ATLANTA - The Boy Scouts of America votes to drop a long-standing ban and allow openly gay boys to become members.
But it could be very costly.
CNN reports the decision could cost the Boy Scouts $18 million in funding from organizations in the South alone.
Some conservative churches that sponsor Scout units wanted to continue excluding gay youths. They are threatening to defect now that the ban has been lifted.
The decision will cost the Scouts at least one member from metro Atlanta.
“I certainly won’t continue in my role,” says Kipper Tabb. He is with Troop 317 out of Johns Creek and is an associate pastor at Perimeter Church.
“I’m disappointed,” Tabb told WSB. “I had thought that the folks that had been trying to help the delegates make an informed decision, the result would have been different.”
Tabb’s church is also debating if it will continue to sponsor the Scouts.
However, not all religious leaders are jumping ship.
“Certainly when we are in the spirit of inclusion and welcoming everyone equally,” says Rev. Paul Graetz with the First Metropolitan Community Church in northeast Atlanta, “we are doing the same thing. We are welcome the spirit of Christ.”
Graetz is gay and was also in the boy scouts.
“I was in scouts, I absolutely loved it,” he says.
The vote does not lift the ban against gay adults serving in scouts, but Tabb expects that to change eventually.