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A Safe Place for Girls to Grow up As Women

Focus on the Family / Jim Daly
The Truth Network Radio
July 25, 2022 6:00 am

A Safe Place for Girls to Grow up As Women

Focus on the Family / Jim Daly

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July 25, 2022 6:00 am

Patti Garibay describes how American Heritage Girls (AHG) was founded in response to the Girl Scout's decision to step away from their moral and spiritual foundation. She discusses the issues many young girls face with gender confusion today and cultural backlash about teaching young girls about God.

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The girls I bonded with going through the toughest years of adolescence still provide me with unfailing support and friendship. These friendships were forged overlearning to scale rock faces tight both knots and understand the history of our flag.

My daughter has blossomed into a kind.

And God loving young lady this program she's made and kept so many wonderful friends who share her faith.

One of the first miracles I experienced in American Heritage girls was finding leaders who are willing to mentor me throughout my entire time there is an amazing women help me grow my confidence in ways that I never thought possible by challenging me not to think of the things that I couldn't do as well as others, but instead focus on the things that I can better those comments reflect the heartfelt gratitude that thousands of families have for American Heritage girls international scouting program that helps girls and young women grow in their faith character service to God and to others specs for joining us today for Focus on the Family with Jim Daly on John Fuller today you hear all about the origins of American Heritage girls in the incredible impact they're having on so many young women and work and encourage you to consider how you can join in and I have your daughter participate John. I didn't have the privilege of raising daughters.

We did have a few foster daughters that came to her home when we were fostering so that was an experience. But I did raise two boys and I'm looking forward to the discussion. How many know you have three girls and I love them dearly. They're all adults now and I don't see enough exigencies. Big difference is in girls from boys yes do everything we can to protect our girls and are is in this culture there so many doors that are open and that current of culture. Dr. Dobson used to talk about that help in his day when he was little boy, those doors were not only shot. They were locked, but today whether it's pornography or whatever the issues the cultures pulling kids toward those doors are not locked their wide open and beckoning our kids to come. So it's wonderful to identify organizations that are doing everything they can to teach young people about the biblical truths of biblical values that this country was formed on and I'm excited about covering the content today yet are so many different serious concerns for moms and dads in wheels.

Parents need help to really get a good foundation, a moral foundation for our kids, especially our girls. That's why focus is here. That's why were talking today to Patty Garibay.

She joins us and she and her leadership team are doing such a great job in American Heritage girls to support Christian families and help girls grow up to be godly leaders and influencers in their generation and we have crowd around. We do not mention that it's a lot of a lot of energy.

These give a shout. Girls so we have both leaders as well as those that are participating in American Heritage girls. It's good that everybody my about 15 people around us right Patty. Welcome to focus. It is a pleasure to be with you, probably long overdue. We have no back in the 90s you started this effort and let's let's go there.

What was the impetus for you to start American Heritage girls what was going on, the culture, what was going on with Girl Scouts you heard a Girl Scout site was going on there. While I had been at a chip leader for 12 years and you are Girl Scout yourself absolutely and my mom was my leader and it was just a tradition I wanted to maintain and once we had.

I daughters like John we are so excited about that and also about raising them up in the way they should go when we thought that Girl Scouts being a character development program will be a great way.

