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Frederick County revisits meeting-prayer issue

FREDERICK — The Frederick County Commissioners are considering loosening a proposed public-meeting prayer policy.

They are scheduled to discuss the matter Thursday morning in Frederick.

County Attorney John Mathias has proposed eliminating language allowing only those of monotheistic religions to offer an opening invocation. He says such a restriction would require the county to determine which religions are monotheistic.

The draft policy has been criticized by pagans and Wiccans as unfairly excluding them. Some call it a “Wiccan-proof” policy.

It’s based on a policy in Chesterfield County, Va., that survived a federal court challenge by a Wiccan who wasn’t allowed to participate.