- 08 Feb 2020 : Vanguard Scouting Program Launch Date - A new organization of LDS Scouters launches group to continue working with Scouting organizations around the world to build bridges of faith. This date coincides with the 110th Anniversary of the charter of the Boy Scouts of America.
Program overview Edit
Officially called Vanguard International Scouting Association, On January 1, 2020, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (the Church) discontinued its role as a chartered organization with all Scouting programs around the world including the Boy Scouts of America. The Church has for over 100 years been a great supporter of Scouting in many countries and many have benefited greatly because of this. President George Albert Smith once said, “I feel grateful to the Lord that Sir Robert Baden-Powell was impressed—may I say, inspired—to give Scouting to the world” (Improvement Era, Sept. 1948, 558).
Recognizing that the Church has concluded its formal relationships with Scouting, many have felt a strong prompting to organize an International Scouting Association for members and friends of the Church. This association will provide a way to connect with those who recognize what Scouting has done and will continue to do around the world.
Realizing that many Latter-day Saints desire to continue their Scouting experience, the Church has encouraged them to join community Scouting units. Therefore, as with other denominations participating in Scouting, Latter-day Saints continuing their Scouting involvement desire an independent organization to support their efforts in Scouting, domestically and internationally. Hence the creation of Vanguard International Scouting Association.
History of vanguard Edit
Why the name Vanguard? Vanguard is defined as an adventurer in a new territory or an unconquered place. We are truly embarking on an adventure as Latter-day Saint Scouters begin a new era of Scouting. The Vanguard name has historical significance within the Church. In the early years of Scouting in the Church, Church leaders emphasized affiliation with national Scouting organizations all over the world. The Vanguard program was initiated for Church units outside of the United States where no national Scouting program was available. Membership was open to all youth ages twelve to fourteen, including those who were not Church members. Curriculum included activities, advancement, achievement, and spiritual growth.
The purposes of Vanguard International Scouting Association are to:
- Represent Scouting by members and friends of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to the Boy Scouts of America (BSA), other National Scouting Organizations (NSOs) and to the World Organization of the Scout Movement (WOSM).
- Encourage membership in and affiliation with Scouting organizations by members and friends of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints worldwide.
- Develop a Religious Emblems Award to help Latter-day Saint Scouts and Scouting leaders learn and apply their Duty to God.
- Perform those other functions that will encourage active involvement in the Scouting programs of the BSA, and other NSOs worldwide by members and friends of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
Program activities Edit
In order to fulfil the purposes set for the above, Vanguard International Scouting Association will be involved in the following activities:
- Serve as a liaison between Scouts and Scouters who are members and friends of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and BSA, other NSOs and WOSM.
- Represent Latter-day Saint Scouters on the BSA National Relationship Committee and other BSA committees and encourage active participation on BSA committees at all levels: National, Regional, Area, Council and District.
- Provide and coordinate, in connection with local Church leaders, Latter-day Saint chaplain services at Philmont Scout Ranch, National and World Jamborees and other Scouting encampments.
- Represent Latter-day Saint Scouts, Scouters and Scouting families at BSA National Jamborees, World Scout Jamborees and other Scouting events by providing Latter-day Saint Scouting exhibits, sponsoring Latter-day Saint Scouting events, etc.
- Provide a forum for connecting Latter-day Saint Scouters across the world to help them be more effective in using Scouting to further the youth objectives of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
- Provide communications to Latter-day Saints involved in Scouting and others domestically and across the world concerning the benefits of Scouting in helping their youth reach their potential, develop life skills and develop character traits, and prepare them…for Life.
- Continue to build bridges of “friendship, fellowship and faith” with our Scouting friends from all different backgrounds and denominations across the world.
- Develop and promote a Religious Emblems Award to help Latter-day Saint Scouts, Scouting leaders and families learn and apply their Duty to God. Provide written materials to describe the requirements for Scouts and leaders to earn the award and provide helps and materials to assist them in earning the award.
- Sponsor annual Conferences for Latter-day Saint Scouters at Philmont Scout Ranch.
- Develop materials to support the efforts of Latter-day Saint Scouters worldwide.
- Work with the BSA for needed major maintenance of the Latter-day Saint chapel at Philmont Scout Ranch.
- Work with BSA to develop marketing and recruitment materials to help grow Scouting, both domestically and internationally, among those of the Latter-day Saint faith.
- Encourage occasional Scouting encampments for Latter-day Saint Scouts, normally on a Scouting regional or area basis.
- Perform those other functions that will encourage active involvement in the Scouting programs of the BSA, other NSOs worldwide by members and friends of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
- Provide ideas to show how the work in various national Scouting programs can be used in the new Church Children and Youth Development program. The intent is to give a guide to the complimentary nature of the two programs and to show that youth efforts in one can also serve the youth in the other.
Vision statement Edit
The vision of Vanguard International Scouting Association is to provide effective representation of Latter-day Saint Scouts and Scouters and their values worldwide and actively encourage Latter-day Saints to become involved in Scouting.
Mission statement Edit
The mission of Vanguard International Scouting Association is to represent Latter-day Saint Scouts and Scouters worldwide, through effective association with WOSM, BSA and other National Scouting Organizations; to ensure that Scouting continues to be consistent with Latter-day Saint beliefs and values and continues to meet the needs of Latter-day Saints in preparing their youth for full time missionary service, and a lifetime of service to their families, Church, professions and communities; and to prepare them for Life.
LDS values statement Edit
The values of Vanguard International Scouting Association are to strive to live, model and teach the Scout Oath and Law in all our efforts, associations and dealings with families, Scouts, Scouters, WOSM, BSA, NSOs, Vanguard donors and the community on behalf of Latter-day Saint Scouts and Scouters.