It was good for me. It certainly would be good for my daughters and I started to look into them a little bit more as I had served them for about nine years. When I started to have some questions and one of the very first questions really came from Focus on the Family itself I when I was alerted to a sexuality camp that was happening literally in my own backyard while now there was no mistake that that happened in Cincinnati Ohio and at the Cincinnati, Ohio. Mom heard that but I was able to sort of brush that off and say I won't send my daughter to that camp right then later in 1993 the Girl Scouts USA decided that they were going to change their oath their promise that Juliette Gordon low, the founder had created in 1912 and he had maintained it for 80 years, seven wondering why would they make this change to no longer mandate an oath to God in the Girl Scout promise now I knew that a character development program had to be based on something that looks can be the moral barometer. What would provide right from wrong and when you remove God, right yeah so more things came from their eyes. I started to investigate the moral relativism that was very evident in all the curricula the strange way they were handling sexuality and that sexuality camp was pro-abortion, pro-homosexual is horrible when you look at that what you think was going on within the management of the Girl Scouts. To me this is just your observation. I get that. But what why were they feeling like something that had been so successful raising girls helping to raise girls helping parents to raise girls of character, why did they fall prey to what now is on full display woke culture wide back in the 90s was the Girl Scout so vulnerable to the later structure it is creates a vulnerability that allows for administration to come in and take over and we seen this happen time and time again and with them their councils are owned by the national organizations of the national organizations administration changes its way or loses its way. In this instance it's easy for that mission creep to occur. And for me, what, when I was seen as I dug in deeper and again I been a Girl Scout leader for three trips for 12 years. You think I would've known yeah but I didn't. I started to dig and I realized that Betty free Dan had served on the national board Janet Reno any needs or names. If your your my age. You know elderly liberal perspective there very much so and so we started to see the changes I guess were even occurring under my own my own watch, so to speak. And so we we realize this. This snowball has really been going downhill for quite a while, but with any good Christian I think meets to try to make changes and then when that does not happen, you know, you give it your best shot, right, and we did.

We had a small group culture and responsibly for our youth will be trying to raise awareness about what was going on. The Girl Scouts and I thought certainly if they understood who their clientele was they would change their ways, but this had been going on way too long and we were just a bother. Yeah and I and I so appreciate the title of your book. Why curse the darkness when you can light a candle that is part of the problem we have today in the Christian community is the culture is really aiming at us not working with us any longer. And that's a change that's a course change the churches. Gotta get used to. Now, but speak to the title of the book and what that means to you rather than curse the darkness you know do something with her so much to that tell of that book.

My father really inspired me with the name of that book. My father and I had a very wonderful relationship. He had a cute multiple sclerosis. I don't recall him ever walking on his own, he walked me quote unquote down the aisle in his electric wheelchair and so he was a feeble man but a strong tower and sell where he you know they are weak. You can be strong right and that is what my father represented and he would hear these tales as I discovered and was really researching the Girl Scouts he would hear the tales I would come back to him. He was in a nursing home and he was bedridden and I would tell in the next tail and then finally my final, my final attempt was to put a Christian on the Board of Directors for the local Council and the Christian with my husband and accomplished businessman who I know would be an asset and could make positive change when he heard what happened at that annual meeting when my husband and I were really our reputations were just torn apart publicly and they were just making up lies about us. When I told him that he said Patty why curse the darkness when you can light a candle, start something new while you're probably like are you kidding that Girl Scouts like well at the same time frame but was so cool is that my heavenly father was speaking to me as well and he was saying you can do this because I was a very busy mom and I think I was so busy because I wanted to hide and cover-up the stuff I really needed to deal with as a business is a good way to do that is in it while now you're getting to something that's hitting all of us in this culture, all of us Christians what is expected of us. What should we do, how do we light a candle, not just in their scouting but you know your entire life. So that's something were to continue to discuss. I want to get to the conversation you had with your I think your youngest daughter when you made the decision to light a candle and start American Heritage what how did that go down and she was 10 at the time he was 10 and she was in Girl Scouts. He was in girls that like moving in junior high I got a great exciting plan for you honey were going to move to different stay and meet new friends. This can be great, and she's looking I what so I'm assuming it had a little of the flavor, but maybe not so little bag as she heard the struggles I cannot hide these from her. I wanted her to be very aware that in this culture, we need to be ready to fight our battles.

The ones that are worth. And this was worth it. You know she was coming alongside and she was frustrated to she would see how my mom is being treated. There was so many lies and I can go on and on, but she understood that there was unrighteousness and what should have been a righteous culture for the Girl Scouts. Great lesson yes all my goodness into see her today as a leader of our own daughter in American Heritage girls and a very very successful accomplished businesswoman that brings her faith into the workplace. That's a blessing it's been worth it holds you today.

