BIBLES have been banished from Victorian hospital bedsides and
some schools because they may offend non-Christians.
Almost all Melbourne’s major hospitals have withdrawn the Holy
Book from rooms and several schools have refused to allow their students to
be given free Bibles.
The Gideons International Australia, which distributes Bibles free
to hospitals, schools and motels, blames political correctness.
"The reason most often given is that ‘We are a multicultural
organisation and we don’t want to offend anyone’," Gideons’ executive director
Trevor Monson said.
"It is a terrible shame because we get lots of letters from
people who say having a Bible by their hospital bed has been a great comfort
to them during their darkened days."
The Catholic Church condemned the ban and labelled arguments that
Bibles could offend non-Christians as "silly".
"To say that other faiths might be offended if a Bible is there
is nonsense," Archdiocese of Melbourne auxiliary bishop Christopher Prowse
Hospitals including the Royal Melbourne, Royal Children’s, Austin,
The Alfred, Monash Medical Centre, Box Hill, Maroondah, Dandenong and Casey
have all removed Bibles. Royal Melbourne spokesman Rod Jackson-Smith denied
a ban, but said: "We don’t (have Bibles in each room) any more.
"Because we have so many people from different religious backgrounds
it is considered inappropriate.
Well I guess there are some plagues in the Bible. Just ask the
Egyptians. Or maybe they had misheard and thought the Bible included the Mold