Openly gay man still denied leadership role with Boy Scouts afte - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Openly gay man still denied leadership role with Boy Scouts after ban is lifted

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Greg Bourke (Left) has been involved in his son's Boy Scout Troop for about 11 years. Greg Bourke (Left) has been involved in his son's Boy Scout Troop for about 11 years.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- The Boy Scouts of America has lifted its blanket ban on gay adult leaders but a Louisville man's request for membership is still being denied. 

"This is not something that we really sought out or wanted to have happen," Greg Bourke said. "I just wanted to return to some kind of role with my Boy Scout troop." 

He's been involved in his son's Boy Scout Troop for about 11 years. He was a registered leader for six until he was ousted for being openly gay. 

"It was very traumatic and disappointing," Bourke said. 

He says he spent the last three years advocating for change within the organization.

That's in addition to fighting the state for marriage equality. Bourke and his husband were plaintiffs in the case that led to a landmark Supreme Court ruling. 

They won that battle and Bourke thought the recent Boy Scouts policy change was a win too.  He re-applied for a role with the organization last week. 

"My pastor informed me that he had been told by the Archdiocese to tell me that the answer is 'No', I will not be permitted to be a troop leader for our church," said Bourke. 

While Boy Scouts of America lifted it's ban on gay adult leaders, religious organizations that sponsor troops don't have to follow it. 

Part of a statement sent from the Archdiocese of Louisville states, "As a Church deeply committed to proper formation, we have both the right and the responsibility to choose leaders whose character and conduct are consistent with Church teaching." 

"I think our Archdiocese is really alienating itself from its own members by taking extreme stance like this," Bourke said. 

Despite being kicked out of the Boy Scouts and denied re-admission now, Bourke says he still doesn't want to walk away. 

"I hope that the barrier that's there now falls and ultimately I do get to rejoin that unit," he said. 

Bourke says he doesn't think this barrier to join the Boy Scouts will be won with a lawsuit. He says will instead likely come down to the court of public opinion. 

Previous: Boy Scouts of America end total ban on gay adults

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