- Associated Press - Thursday, February 4, 2016

PHOENIX (AP) - Several Phoenix City Council members want voters to decide whether to replace a longstanding tradition of prayer before council meetings with a moment of silent prayer.

The council voted 5-4 Wednesday to scrap spoken invocations after a member of a Tucson-based group called The Satanic Temple was scheduled to deliver the prayer before the council’s Feb. 17 meeting.

Group members say they don’t worship Satan but invoke the name as a metaphor in opposing what they call religious tyranny.

Council member Sal DiCiccio (dih-SEE’-see-oh) says he and two other council members are asking for a council vote to put the prayer issue on Phoenix’s next election ballot.

DiCiccio unsuccessfully sought to implement a system to have the mayor and council members take turns deciding who gives spoken invocations.

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