"FFRF is pleased to learn that NEXCOM has taken seriously its constitutional obligation to remain neutral toward religion as a representative of our federal government," FFRF Sam Grover told me. "By removing Bibles from Navy-run lodges, the Navy has taken a step to ensure that it is not sending the impermissible message that Christians are favored over guests with other religious beliefs or over those guests with no religion."
The Bibles had been placed in the rooms, free of charge, by Gideons International.
An active duty service member contacted me and alerted me the Bibles were being taken out of hotel rooms and a lodge housekeeper told American Family Association the same thing.
"They told us to put them in boxes where they would be taken to a donation center somewhere," the housekeeper told AFA.
The Navy even has a plan in the event, heaven forbid, a guest leaves behind their Bible.
"All religious materials left by a Navy Lodge guest, in the future, will be dealt with following established procedures for lost and found property," the directive states.
FFRF said they were alerted to the Bible controversy by "two concerned service members."
"One complainant noted that he 'never saw a Book of Mormon or Koran' in any Navy-run lodge," read an FFRF letter to the Navy.
Mikey Weinstein, the president of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation, told me he was delighted to hear of the Navy's directive. His organization has been trying for more than seven years to cleanse military hotel rooms of the Good Book.
"We are happy to see the military doing that," Weinstein said. "For years we've been telling them those Bibles are a violation of the Establishment Clause."
Ron Crews, executive director of the Chaplain Alliance for Religious Liberty, blasted the Navy for removing the Bibles.
"This is just one more assault by military leaders against anything Christian," Crews told me. "It's getting tiresome to see senior military leaders cave in to those who appear to be offended by Christians, by Christian symbols and now by the Bible itself."
Crews said there's nothing wrong with allowing the Gideons to place Bibles in Navy lodges -- at no cost to the Navy.
"Our military service men and women have every right to look at literature in hotel rooms -- including the Scriptures," he said.