Frederick Adopts Revised Prayer Policy

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FREDERICK, Md. (AP) — The Frederick County Commissioners are loosening a proposed public-meeting prayer policy.

They voted Thursday in Frederick to adopt changes recommended by County Attorney John Mathias.

A key revision eliminates language allowing only those of monotheistic religions to offer the opening invocation. Mathias says such a restriction would have required the county to determine which religions are monotheistic.

The earlier version was criticized by pagans and Wiccans as unfairly excluding them. Some called it a “Wiccan-proof” policy.

It was based on a policy in Chesterfield County, Va., that survived a federal court challenge by a Wiccan who wasn’t allowed to give an opening invocation.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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