GIRL Guides in Australia will no longer promise to do their
duty to God or to serve the Queen.
After a lengthy consultation with Guides and their leaders, the
promise "to do my duty to God, to serve the Queen and my country"
has been changed. A Guide will now promise to do her best to be
true to herself, develop her beliefs, and serve her community and
The Chief Commissioner, Helen Geard, said that the changes
better reflected the "wider diversity" in Australia, and the desire
of the organisation to "move with the times". Although some had
been reluctant to see the reference to God removed, surveys of
Guides had found that "doing duty to God is probably not language
that is relevant to our young people", she said.
Monarchist groups have criticised the change, but supporters of
Australia's becoming a republic have welcomed it.
There have been Guide groups in Australia since 1909; it is
estimated that, since then, more than one million Australian women
and girls have either been Guides or still are. The organisation in
Australia does not have church connections.