Today she's 34 years. That's great, that's awesome. What's up for the listeners that may not know whether American Heritage girls is all about give us the patch fell asleep direction what it is a Christ centered scout type program that is saturated in biblical worldview. That's the lens that we look everything through it has badges in service and leadership in emotional and social strengths and also this beautiful mentoring the way it's built because I think I had mentioned I had been a leader for three troops and that's in the Girl Scouts and that's because they broke it up by age level are troops are ages 5 to 18, and we build it so that the older girls can train the younger girls and the younger girls can look up to these older girls. Alyssa Titus to approach and then we we saturate that with amazing adults that are Spirit lead that love the Lord and they love the girls in the understand the influence that girls have in the culture that the hand that rocks the cradle does rule the nation and this is important stuff and that's how we get to work alongside one another and that it's so good and again the distinction I'm in your looking at something that started with terrific Christian roots and heritage in the Girl Scouts back then and then they got away from it. They let it go like Harvard and Yale and so many of the institutions in our country you're bringing them right back. I think the founder of the Girl Scouts would be very proud American Heritage that would help sell that's more of what I intended. I think she would say you have a story about a teen girl name Allie who at first glance might not have been the ideal candidate for your organization. Yet American Heritage girls had a huge impact on her life.

What was Allie's story and this this story I get to hear a lot of stories not such a player phrase for our labor in your lifetime where a sale and deserving of that. I carry this picture with me. This is Allie and I'll never forget it. We often times have an event called meet the founder where medium units in the city, and I can meet the girls and I love it. It's so good to not just to be blessed by that but to understand what they like and what we need to grow the program where where there's the holes and so Allie was one of these girls and was in Cincinnati, Ohio. As you can imagine, there were a lot of girls in the at this meet the founder event and she was patiently waiting, waiting, waiting, letting all the girls ahead of Hershey and coal black hair, black fingernails, strong ear rings and I'm sorry get and she's like having some trouble okay just by her appearance. That doesn't necessarily always do that but for me I was anxious. It's an indicator yes and said she was so polite Letting the girls go in and finally at the end. My question every girl when I do meet the founder's.

What is it about American Heritage girls that you like and how can we make things better. Will she stop me right after I said what is it that you like and she said Mrs. Garibay AHT saved my life. I never heard this before what you mean is that I joined as a pioneer which is 1/7 grader junior high awkward time and she said I was cutting.

I didn't want to live. My parents are going through divorce and I really thought it was my fault and so I wanted to take my life. She said that when my friends reached out to me and asked me to come to American Heritage committee just suddenly, I learned that I had something to offer. I could set and achieve goals. I could serve others and learn about my passion. I can understand that I'm not the only one going through this and moreover I can understand the love of God. Now that is why we do American Heritage girls is for girls like Allie yeah I think that's it. John earlier life of your daughter, granddaughter, and I would really encourage you to look into American Heritage girls. We've got details on the website. The link is in the show notes or call us would be happy to tell you more 800 the letter a in the word family 800-232-6459 Patty it was really positive when I looked at the material just how much you cover how much ground in here. Focus we hear from Christian families and non-Christian families about what they're going through their asking for help. And that's good.

We want people to do that and what we see, especially with young girls, identity issues, you know, the social media problem. Oh, eating disorders, all kinds of things that are pressuring our girls to think in ways that are self-destructive, etc. and you know the thing that always surprises me because I did fellowship Christian athletes in high school and I remember you know, people would be like why would you do that, and teachers.

Even I think more so today these teachers and school administrators. It's almost like they fear a child embracing God more than if they were on drugs or alcohol.

What's the big deal this child like me, an orphan kid could live a good life.

Be committed to good things hopefully be a good citizen and even if there right which I'm not saying they are. But even if we will have lived good lives is that a bad thing. You know, it does seem so topsy-turvy doesn't it. So yeah, absolutely. What creates confusion. That's not from the Lord is a God of order at the adversary and he's all around us and he's trying to infiltrate into girls any he's trying to infiltrate their very identity which is their God-given identity. And we know from Genesis 5 dining made them male and female, and now we've got confusion around binary and spectrum in all of this stuff and it's like to live ever thought Jim and we started in 1995. There's no way right gender was a concern, eating disorders, yes anxiety yes fear yes but not tender. What I so appreciate the environment where they can reinforce positive things you know were hopefully a girl who is maybe confused can talk to the other girls, or a leader and say I'm feeling these things.

