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Federal officials restored a Bible to a prisoner of war display at a veterans hospital and said it “will not be bullied” by an activist group that wants it removed.
Department of Veterans Affairs staff at the Manchester, New Hampshire, veterans hospital “temporarily removed the Bible from the display out of an abundance of caution” after receiving a complaint, the VA’s national headquarters said in a statement Tuesday.
Removal - Manchester - VAMC - Outpouring - Complaints
“Following that removal, Manchester VAMC received an outpouring of complaints from Veterans and other stakeholders – many of whom dropped off Bibles at the facility – in protest of this action,” the VA said. “We apologize to the Veterans, families and other stakeholders who were offended by the facility’s incorrect removal of this Bible.”
The Bible is part of a display in the hospital’s lobby honoring prisoners of war and missing soldiers.
Nonprofit - Military - Religious - Freedom - Foundation
A nonprofit called the Military Religious Freedom Foundation filed a lawsuit Tuesday to remove the Bible permanently. “This is an action requesting injunctive relief pursuant to the first amendment of the Constitution of the United States of America. The plaintiff, James Chamberlain, and others are seeking the removal of a Christian Bible from the POW/MIA table in the entrance way of the Manchester VA Medical Center,” it says.
The lawsuit says Chamerlain is a “devout Christian” and veteran but “despite his strong personal religious beliefs, he believes that the Christian Bible has no place being displayed on the POW/MIA table.”
It says 14 other veterans also complained.
The hospital removed the Bible after the nonprofit initially complained in January, according to the lawsuit, but then the Bible returned in a...
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