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Wiccans Offer Alternative to Boy Scouts
CNSNews.com ^ | October 31, 2002 | Michael L. Betsch

Posted on 10/31/2002 9:05:17 AM PST by H8DEMS

(CNSNews.com) - Frustrated by an unsuccessful campaign to achieve religious recognition from the Boy Scouts of America, a Seattle-based Wicca church has launched its own youth program, which is based on tolerance for different beliefs, including differences in sexual orientation.

SpiralScouts founder Pete 'Pathfinder' Davis believes that many of the things the Boy Scouts are doing are "socially inappropriate." He said he created to the SpiralScouts to "fill the void left by prejudicial treatment of other established children's programs."

Davis, who serves as the Archpriest of the Wiccan Aquarian Tabernacle Church, said his main argument with the BSA is that the group has refused to recognize Wicca as an acceptable form of worship, but at the same time, the BSA incorporates the symbols of myriad Christian denominations into its Religious Emblems program.

He said the Scouts rejected a Wicca badge that was designed and submitted by a well-known Wiccan priestess.

In 1999, Davis created the SpiralScouts as the Aquarian Tabernacle Church's "answer" to the Boy Scouts and other youth organizations that subscribe only to "traditional" faiths. Today, the SpiralScouts welcomes children of all ages (four and up) and backgrounds, including Wiccans, pagans, atheists and homosexuals.

Davis said practicing Wicca is not a mandatory activity for the 50 SpiralScout units currently operating across the U.S., Canada and Switzerland. Beyond fostering a respect for nature, it is up to each SpiralScout unit leader to decide whether they will teach children the principles and philosophy of the Wiccan religion.

The vast majority of the SpiralScout units are operated by Wiccan groups and churches, he said.

"When we started to formalize the program, we designed it in a fashion that it's oriented towards earth religion, but so is Scouting, whether they realize it or not," Davis said. Unlike the "pervasive" use of Christianity contained within the BSA, the SpiralScouts was created to accommodate the spiritual beliefs of any minority religious group, he said.

SpiralScouts describes itself as a work in progress. It says it offers children the opportunity to develop interpersonal and life skills and a pagan world view, in addition to learning "the usual handicrafts of scouting and woodland lore."

Boy Scouts dismiss rejection

According to BSA spokesman Gregg Shields, religious emblems are the property of approved religious scouting organizations and are awarded at their own discretion. For example, he said the National Catholic Council on Scouting and the National Jewish Committee on Scouting each have their own unique religious emblem.

"There is no national Wiccan organization," Shields said. "So, that's why there is no religious award for Wiccans."

He encouraged any Wiccan group that would like to charter a troop in their community to submit an application to their local BSA council for consideration.

Focus on tolerance

According to the SpiralScouts membership requirements, it is imperative that parents and leaders promote religious and cultural tolerance so their children may learn to co-exist with society as a whole. Specifically, the group encourages children to accept the "differing roles of male and female throughout nature and culture."

Contrary to the Boy Scout policy of excluding homosexuals - a policy upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court - the SpiralScouts welcomes homosexuals within its ranks. Davis explained that the Wiccan religion accommodates homosexuals because its philosophy is focused on the "balance of polarities" of that exist in nature.

For example, Davis said the SpiralScouts mandates that leaders of individual units should include both a male and a female. However, he said the rules are flexible because some adults, such as homosexuals, "believe themselves to be embodying masculine or feminine characteristics."

Davis believes that such a male/female balance of leadership ensures a SpiralScout's positive integration into the real world. "Children are not born with prejudices," he noted. "They have to learn prejudice and intolerance from others."

Defiance of 'extreme right'

According to the group's handbook, "SpiralScouts is something new, something perhaps of historic proportions for modern Paganism. It certainly will have an unmistakable impact on Pagan children growing up in this era of Christian extreme-right domination of our culture."

According to the SpiralScouts' interpretation of the pagan philosophy, children participating in the program will learn to honor "both the maleness and femaleness we all harbor within us," as the handbook put it. "Perhaps, if we are lucky, even a few parents who may need some brushing up on these same skills may reap benefits just from being there with the children while the kids learn these things."


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Front Page News; Miscellaneous; News/Current Events; US: Washington
KEYWORDS: atheists; boyscouts; bsa; bsalist; devil; homosexuals; satan; scouts; wiccans
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1 posted on 10/31/2002 9:05:17 AM PST by H8DEMS
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To: H8DEMS
Every liberal is a pedophile.
2 posted on 10/31/2002 9:08:24 AM PST by moyden
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To: H8DEMS
SHEESH....I might PUKE my breakfast....
3 posted on 10/31/2002 9:09:07 AM PST by goodnesswins
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To: goodnesswins
Wiccans, Muslims, Communists, all fall under the heading from which they came, "Satansists United"!

