GREEN BAY - Acknowledging its opposition, heads were bowed and hands were together as Brown County supervisors opened their Wednesday night meeting as they always do.
"We're not going to end the prayer at the beginning of the meeting," said chairman Guy Zima.
The Freedom From Religion Foundation says a Brown County resident complaint prompted it to send a letter to the county's board. The group wants the board to stop its traditional opening prayer at its meetings. The letter reads prayer at government meetings is unnecessary, inappropriate, and divisive.
"We don't think that Brown County supervisors have to stop praying, we are just asking them to pray on their own time and dime," said Annie Laurie Gaylor, the co-president of the Freedom From Religion Foudnation.
Freedom From Religion says upon its request, Eau Claire and Ashland county boards recently stopped praying to begin their meetings.
Chairman Guy Zima doesn't expect any change in Brown County.
"In a way they want to impose their religion on us, which is no religion, I guess they want everyone to have no religion," said Zima.
"When they pray they embarrass and exclude those of us who are nonbelievers or who are not Christian," said Gaylor.
"I've been informed that prayer at the beginning of meetings is not out of bounds at all," said Zima.
Brown County's board will discuss Freedom From Religion's prayer request on a committee level. If there is any action on the request, it could come in the next month.
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