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Minneapolis Suburb Bans Distribution of Gideon Bibles in Schools

The Board of Education of St. Louis Park, a suburb of Minneapolis, withdrew permission it had given to the Gideon Society to distribute Gideon Bibles to public school pupils in St. Louis Park. The board acted following protests by the American Civil Liberties Union and the Jewish Community Relations Council of Minnesota.

The objectors advised the school board that the Supreme Court had upheld a New Jersey high court decision barring distribution of the Bibles and that the distribution of the book here was probably unconstitutional.

The board’s decision to permit the distribution of the Bibles was revealed only when schoolchildren brought home authorization forms to be signed by their parents. A Gideon Society spokesman here said the distribution of Bibles was part of a national program to combat juvenile delinquency.