Scandic backs down over Bible

A hotel chain which faced storms of protest from Christians after it removed copies of the Bible from its rooms has backed down.

Scandic Hotels, the largest hotel operator in the Nordic region, now plans to keep copies of the New Testament in its rooms.

“We will complement the New Testament by also offering the Koran and the Tanach in our hotel receptions for those guests who want the. We will keep the Bibles in the hotel rooms as before,” wrote Scandic’s CEO Frank Fiskers, according to Christian newspaper Dagen.

It was reported in April that the Bible had been removed after a guest complained. The official reason given by Scandic was that it wanted to be inclusive, offering a variety of religious texts on an equal footing in hotel receptions.

The decision enraged Christian groups, including the Church of Sweden. A number of bishops said they had blacklisted Scandic following the move.

Even after Thursday’s about turn some bishops were not willing to grant absolution to the company.

Esbjörn Hagberg, bishop in the diocese of Karlstad, said he was heartened by the decision but added that he would continue the boycott.

“I hope now that they will re-evaluate the view of humanity that lay behind this decision,” he said, adding that the fact that Scandic offers guests porn channels was also an issue for him.

Scandic was bought by Swedish investment company EQT last month, after being sold by Hilton.