Everything in Girl Scouting is based on the Girl Scout Promise and Law, which include many principles and values that are common across religions. Because we understand that religious instruction is at the center of many families and communities, we invite Girl Scouts to take spiritual journeys via their faith’s religious recognitions. Girl Scouts is welcoming and inclusive to members of all faiths.
The ways in which members identify and fulfill their spiritual beliefs are personal and private, however individual Girl Scouts are encouraged and helped through the Girl Scout program to become better members of their own religious group.
Every Girl Scout group must recognize that religious instruction is the responsibility of parents and religious leaders and respect the varying religious opinions and practices of its membership in planning and coordinating activities.
When a Girl Scout troop is sponsored by one religious group, members of different faiths or religious affiliations within the troop shall not be required to take part in religious observance of the sponsoring group.
My Promise, My Faith
Girls of all grade levels can earn the My Promise, My Faith pin, which complements existing religious recognitions and allows girls to further strengthen the connection between their faith and Girl Scouts. Once each year, a girl can earn the My Promise, My Faith pin by carefully examining the Girl Scout Law and tying it directly to tenets of her faith. To learn more about earning your My Promise, My Faith pin, check out these resources:
Created by national religious organizations to encourage the spiritual growth of youth members, religious recognition programs reinforce many of the values integral to Girl Scouting and help girls grow stronger in and learn more about their chosen faith.
Each religious organization develops and administers its own program. You can find more information, a video explaining religious recognition programs, and other resources for collaborating with faith communities at P.R.A.Y. Publishing.
Some religious organizations are not affiliated with P.R.A.Y. or may not have a national office. To learn about their religious recognitions, contact local leaders.
Girl Scouting is proud of its long-standing relationship with the Catholic Church, dating back more than 100 years. The motivating force in Girl Scouting is spiritual and as a member of Girl Scouts, each girl is encouraged to become a stronger member of her own religious community.
The Archdiocese of Milwaukee acknowledges the long history of mutual support with Girl Scouting. Girl Scout troops have been a consistent presence in many of our parishes and schools, working in close cooperation with pastors, principals and other leaders, for the benefit of young women and the broader community.
In recent years, questions have been raised concerning Catholic participation in Girl Scouting. To address these questions at the national level, staff of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) dialogued extensively with staff of the Girl Scouts of the USA (GSUSA), and in April 2014, the USCCB produced a resource for Catholic leaders and parents.
We acknowledge the value of that conversation at the national level and we take this occasion to issue a companion statement regarding Girl Scouts and the Catholic Church in our local setting.
The Archdiocese of Milwaukee:
The Girl Scouts of Wisconsin Southeast, Girl Scouts of Manitou, and Girl Scouts of Wisconsin Badgerland:
Together, the Archdiocese and these Councils are committed to maintaining open communication regarding concerns or questions that may arise, and they will assist troops, leaders, and parents in providing a fruitful experience for their Girl Scouts.
Learn more about Girl Scouting & Your Faith and get additional resources from Girl Scouts of the USA.