Happy 100th Birthday To…

The Gideon Bible.

Long before cable television, spa treatments and eco-friendly soaps and shampoos became staples in hotel rooms, there was the Bible — the Gideon Bible.

And the book with the familiar two-handled pitcher and torch on its cover that most guests find inside hotel nightstands doesn’t appear to be going anywhere anytime soon.

Gideons International is celebrating its 100th anniversary distributing Bibles and has begun efforts to hand out more Scriptures in the U.S. to boost a distribution rate that’s remained relatively flat in recent years.

How are you celebrating the occasion?

(via The Daily Profaner)

  • Nick

    I’m playing Pokemon Diamond and ordering a pizza from a local pizzeria!

  • Bill M

    I’m listening to “Rocky Raccoon”.

  • mikespeir

    I wasn’t planning anything special.

    Frankly, if hotel management wants Bibles in its nightstands, I don’t care. I’ve studied the Bible all my life and taught it. Didn’t keep me from becoming an atheist.

  • http://notreallyalice.wordpress.com Alice

    I threw out two Gideon’s Bibles last year. If that’s not a celebration, I don’t know what is.

  • http://www.sheeptoshawl.com writerdd

    By burning a Gideon Bible?

    Not really. I don’t have one. Mr. WriterDD has thrown them in the trash before, though.

  • http://www.otmatheist.com hoverFrog

    You could recycle them. I understand that old paper can be used to make all sorts of useful things…like toilet paper.

  • JSug

    Does anyone here know how it became such a standard practice for hotels to put them in the rooms? I mean, I assume that this is done with the cooperation of the hotel owners/managers, and not just random Gideons checking into the rooms and leaving them there (though I understand that’s how it started).

  • «bønez_brigade»

    I like to leave a little message in Gideon Bibles at every hotel stop, calling special attention to a few stimulating verses (think Leviticus, Malachi, Song of Solomon). The next reader of said Bibles will know entertainment, thanks to my kind & thoughtful highlighting.

    As for the mini-green NTs they hand out on campus, those are great for projectile motion experiments.

  • stephanie

    I’ve always had a soft spot for the Gideons. They used to pass out these little New Testaments on campus and I always kept one in my jacket pocket for concerts. Concert security would check the jacket first, pull out the Bible and then shoo me through quickly to get rid of me. I went to dozens concerts without anyone ever finding the camera and tape recorder I smuggled in thanks to the work of the Gideons… :)

  • ddr

    The Freedom from Religion Foundation (www.ffrf.org) makes stickers that you can put on bibles in your hotel room. One says “Warning: Literal Belief in this book may endanger your health and life.” And the other one talks about the biblical character Gideon who killed thousands and committed other crimes. I need to order a few of those for my vacation in February.

  • Todd

    Actually, I’m traveling right now, and pleasantly, there is no Gideon Bible in this room. I’m gonna order up some room service and continue “Parenting Beyond Belief.”

  • Gribblethemunchkin

    Staying in a Liverpool hotel one night i took the Gideon bible as my free gift as is my custom, only to find a message written in the front cover.

    It read
    “All the best, God”

    This single discovery made me laugh so much it made the whole evenings stay perfect.

    I’ve been know to loot gideons bibles, and to write messages in the front cover. My favourite being
    “Warning! The contents of this book include Murder, rape, torture, genocide, mutiliation, slavery and child abuse and may not be suitable for children or those of a nervous disposition.
    The following work is fiction and any resemblance to characters living or dead is entirely coincidental.”

  • http://virtualityforreal.blogspot.com Allytude

    The last time I stayed in a hotel, there was a Book of Mormon there- which I had to purloin for my home collection, now if only I found a Koran or two.

  • http://robbietaylor.net Robbie Taylor

    One of my favorite souvenirs of living in Europe was a Gideon Bible that a friend brought me from an excursion to Amsterdam – the New Testament in English, French and Dutch.


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