Church Tells Scout Troop to Find New Meeting Place
A Boy Scout troop that holds its meeting at a Catholic church in northwestern Wisconsin has been told to start looking for a new place to gather.
Boy Scout Troop 90 has been meeting at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Altoona for more than 20 years, according to scoutmaster Bob Thill. The troop has been told it should find a new home after its current charter agreement with the church expires Dec. 31 because of the Boy Scouts’ new policy to allow openly gay boys to join the program beginning next year, Thilll said.
Rev. Derek Sakowski, of St. Mary’s, said he was uncomfortable with the wording in the revised Boy Scouts membership policy that says no youth may be turned away "on the basis of sexual orientation or preference alone."
Sakowski said "sexual preference" is too ambiguous, and he has sought clarification from the national headquarters.
"We want to know if it fits with our Catholic values. If I don’t get a (satisfactory) response, then I can’t renew the charter," he said, adding that same-sex attraction alone is not considered sinful by the Catholic church.