Gideons go electronic?

Russell Powell

Hotel bibles switching from paper to Kindle is one of the top stories in our breaking news roundup this week.

I read the story in the LA Times where it was strangely headlined "Rocky Raccoon checked into his room, only to find a Kindle?". Apparently the Beatles had a song where the lyric ran "checked into his room / only to find Gideon's Bible". That song had passed me by. But I was intrigued by the story.

The UK Telegraph reported it and there was a lengthy piece on CNN making it clear that it wasn't the Gideons but the hotel which was responsible for this. The Gideons told CNN ""Anything to put the Bible in people's hands is a good thing. It is a fascinating idea, and I'm sure somehow, some way, its time will come for us. But right now just the paper version is the best for what we do."

In more serious news, the attacks on African churches continue, this time in Kenya. Our Kenyan brothers and sisters need our prayers, and so do those in Vietnam according to this story from Compass news.

The election of an Islamist President in Egypt is also a point for prayer, and Bishop Michael Nazir-Ali writes in the Telegraph "Not only is Egypt the most populated country in the Arab Middle East, it also has the largest number of Christians in the region and a sizeable secularised middle-class in the cities. What happens there will have implications for much of the Arab and Muslim worlds."

Other stories worth noting - a big rise in the number of evangelicals in catholic Brazil, the Australia Insitute states the obvious fact that social media is no cure for loneliness, and veteran TV star Andy Griffiths has died. His wife Cindi said "Andy was a person of incredibly strong Christian faith and was prepared for the day he would be called Home to his Lord."