SALT LAKE CITY, Utah, May 11, 2017 (Gephardt Daily) — The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints announced on Thursday that it will no longer participate in the Varsity and Venture programs of the Boy Scouts of America as of 2018.
Those programs, aimed at boys age 14 through 18, will be replaced by the LDS Church with a new internal program to focus on spirituality and leadership, according a statement from church officials.
The change will affect approximately 180,000 boys, according to figures from the LDS Church.
“We express sincere appreciation and gratitude to all adult leaders who have supported young men in these programs and are grateful for our long-standing and continuing partnership with the Boy Scouts of America and Scouts Canada,” the LDS Church’s First Presidency stated in a letter.
Boys working toward the rank of Eagle Scout will be able to continue after they turn 14 and will be supported and encouraged in their efforts, the letter said.
The Boy Scout programs for boys age 8 to 13 will continue to be used by the LDS Church.
See the church statement below.