Satanic Temple Gets Opening Prayers Banned From Phoenix City Council Meetings

Members of the Satanic Temple of Tucson have forced the Phoenix City Council to ban its customary opening invocation before meetings. The organization had applied for and was approved to deliver the prayer at the February 17 council meeting. Councilman Sal DiCiccio decided to put a stop to it. Along with two other members of the council, he requested an “emergency clause” in order to request immediate changes to the council’s invocation policy.

A meeting was then held late this week where DiCiccio proposed limiting the invocation to Phoenix residents and choosing a rotating council member to pick which clergy member would deliver it. Currently, a rotating group of clergy delivers the invocation. The motions did not pass, and instead the mayor and the council in a 5–4 split voted to replace the regular invocation with a one minute moment of silence.

Members of the public were allowed to speak for three minutes each. The room reportedly was packed, with people unable to get in. Representatives from the Secular Coalition for Arizona and the Freedom From Religion Foundation spoke in favor of the Satanic invocation. Several ministers spoke against it, as did a state legislator, who brought along a letter signed by 20 legislators. Satanic Temple spokesman Lucien Greaves, blogging at The Friendly Atheist, complained, “The unending line of Christian representatives was tedious and aggravating.”

Read the rest of the article at The Stream

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