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Timeline: A look at the relationship between the LDS Church and Scouting

More than 100 years ago, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints became the first charter organization of the Boy Scouts of America. In that time, the church and BSA have worked together to help young men gain skills, values and spiritual strength through outdoor activities and programs. This timeline highlights some of the significant moments over the years.

Many of the following dates were gathered with the help of

1875 The Young Mens Mutual Improvement Association is organized. In the following decades, a publication called the Improvement Era becomes the YMMIAs written voice.

1910 Almost 10 years after Robert Baden-Powell starts the Scouting movement, William D. Boyce incorporates Boy Scouts of America. Near the end of the year, George T. Wood forms the first Scout unit in Utah.

1911 The LDS Church forms the MIA Scouts.

1913 On May 21, the LDS Church officially joins the Boy Scouts of America as its first charter organization, sparking a widespread movement of Scouting in Utah. John H. Taylor becomes the first LDS Scout Commissioner serving all LDS units in the Western U.S.

1919 Scout councils are formed in Ogden and Salt Lake, with Oscar Kirkham as the first Scout executive of the Salt Lake Council. The Utah County Council is formed two years later.

1928 The LDS Church designates Scouting as the official activity program for its young men ages 12-16.

1938 The LDS Church celebrates 25 years of Scouting by sponsoring an event attended by 5,000 boys.

1941 With 18-year-olds being drafted into World War II, the Explorer age is changed to ages 15-17. By 1949, the Scouting age had dropped to 11 and all boys ages 14 and older became Explorers.

Courtesy of Intellectual Reserve, Inc.

1947 On the 100th anniversary of the Mormon pioneers entering the Salt Lake Valley, 4,000 scouts from around the U.S. and Mexico participate in a Pioneer Centennial Campout.

1951 LDS Church President David O. McKay announces the formation of a Church-Scouts Relationship Committee.

1952 The LDS Church announces the Primary will sponsor Cub Scouting and 11-year-old Scouts will be part of a Guide Patrol under the Primarys direction.

1954 The Duty to God Award is created for boys ages 12-18 and is earned by passing off requirements that correlate with Scouting and priesthood responsibilities.

1959 The Explorer program is replaced by Exploring, with updated materials and activities.

1963 The LDS Church celebrates 50 Golden Years of Scouting in the Church. The same year, the church begins holding leadership conferences for LDS leaders at Philmont Scout Ranch.

1969 LDS Church General Primary President LaVern Parmley becomes the first woman to serve on the National Scout Committee. Seven years later, she becomes the first woman to receive the Silver Buffalo Award.

1970 The Venturing program is created for young men ages 14-15 while young men ages 16-18 are Explorers. The Blazer Patrol also replaces the Guide Patrol for 11-year-olds. Girls are included in BSAs career-emphasis Exploring Program.

1974 The M.I.A. is placed under the direction of the Presiding Bishopric. Three years later, the name will be changed to Young Men and a Young Mens Presidency is created.

1978 LDS leaders in Utah develop the Varsity Program to eventually replace the Churchs Venturing program (1983) and become a BSA program (1984).

1980 The LDS Churchs consolidated meeting schedule allows for more time during mutual for Scouting activities.

1988 The LDS Church celebrated its 75-year partnership with the BSA with a special Baden Powell patch.

1991 The LDS Church begins paying for activities and registration, excluding long-term camps.

1998 The Exploring program is replaced by the BSA Venture Program.

2001 The LDS Church announces a new Duty to God Aaronic Priesthood Program correlating both Scouting and priesthood quorum requirements while the Primary replaces its Faith in God Award with new requirements.

2010 BSA celebrates 100 years of Scouting with various activities and events. The church honors Scouting by creating a special patch and George Albert Smith Award.

2013 The LDS Church celebrates 100 years of its relationship with Scouting with an exhibit at the Church History Museum and a special program in October. The Thomas S. Monson medallion is given to Scouts of all denominations at each Centennial Encampment.