It does heritage girls you promote that kind of open dialogue all absolutely matter-of-factly creating more and more tools around that for our leaders. One of our latest is raising godly girls guide to gender and identity and you can have a free download of that on our site. It's really helpful because that discussion cannot be ignored. It's all over the media, even if we try to protect our children as we want to, and S were called to there's still going to be having to be bombarded by this. So what are we going to say you freak out when they bring up. We need to be well prepared, well armed in this book will help it to be getting along with other resources that will help a Christian parent have tools in their toolbox. Or maybe we can link to John that's okay with Luke and point them to that resource.

Patty another factory address is spiritual training for girls your your hitting on that, obviously, but something you call grit what is grit like the name I tell you we need to raise up pretty girls and what grid stands for in this context of our leadership curricula, which is so fantastic by the way schoolgirls rooted in truth okay with right so we need to know truth right we need to know Scripture to know truth, but we need to be able to deliver it in a graceful fashion and that's really the beauty of what great with grace isn't so grit and another term is resilience right. We gotta be resilience. We can't just be knocked down once because that'll happen as Christians are to be attacked and we are attacked. If you cannot pull yourself up you will recall those scriptures to encourage you and inform you that you're going to fall prey to all that's out there because the majority out there is against what you're about. Gotta be gritty.

I think Patty people have a problem with American heritage girls because when a recent Supreme Court nominee was asked the question, what's the definition of a woman she couldn't answer.

You know the cultures in trouble if that's true. So here you represent everything that a woman should be right at a little. You asked the question, how do you define what is a woman with this is key piece. You know, it's so interesting how we were trying remove labels for the longest time when I was young and I would put them back on people write speed. I like what is going on right now so these labels of what a girl should be should look like that needs to be broken. Number one because not every girl loves frills and lacing go shopping any cupcakes right yeah right I mean these girls these girls in this beautiful area. They like to go climbing in and they love to.

That's the gritty stuff you know there in the dirt there having fun.

They love the horses and they live all the things that really difficult because they're challenging and that's what makes this program so cool because you can do the easy stuff when you're studying your stuff in your curriculum right but here's where you can experience it.

And so this is crazy to think okay because I like horses and I like to climb. I must be a tomboy, which means I must be a boy.

Which means I'm not a girl right. This is during this is the it's what the cultural guide toward exacting it's totally illogical.

You think that's it about this so there was a woman who ran for president a few years ago my son and I were watching her acceptance speech on TV and he was 14 at the time in the speech. She talked about the need to support the police and people booed at this convention and the next thing she said was, you know, we also have to protect the right to women's reproduction or abortion, and people stood and gave a standing ovation and my 14-year-old son said let's seems really backward audiences response we we are applauding death sitting on her hands about life people that protect us and give us life. I thought wow. Okay. My job is done right. Well that you probably experience that with the girls to American heritage.

They're getting that kind of perspective would choose to look through life with the lens of truth which is Scripture that God is for life.

That's right. And it's timeless mean the relevance of the Scripture.

And that's what were trying to infuse in this program is that it's not something that you put on the shelf or sending you pull it off and then this is my Sunday school. This is my Christian walk and it stays on Sunday.

This program is literally a journey.

It is a family.

As you can see a family is around us today were all part of that family and that Scott's family and to understand that who they are and whose they are the each girl whose they are in their identity is in Christ, they have to understand that everything works for his good and everything has a place and he's got an answer for every issue no matter what sin does your it's right there is an answer in the Scripture. And it's very relevant. I'm sure like any family were all slightly dysfunctional shirts know that you know you're always looking for ways to improve and that's great. One of the ways your trying to improve American heritage girls is by creating mentors out of the older girls so they can mentor the younger girls. That's great, speak to that it works so well, and 70s. Older girls could speak even better to that these girls they love to be able to teach the younger ones skills that they've acquired through the years and also to teach them how they should live. You know now, how should we level, let's model our behaviors and of course the older girls are taking their cues from those amazing adults that are volunteering their time and tell you what I had a profit of sorts on. At one point St. Patty. Someday you can be leading a women's ministry, and I never felt I was the women's ministry kinda girl interested.

