By Sarah Mac Donald - 11 October, 2013
In a statement on Thursday, the Church of Ireland said that at its most recent meeting, the Standing Committee of the General Synod of the Church of Ireland had resolved to convey their concern to the two organisations.
“We are deeply concerned that, as of 1st September 2013, all new members and leaders will be expected to make a new promise”, the General Synod states.
New members will now promise “To be true to myself and develop my beliefs.” It replaces the previous promise in which Girlguides pledged to “love my God”.
“We regard the words in the promise “To be true to myself” as falling far short of Christian values and therefore cannot support this promise being used,” the Church of Ireland committee warn.
They request Girlguiding Ulster and Girlguiding UK to provide as soon as possible its children and leaders from a Christian background with the option to make a promise to serve God.
In addition, they request that no Church of Ireland based Guiding unit compel its new members to make this new promise containing the wording “to be true to myself”.
The Church also conveys to Girlguiding Ulster and Girlguiding UK the high value it places on their work with children and reminds them of the partnership between the Church and Guiding through the provision of premises, leadership and other support.