Important BSA Bankruptcy Update – Receipt of Disclosure Statement Package Expected at Churches Soon

The Central Texas Conference continues to monitor the ongoing Boy Scouts of America (BSA) Bankruptcy as the CTC and the local churches of the conference work through different and forward-looking ways to continue to safely, carefully and effectively be together in ministry with BSA troops and packs. The conference was recently informed by the United Methodist Ad Hoc Committee* that thousands of United Methodist churches across the U.S. will soon receive a Disclosure Statement Package related to the BSA bankruptcy.
The UM Ad Hoc Committee and the Central Texas Conference advises that churches who receive the BSA Bankruptcy Disclosure Statement should not take any action at this time and should contact their District Superintendent with questions regarding the Disclosure Statement. The full statement and more detailed guidance from the Ad Hoc Committee is below.
"Thank you for your continued cooperation and patient support in this matter," stated Bishop Lowry. "Together, with the presence, power and guidance of the Holy Spirit, we will find the best path for our communities and churches to have a vibrant relationship with our local BSA troops and packs as we actively continue our mission of making disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world. Recall the Lord’s words to Joshua '…do not be frightened or dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.'” (Joshua 1:9 NRSV)
The following is announcement from the Ad Hoc Committee.

In the coming days, many United Methodist churches will receive a package in the mail from the Boy Scouts of America bankruptcy case. The mailing is being sent to all chartered organizations that sponsored a troop with Boy Scouts and is called a Disclosure Statement Package. It is intended to summarize for chartered organizations how the BSA’s proposed plan of reorganization will affect the legal rights of chartered organizations with respect to Scouting-related sexual abuse claims potentially connected to chartered organizations. The Package will include the following:

  • A “plain language” summary of the Disclosure Statement drafted specifically for chartered organizations;
  • An “opt out” form relating to options all chartered organizations have as to how sexual abuse claims against each chartered organization will be dealt with. THIS SHOULD NOT BE FILLED OUT BY A LOCAL CHURCH UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCE (more information on this will be provided by the UM Ad Hoc Committee in the next two weeks); and
  • A ballot for casting a vote for or against the plan (only local churches that timely filed a “proof of claim” with the bankruptcy court will receive a ballot, other chartered organizations will only receive the rest of the Package). THIS SHOULD NOT BE FILLED OUT AT THIS TIME (more information on this will be provided by the UM Ad Hoc Committee in the next two weeks).

The Package is being sent by the BSA to all known chartered organizations, so it will be received by local churches that are chartered organizations regardless of whether they filed a proof of claim. ANY LOCAL CHURCH THAT RECEIVES THE PACKAGE SHOULD TAKE NO ACTION AT THIS TIME. Please contact your District Superintendent with questions. The United Methodist Ad Hoc Committee is also developing recommendations for local churches on how to complete the included ballot, which will be shared as soon as they are complete (and well before the voting deadline of December 14, 2021). Local churches will also be provided with a summary of the most important aspects of the plan. Additionally, information sessions for district superintendents, as well as webinars for church leaders about how to complete the form, why the vote matters, and how the outcome may affect our congregations, will be provided.

*The United Methodist Ad Hoc Committee is comprised of representative of the General Committee on Finance & Administration, Conference representatives from across the U.S. and legal counsel special committee members specifically assigned to the BSA Bankruptcy issues, guidance, and decisions for The UMC.