Poll: Majority of Mormons Want Church to Cut Ties With Boy Scouts

(Photo: REUTERS/Jonathan Alcorn/Files)Boy Scouts of America troop members attend a Memorial Day weekend commemorative event in Los Angeles, California, in this May 25, 2013, file photo.

A new poll reveals that a majority of members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints want the denomination to end its relationship with the Boy Scouts of America.

A poll conducted by Dan Jones & Associates, on behalf of utahpolicy.com, shows that 63 percent of self-described "very active" Mormons want the Mormon Church to cut ties with the BSA following the renowned youth organization's recent decision to allow openly gay individuals to become Scout leaders.

The poll also found overall that 54 percent of Utahans support a severing of ties, as well as a smaller majority of "somewhat active" Mormons support disassociation.

"A Mormon exodus could devastate the Scouts, given that, as recently as 2013, more than a third (37 percent) of the troops were LDS-sponsored, accounting for 18 percent of the BSA's 2.4 million total membership," reported the Salt Lake Tribune.

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(Photo: Reuters/Jim Urquhart)The LDS Church's Mormon Temple in downtown Salt Lake City, Utah, is seen Jan. 27, 2012.

"The Mormon mark is even larger on Utah troops. The state's three Scout councils report that between 96 percent and 99 percent of their ranks are in LDS units."

The Christian Post reached out to the LDS Church, but a spokesperson responded that they had no comment regarding the poll.

In July, the BSA executive committee voted to end its historic ban on openly gay adult leaders, a decision ratified soon after by the National Executive Board in a 45-12 vote.

While ending the gay scout leader ban, BSA also stated that church-sponsored troops can still set their own policies on adult leaders.

The Boy Scouts leadership said in a memo that it "rejects any interference with or condemnation of the diverse beliefs of chartering organizations on matters of marriage, family, and sexuality."

Nevertheless, denominations like the LDS Church have openly considered reassessing and possibly ending their connection to the BSA.

In a statement released soon after the BSA vote, the LDS Church said they were "deeply troubled" by the BSA's decision, adding that "the admission of openly gay leaders is inconsistent with the doctrines of the Church."

"As a global organization with members in 170 countries, the LDS Church has long been evaluating the limitations that fully one-half of its youth face where Scouting is not available," continued the statement.

"Those worldwide needs combined with this vote by the BSA National Executive Board will be carefully reviewed by the leaders of the [Mormon] Church in the weeks ahead."

A spokesperson for the Boy Scouts of America provided CP with a statement regarding its relationship with the LDS Church.

"The Boy Scouts of America deeply appreciates our long-standing relationship with The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints," read the statement.

"America's youth are better off when they are in Scouting, and the BSA is successful because of its relationships with valued chartered organizations like the LDS Church."

The utahpolicy.com poll was performed between Aug. 7-14, with a sample space of 500 Mormons and former Mormons living in Utah.