I had too much of a sense of humor.

I know and hear.

Look at that she is right because this is become a women's ministry as well because the volunteers and the women in the in this program are growing spiritually they're growing professionally also growing in their roles in their churches because they been part of this organization so it really is writing the net of adulthood, girlhood, and it's bringing the family and what's so crazy is that people find this offensive.

I can't believe you're doing well. I name is very offensive. American heritage girls. Everything about that's offensive earlier, you would reference mental health issues and that's an area of concern that I have. How have you had to adjust or add to the program since the founding. Back in the 90s and now it seems that mental health issues are really wretched they really are skyrocketing, and particularly for girls. The emergency room visits since COBIT started for girls ages 10 to 14 is going to 50% on the statistics are alarming of what's going on and 33% of all girls have a diagnosed anxiety disorder. That's the diagnosed rights for $0.73 on one out of three have this at that we know a lot in this is really at a critical time and you know we know what the Lord says in Scripture about fear and anxiety all stems from fear right is that we should not have it, it's literally a four letter word for the Lord. We should not have fear, you know it is a challenge in this life and I know many people that write us and contact us. The battle with anxieties and we get that and you know again the Lord is there to use that reality sinful world. So let me and with this question.

You have so many success stories you could probably spend hours just going over them letting us know about them, but you describe a young woman named Esther who discovered a full-time career and calling through your organization. What happened with Esther Estes from Colorado Springs with this thing. She had earned her aviation badge is a young tender heart and she at the time it was called tenderfoot tender heart and she loved all things plain okay and she continued to earn that badge at different levels because we sort of accelerate the skill level according to which really gets an in depth dig and also helps a little bit with their vocations and understanding what kind of things really excite them.

Esther had one of those stories, she would go to the Air Force Academy.

One of the hangers she would listen to some of the guys that were there Vietnam. That's World War II vets spin their yarns about their time when they were in active combat. Some of them and she was saved by it and so she decided that she wanted to do her Stars & Stripes project.

Now Jim, this is the highest level of American heritage girls award and I don't even want to equate it to something else because it's far more difficult than that.

Sell the Stars & Stripes award and she wanted to have the living history of the national archives of the big project to get our World War II vets on audio so that it could be forever in the national archives and that's what she did as her Stars & Stripes lives STEMMING from this bad. She erred as a tender heart. Explore pioneer in patriot and then later she became a missionary aviator in Uganda is all the moms went to credit what were signing our daughter up right now.

You know, that's such a good story Betty.

I want to say thank you for just moving with the lighting of the Campbell. I'm so glad you said why don't you do it and what an amazing thing to look back now have the girls involved is 55,000 members at this point that I think represent about 1250 churches you know that our charter partners and we are so grateful for them. Do it like a call with American Heritage girls and I just want to say thanks to all the girls in her. Thank you for being here and the troop leaders as well to the listener.

We want to make you aware of what American Heritage girls is all about. It's a great alternative for your daughters or granddaughters ages 5 to 18.

And if your parenting girls or you just have a heart for equipping the next generation get a copy of Patty's book.

Why curse the darkness when you can.

Why the Campbell consider partnering with us in ministry and make a gift of any amount today to Focus on the Family and we'd love to send you Patty's book is our way of saying thank you donate a copy of this really great book pipetting the link in the episode notes or call 800 K word for 800-232-6459 Mark Hancock joins us to share a story of a faith-based scouting alternative for boys called treelike USA.

If we fail this generation won't be because we over challenge them. It will be because we under challenge on behalf of Jim Daly and the entire team.

Thanks for joining us today for Focus on the Family I'm John Fuller inviting you back once more help you and your family thrive in Christ.

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