After 68 years of sponsorship, the Roswell Street Baptist Church in Marietta, Ga., is severing ties with a Boy Scout troop after the organization announced it would accept openly gay members, reports WSBTV.
The church’s senior pastor, Ernest Easley, said his congregation gave him a standing ovation after he announced the church would be kicking out Troop 204 and that he fears the Boy Scouts of America’s change in policy puts youth at risk. "We're not going to openly embrace that which stands opposed to God's word," he told WSBTV. "You've got boys in there in a tent that are sexually attractive to other boys, whose hormones are going off the wall. Something is going to happen."
However, Troop 204 has already found a new home thanks to Marietta’s Unity North Atlanta Church, which opened its doors to the group after hearing of its displacement. “It is not turning our backs on people, but opening our hearts and our churches to them," said Unity North Atlanta's Reverend Richard Burdick. “My hope is that this is one small spoke in the wheel of acceptance for all people.”
According to BSA officials, fewer than 5%t of Atlanta-area churches that sponsor troops have chosen to end their relationship with the organization since it announced out gay young people would be allowed to join.
Watch WSBTV’s full report below.