Space porn: These images are (quite literally) out of this world
LONDON (AP) — Britain’s Girl Guides have dropped a reference to God in their pledge.
Gone is the reference to loving God, replaced by a call to “be true to myself and develop my beliefs.” The new pledge unveiled Wednesday does retain a reference to serving the queen.
The long established British scouting organization — officially named Girlguiding — says some 44,000 people responded to a call for consultations on the new pledge.
Chief Guide Gill Slocombe says she hopes the change will encourage more girls to join.
“We knew that some people found our Promise confusing on this point and that it discouraged some girls and volunteers from joining us,” she said. “We hope that the new wording will help us reach out to girls and women who might not have considered guiding before — so that even more girls can benefit from everything guiding can offer.”
The pledge was last changed in 1994. The reference to God dates back to the founding of the Girl Guides in 1910. Earlier changes had been designed to make the pledge acceptable to people of many faiths, and now it has been changed in a way designed to keep non-religious girls (and their parents) from feeling excluded.
In another nod to changing times, the promise “to serve my queen and my country” has been altered to “serve the queen and my community.”
The National Secular Society, which had lobbied for removing the reference to religion from the pledge, welcomed the news.
Campaigns manager Stephen Evans said it was a “hugely positive and welcome development” that would make the organization more inclusive and relevant.
It said it sends a “clear signal that the organization is equally welcoming to all girls,” he said.
Girlguiding is part of the global scouting movement established by Robert Baden-Powell. The World Organization of the Scout Movement now claims more than 30 million male and female members in 161 countries.
NASA astronaut Mike Hopkins
On December 28, 2013, Expedition 38 crew member Mike Hopkins participating in the second of two space walks to replace a degraded pump module on the International Space Station. (NASA astronaut Rick Mastracchio is reflected in his helmet!)
The Soyuz TMA-10M
The Soyuz TMA-10M headed towards the International Space Station with crew members from Expedition 37 onboard.
40 years ago the Apollo 8 mission flew up to the moon, orbited it ten times and then returned to Earth. This picture was taken from that flight and shows the Earth as it seemingly rises in similar fashion to a sunrise.
Sunrise from Expedition 36
NASA Flight Engineer Karen L. Nyberg of Expedition 36 took this photo of the sun rising -- a sight they saw nearly 16 times per day due to the speed of the International Space Station's orbit around the earth.
A pair of NanoRacks CubeSats -- nanosattelite spacecrafts carrying experiments -- were launched by Expedition 38.