A new promise for Girlguiding UK

>>  Sunday, June 23, 2013

Sometime ago I discussed why I thought it was time to remove God from our Guiding Promise.

Part of the Guiding aim is that we are committed to helping girls explore their spiritually, beliefs and values as part of our balanced program but we live in an increasingly diverse and often secular society, there has been a huge social change in this country since our start and even since the last change to the promise and 'duty to God' became to  'love my God'.

Well, change is upon us again. After a consultation,where anyone with an interest could take part in a survey, the new promise has finally been announced:

I promise that I will do my best:
To be true to myself and develop my beliefs,
To serve the Queen and my community,
To help other people
To keep the (Brownie) Guide Law.

And we will still have a special version for Rainbows:
I promise that I will do my best to think about my beliefs and to be kind and helpful.

I am still fully committed to the promise I made when I was a Brownie and each promise since because making the promise, especially for the first time, is a very special moment.  Hopefully this new promise will be something our new girls and next generations can relate to and also be fully  committed to.

If they relate to it, they will live it. And what better way to try to improve our world than to have a mass of people that are committed to developing themselves, to serving the community (and by Queen we mean our country too) and to helping other people.

Imagine a world where everyone was committed to helping others.

One of the unchanging features of our Promise has always been our declaration to keep the Guide Law:
A Guide is honest, reliable and can be trusted.
A Guide is helpful and uses her time and abilities wisely.
A Guide faces challenges and learns from her experience.
A Guide is a good friend and a sister to all Guides.
A Guide is polite and considerate.
A Guide respects all living things and takes care of the world
around her. 
Imagine a world where we all lived (or at least tried to) like this.

So God has gone from our Promise but the core fundamentals remain. It gives a purpose to life and emphasises to members the importance of values such as honesty, responsibility, integrity, loyalty, respect, tolerance, self-awareness and having a moral framework.

In the century since the founding of guiding, tens of millions of girls and women around the world have made the Promise, each in her own language.

Tens of millions of girls and women all committed to a moral framework.  It can only be a good thing.

Whilst I am confident that the new promise going forwards is a good thing for our modern and relevant Guiding.  For me, this still speaks volumes, he doesn't need to be in my promise but he features rather largely in my life.


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