AKA ant-Christ. God Bless America cause we need it.
Ops4
4 posted on 10/31/2002 9:13:13 AM PST by OPS4
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Comment #5 Removed by Moderator

To: H8DEMS
what kind of badges will they work on?

Communist Manifesto badge?
NAMBLA badge?
Heather has Two Mommies badge?
6 posted on 10/31/2002 9:17:00 AM PST by Beth
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To: H8DEMS; xsmommy; Gabz; Slip18; TxBec
Spiral Scouts?

Why did decide to use THAT term?

(Maybe because they know that the kids who join are going to get screwed up somehow?)
7 posted on 10/31/2002 9:17:08 AM PST by Robert A. Cook, PE
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To: H8DEMS
Most male wiccans are gay.
8 posted on 10/31/2002 9:19:46 AM PST by biblewonk
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To: H8DEMS
Wiccans Offer Alternative to Boy Scouts

Yes, but the name Witchy Lads just never caught on.
9 posted on 10/31/2002 9:21:33 AM PST by aruanan
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To: moyden
I have had to fight in court to maintain child support for my daughter from a parent whose lawyer is a witch, apparently the first known Wiccan to be admitted to argue before the Supreme Court. I found an article she wrote in which she really railed against Christianity's influence in schools. ??? You should have seen her in court several years ago when we presented a budget to the judge that included private school tuition--to a Christian School. She was on her feet in a flash and said they had not agreed to that and, she practically spat it out, particularly that one. If I had held any illusions about their hatred of Christianity and their agenda of erasing any effect of it from society, I would have seen the light. But I knew...
10 posted on 10/31/2002 9:22:42 AM PST by twigs
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To: Robert A. Cook, PE
Yeah, a name that evokes the image of "going down the drain..." seems fitting, huh?

11 posted on 10/31/2002 9:22:58 AM PST by LeftIsSinister
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To: H8DEMS
Do you think their meetings will be held in a gingerbread house?
12 posted on 10/31/2002 9:33:24 AM PST by Alex Murphy
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To: moyden
I agree. These wiccan/fag lovers are examples of some of the sickest deviants in our society.
13 posted on 10/31/2002 9:33:32 AM PST by ohioman
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To: H8DEMS
Good grief, what next! This country has gone completely screwy. WAKE UP AMERICA. We are in danger of losing our soul.
14 posted on 10/31/2002 9:35:57 AM PST by Marysecretary
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To: H8DEMS
Welcome to
A Delaware Valley chapter of SpiralScouts (TM) International
Greetings!

This is the homepage of
SpiralQuest, a new Circle unit of SpiralScouts (TM), located in Hatboro, PA.

We are a Pagan alternative to existing youth scouting programs, welcoming boys and girls of all ages, backgrounds and faith traditions. We are commited to raising children in a tradition of tolerance, acceptance and balanced gender energies.

SpiralQuest
offers a fun opportunity for Pagan kids and their families to interact! Our programs include badgework, nature and ecological study, exploration of basic commonalities of Pagan faith beliefs, arts and crafts projects, classical mythology study, and the favorite of all scouting activities - camping.
Please explore our site...

Read all
About Us to discover more about SpiralScouts (TM) International, Inc - how it got started and its philosophies.

Go to a special
Message about meetings and other important information from our Circle Leaders, Trish and Walter Bachteler.

Check out our
Calendar for upcoming events.

Most importantly,
Contact Us for membership information. We hope you can join us!

15 posted on 10/31/2002 9:37:24 AM PST by VRWC_minion
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To: H8DEMS
Today, the SpiralScouts welcomes children of all ages (four and up) and backgrounds, including Wiccans, pagans, atheists and homosexuals.

This group is just screaming for every weirdo to come out of the closet to join as leaders. The combinations are endless :

a lesby dike with a crossdresser

a female wicca with a gay guy

I wonder how long this is going to last before they end up in a lawsuit for a molesting or some other scandel. Do we want to start putting in our bets as to how soon it will happen. I give them 2 years before some parents files a lawsuit. All monies raised will go to BSA. Or better yet to pay for the therapy that these poor kids are going to need.

16 posted on 10/31/2002 9:39:51 AM PST by notpoliticallycorewrecked
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To: H8DEMS
There is also a Christian version of the scouts called the Royal Rangers.
17 posted on 10/31/2002 9:41:51 AM PST by Britton J Wingfield
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To: H8DEMS

18 posted on 10/31/2002 9:42:16 AM PST by Consort
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To: Robert A. Cook, PE
Spiral Scouts? Why did decide to use THAT term?" Because as soon as one joins it's a "DOWNWARDS SPIRAL!!"
19 posted on 10/31/2002 9:45:26 AM PST by Fighter@heart
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To: Britton J Wingfield
And let us not forget the AWANA program!
20 posted on 10/31/2002 9:45:41 AM PST by Alex Murphy
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