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GIDEON UPDATE DECEMBER -2016ImagesKudoNews/TCSGideonsSchullerGirls300w.jpg

ImagesKudoNews/TCSGideonsSchullerGirls108w.jpg Are hotels checking out of Bible business?
•••In 1991, Troy Cory helped bring the Gideon Bibles to China. He travelled with two executives of the Gideons to Beijing who supplied a local printshop with the plates to have the bibles printed in China. Click for MoreRead More

Sometime in the future you might not find a Bible in the bedside nightstand. A recent survey by STR, a hospitality analytics company, found that the percentage of hotels that offer religious materials in rooms has dropped significantly over the last decade.
•••• Hotels also have been under pressure lately from atheist groups.
•••• The nonprofit group Freedom From Religion Foundation that promotes separation of church and state, wrote to major hotel companies last year, asking them to keep Bibles out of hotel rooms.
•••• Bibles started to become a hotel standard in the late 1800s when three traveling businessmen founded Gideons International with a plan to spread the Gospels by placing the Bible in hotel rooms across the country.
•••• The nonprofit group now has about 270,000 members in 200 countries. In its latest fiscal year, Gideon International spent about $100 million to distribute Bibles to hotels, prisons, hospitals and other locations, about the same amount as in 2015, according to the group's financial statements.
•••• "The decline of religious materials in hotels, as cited in the survey, is reflective of increasing secularism and independence in the world," he said. "This has resulted in an erosion of spiritual awareness."
•••• Marriott International, the world's largest hotel company, supplies a Bible and the Book of Mormon in the rooms of every other hotel in the franchise. But the company has recently decided that no religious materials should be offered at two of its newest millennial-oriented hotel brands, Moxy and Edition hotels.
•••• Among the reasons for the change, according to industry experts, is a need to appeal to younger American travelers who are less devout than their parents or grandparents and to avoid offending international travelers such as Muslims or Buddhists.
•••• However, travelers who regularly read the Bible probably already have one with them, either in book or digital form.
Click More tviStory 105- Are hotels checking out of the bible business
A SPRING ISSUE - MAY - tviNews Events
TVInews - 105 Since Troy Cory Negotiated With China To Print the first Christian Bibles for the Gideons in 1991, -- About 14 million Christian Bibles have been printed in China. Gideon Officials: Wendell McClinton, Don Johnson China Delagation: Chen Suyu, Wang Xiang, China Ambassador, Dr. Robert Schuller, Wayne Gan, Troy Cory of China Expo.

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May - 2006 / Since 1991, about 14 million Christian Bibles have been printed in China. In the photo above Dr. Robert Schuller is surrounded by officials from China Expo. Photo left, Troy is seen with Gideon executives, Wendell McClinton, and Don Johnson overlooking Tiananmen Square, celebrating the approval of the printing of over 1-million Christian Bibles with the Gideon logo.
•"Since 1992," said Troy Cory of China Expo, "the Chinese government has eased its restrictions on religious practices in most areas of the country. Beijing has allowed an estimated 14 million new Bibles to be printed in China, like the one shown in Troy's hand in photo above. CLICK FOR PHOTO CLOSE-UP.
Last week at Garden Grove's Crystal Cathedral, much of the story leading up to the Troy Cory - Gideon accomplishment, was told. MORE STORY


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1. Feature Story / "After the China delegation left Schuller's cathedral offices in 1991," said Troy Cory, "the door was wide open to China for Dr. Robert Schuller." Schuller, the founder of the Crystal Cathedral located in Garden Grove California, "was given the opportunity to have as many Gideon Bibles printed in China, as he wished to distribute."
It wasn't until 15 years later, that Schuller's first meeting with the China ambassador to the U.S., Wang Xiang, and Troy Cory, pictured above, was mentioned. "Only a few guests at this month's special May Day, cathedral Bible exhibition, had knowledge of the historical meeting that took place at the cathedral, brought together by Troy," said a China Expo official.
Some told much of the story leading up to the accomplishment, that Troy and the Chinese delegation brought to the cathedral and Dr. Schuller over 15 years ago.
"We want to let the people of the U.S. know that there are real Christians in China," said the Rev. Cao Shengje, president of the Shanghai-based China Christian Council, which sponsored the exhibition.
The first exhibition of its kind outside China, the show covered six galleries in the cathedral's arboretum with more than 50 items related to the history of Christianity in China, including an "imperial edition" of the Bible published in 1894 and presented by a group of Christian women to the Empress Dowager Cixi of the Qing Dynasty. Among other notable objects: a 65-foot calligraphy scroll called the "Song of Songs."
"I love you very, very deeply," the Rev. Robert H. Schuller, the cathedral's founder, told the gathering of Chinese dignitaries and visitors at the show's opening April 21.
"I think that China is going to change the world because Christ is going to be known and spread through you," he said.
The Garden Grove exhibition closed April 28 and is scheduled to move to Atlanta for an engagement this month and to New York City in June.
Although the first Christian Bible entered China about the year 635, experts said, it took centuries for its ideas to spread. During the Cultural Revolution of the 1960s, according to Shengje, the Bible was banned and almost all copies of it burned.

It wasn't until I convinced Beijing officials in 1991, that the best place to print the Bibles, "would be in the military printing facilities," Troy said. "The Gideon officials from Nashville, Wendell McClinton, and Don Johnson, left the plates with them, and within four weeks, the Bibles were printed and ready for distribution to a few selected hotels in Beijing and Shanghai.
Since that time, the Chinese government has eased its restrictions on religious practices in the country, allowing an unlimited supply of Bibles to be printed, "as long as they had cash customers," continued Troy.
Today, Shengje said, there are about 16 million practicing Christians in China -- a small percentage of the population "but growing very quickly."
Chinese college students inevitably ask where truth lies, question values they grew up with and explore other faiths and nonfaiths, reported a LATimes reporter.

3. Editor's Note / QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS - and Ten phone polls.
Years of sex abuse scandals in the Roman Catholic Church didn't keep many parishioners from going to church, but that didn't mean their wallets followed, according to a study released this month, (May, 2006), by the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate.
Ten phone polls, seven of them partly funded by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, show little difference in church attendance from 2001 to 2005. Accusations of sex abuse within the church began attracting national coverage in March 2002.
But the percentage of participants who regularly donated money to their local parish gradually fell from 78% in January 2001 to 72% in October 2004, though donations saw a slight rise in October 2005 to 74%.
A third of participants between 2001 and 2002 said the sexual abuse scandals were the reason they donated less.
The sample size of the polls varied. Researchers contacted about 1,200 self-identified Catholics nationwide in most of the surveys.
• Low Opinion of Atheists
U.S. parents would rather their child marry a Muslim than settle down with an atheist, according to a recent study by the University of Minnesota.
The survey of 2,081 people nationwide revealed that atheists top a list of groups that Americans find "problematic in both public and private life."
Researchers gave participants a list of groups -- including conservative Christians, gays and lesbians, and recent immigrants -- and asked them which groups related to their "vision of America."
Atheists were chosen the least, with about 40% of participants responding that atheists "do not at all agree with our vision of American society."
Respondents were also asked about potential spouses for their children, and atheists brought up the rear again. About 48% said they would disapprove of their child marrying one.
Muslims were the second least-favorable suitors, with about 34% of respondents saying they'd disapprove.
Atheists account for about 3% of the U.S. population.

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