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Royal Rangers is an activity-based, small-group church ministry for boys in grades K-12 providing “Christlike character formation and servant leadership development for boys and young men in a highly relational and fun environment.” A camping theme is at the heart of most activities, along with a merit award system whereby Royal Rangers must demonstrate specific knowledge and abilities. Since 1962, this program developed by Rev. Johnnie Barnes has since spread to churches in over 90 other nations. The uniforms, mottoes, practices and operation borrow heavily from Scouting, but the underlying values are somewhat different. The General Council of the Assemblies of God runs Royal Rangers USA in the United States and Royal Rangers International is an official mission of the council.
Leaders called commanders provide boys direction during a weekly outpost meeting. A strong mentoring relationship is established between commanders and Royal Ranger boys and girls. Weekly meetings and many other activities are designed to develop young people mentally, physically, spiritually and socially.
The Royal Rangers ministry was originally developed with boys in mind. As such, only boys participate in the program within the United States, unless the church does not have a girls ministry program; programs in some other nations (e.g. Australia) allow both boys and girls to participate. The girls-only counterpart program to Royal Rangers within the United States is called Mpact Girls Clubs, formerly Missionettes.
The program includes outdoor adventures through camping, water activities, hiking, rappelling, and mountain climbing, as well as challenging indoor adventures. Opportunities year-round will occur at the outpost, district, or national levels. The ultimate award for every Royal Ranger is the Gold Medal of Achievement.
The Royal Rangers motto is "Ready", meaning "Ready for anything! Ready to work, play, serve, worship, live, and obey God’s Word"
- Royal Rangers Leader Manual, c.2010, Gospel Publishing House, Springfield, MO USA, p12
- Obituary, Springfield (MO) News-Leader, June 17, 1989, page 2B
- "Royal Rangers International | About Us | National Royal Rangers". royalrangers.com. The General Council of the Assemblies of God. Retrieved 21 January 2017.
- "About Us". National Royal Rangers. Retrieved 3 December 2016.