as being trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean, and reverent.

Marion G. Romney declared: “The only safety we have in the world for our children is what they build within themselves. We can make restrictions against drinking and smoking, and we can make regulations to guide the affairs of people. We can throw all the protections possible around them. But, after all, the thing that holds them in the final test is what is inside of them. They must be able to stand alone” (F. Burton Howard, Marion G. Romney: His Life and Faith, 153). For decades young men have been learning to stand alone because of lessons learned and values internalized from Scouting experiences garnered on hiking trails and mountain tops.

Over the next several weeks of blog messages I wish to highlight the principles of Scouting contained in the Scout Oath. They are the principles President Monson said are so vitally needed. We need to do all we can to help our young men to become men of honor and duty—young men who do their best to do their duty to God, their country, and their fellow man.

In the middle of his tumultuous trials, Job was counseled: “I would seek unto God, and unto God would I commit my cause” (Job 5:8). Let us seek unto God and recommit our cause to support Scouting. The principles of Scouting are too valuable to discard at a time when they are needed most. We have a sacred duty to stand for truth and righteousness and support all that is good in a world that grows darker and more disoriented each day. The standards of the Scout Oath and Scout Law are principles by which a young man should govern his life. It is our job, as Young Men and Scouting leaders, to uphold and promote those standards. Let us faithfully follow the prophet as we press on in the work of the Lord.


Take a Moment to Reflect

  • How firm is your resolve to support Scouting in the Church?
  • Are you pressing forward by carrying out your Scouting program the way it has been designed by the Boy Scouts of America and adapted by the Church?
  • Are you inculcating in your young men the principles and values of the Scout Oath and Scout Law?


Turn Your Reflection Into Action

  • What will you start doing, stop doing, or do better as a result of your reflection?


Therefore it is given to abide in you; the record of heaven; the Comforter; the peaceable things of immortal glory; the truth of all things; that which quickeneth all things, which maketh alive all things; that which knoweth all things, and hath all power according to wisdom, mercy, truth, justice, and judgment” (Moses 6:61).


-Mac McIntire is a dedicated Scouter who has blessed many lives through his service and acute understanding of the Scouting program. He currently lives in Las Vegas, Nevada. The views and opinions expressed in this message are solely those of the author.

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  1. Rod Mosher says:

    Thanks you again for standing for the right! We need scouting now more than ever. Keep up the good work. You have made a real difference in the lives of many. Just know that you are appreciated.

    1. Mac McIntire says:

      Thank you so much Rod!

  2. Michael Thomas Goodrich says:

    I just stumbled upon your blog and strongly agree with your statement on Scouting. Scouting was a big influence in my life and I have seen the positives it has done for many of the young men I have served as a Scout Leader. Thank you!

    1. Mac McIntire says:

      Welcome aboard Michael. I hope you will go back and read some of my other blog messages. To make it easy for you, and others who may recently have started reading these messages, here is a list of the messages I’ve written so far. You can find them in the Archives in the upper left corner of this blog.

      • Message X: Introduction
      • Message 1: Gaining a Vision of Scouting and the Aaronic Priesthood
      • Message 2: The Mission of the Boy Scouts of America and the Aaronic Priesthood
      • Message 3: The Aims and Methods of Scouting and the Aaronic Priesthood
      • Message 4: Magnifying Your Calling as an Aaronic Priesthood Leader
      • Message 5: Overcoming the Traditions of the Past
      • Message 6: View Your Calling as a Long-Term Commitment
      • Message 7: Become a Fully-Trained Scout Leader
      • Message 8: Understand How the Scouting Programs Build Upon Each Other
      • Message 9: Purpose of Scouting and Aaronic Priesthood: Bring Young Men to Christ
      • Message 10: Scouting and Aaronic Priesthood Should Be Spiritual Training Camp
      • Message 11: Help Your Young Men Feel and Recognize the Spirit
      • Message 12: Examples of Strong Men of Character
      • Message 13: Who Holds the Keys in the Aaronic Priesthood
      • Message 14: Shadow Leadership
      • Message 15: The Making of a Boy Leader
      • Message 16: Hold Separate Activities for Scouts, Varsity and Venturing
      • Message 17: Invite Every Scouting-age Boy to Join Your Scouting Unit
      • Message 18: The Patrol Method, A Leadership Laboratory
      • Message 19: The Structure of the BSA Program Will Save You
      • Message 20: Recite the Scout Oath and Law Weekly
      • Message 21: The Importance of Being Prepared
      • Message 22: The Importance of Outdoor Activities
      • Message 23: Never Cancel an Activity
      • Message 24: Teach Your Boys to Do Hard Things
      • Message 25: Teach Your Boys to Serve
      • Message 26: The Importance of Safety
      • Message 27: Gaining a Vision of Scouting and the Aaronic Priesthood (Reposted)
      • Message 28: The Power of Reflection
      • Message 29: Wear the Scout Uniform
      • Message 30: Proper Emphasis on Acquiring Rank Advancement and Merit Badges
      • Message 31: Why Boys Acquire Merit Badges
      • Message 32: The Importance of Courts of Honor
      • Message 33: Fulfilling One’s Duty to God
      • Message 34: Duty to God Helps Young Men Feel the Spirit
      • Message 35: Teach Young Men How to Pray, Read Scriptures
      • Message 36: Strengthen Testimonies of Young Men
      • Message 37: The Support Roles in Scouting and the Aaronic Priesthood
      • Message 38: The Role of the Scouting Committee
      • Message 39: Role of Bishopric/Charter Organization Representative in Scouting
      • Message 40: Role of Stake Young Men Presidency/Unit Commissioners in Scouting
      • Message 41: Role of Stake Presidency/High Council Representative
      • Message 42: How to Encourage Leaders to Fully Embrace Scouting
      • Message 43: Role of the LDS-BSA Relationships Committee
      • Message 44: Role of the Council and District
      • Message 45: The Role of Parents and Families in Scouting
      • Message 46: Involving Ward Members in Scouting
      • Message 47: The Highest Level of Support in Scouting
      • Message 48: Funding Your Scouting Activities
      • Message 49: Dealing With Unruly Boys (Part 1)
      • Message 50: Dealing With Unruly Boys (Part 2)
      • Message 51: Dealing With Unruly Boys (Part 3)
      • Message 52: How Perfect Is Your Scouting Program?
      • Message 53: How Scouting Prepares a Young Man to Serve and Honorable Full-time Mission
      • Message 54: How Acquiring Merit Badges Helps Prepare Young Men for Missionary Service
      • Message 55: How the Scout Law Applies to Missionary Service
      • Message 56: How Scouting and AP Leadership Roles Prepare a Young Man for Missionary Service
      • Message 57: How Boy-Led Scouting Prepares Young Men for Missionary Service
      • Message 58: The Impact of One Leader
      • Message 59: Boys Need Strong Men of God to Guide Them
      • Message 60: Why Do You Serve As an Aaronic Priesthood or Scouting Leader?
      • Message 61: Why We Need Scouting Today

  3. Jack L Beckman says:

    Great comments. Very Timely!

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