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Norwich Council Looks For Ways to Keep Prayer At Meetings

Norwich Council has suspended the opening prayer at council meetings following a Supreme Court decision, but hopes to find a lawful way to keep the tradition.

NORWICH - The Township of Norwich is looking at ways to keep the prayer at the beginning of their council meetings.
 
In April the Supreme Court of Canada ruled that prayer should be eliminated from council meetings in Canada. Mayor Larry Martin tells Heart FM he was very surprised to hear the decision from the Supreme Court. "I know I have talked to some mayors and they say, 'Well we go into another room and have a prayer and then come out.' So basically we have the leaders of our community going into a back room to have a prayer, and that's not right."

Norwich was the only council in Oxford who began their meetings with a prayer and it was done on a rotation basis by councillors.

Martin says they are going to suspend the prayer for the meeting tonight and will take a serious look at it during the council session in May. He says they have one member of council away on vacation and wants to have everyone present before making a decision.
 
Martin wants council to explore a legal way to keep saying the prayer even it it is not an official part of the meeting.

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