A Bible and framed Bible verse have been removed from a display at a Veteran’s Administration clinic.
Fox News reports that the Bible and Scripture verse were part of a “Missing Man Table” which was set up by volunteers at the clinic.
Military Religious Freedom Foundation founder Mikey Weinstein said the display violated the U.S. Constitution and stated he was filing a complaint on behalf of nearly a dozen military veterans who use the clinic, some of which are Christian.
However, clinic administrator Brian Reinhart said that he knew of no other complaints besides Weinstein’s.
Reinhart decided to comply with Weinstein’s demand, however, since a few veterans had expressed concern, and had the Bible removed from the display.
“I just wanted to let you know that the Bible has been removed from our POW table and the Bible verse has been removed from the framed scripture,” Reinhart wrote in an email to Weinstein.
Weinstein applauded Reinhart’s action.
“MRFF’s veteran client soldiers and we at the MRFF as well, applaud this VA Clinic Administrator’s sage wisdom and courage in recognizing that the U.S. military is comprised of hundreds if not thousands of diverse faiths as well as no faiths,” he wrote in a statement. “We heartily commend his taking decisive and swift action to remedy the situation so that the MIA/POW table truly honors all.”
Ron Crews, the executive director of the Chaplain Alliance for Religious Liberty, disagrees with Weinstein, stating that “MIA/POW tables have been part of military tradition for generations. They have always included certain elements including a Bible.”
“It is a sad day when the Veteran's Administration caves to one narrow view of the proper way to honor the courage and sacrifice of those who have dedicated their lives in service of their country,” Crews continued. “Many have died to protect the right of Americans to have and read the Bible. Surely we can honor their sacrifice by allowing a Bible at their table of remembrance.”
Publication date: March 1, 2016