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Phoenix-area city cancels invocation by satanic organization

(Facebook Photo)

PHOENIX — A Phoenix suburb canceled Monday a planned city council invocation that was to be given by a satanic organization.

In a brief press release, the city of Scottsdale said its July 6 city council opening prayer would not be given by the Satanic Temple.

“The city is not going to deviate from its long-standing practice of having the invocation given only by representatives from institutions that have a substantial connection to the Scottsdale community,” the release said. “Therefore, we are making other arrangements for the invocation.”

The city said it would not give any further statements or interviews on the topic.

Scottsdale scheduled the invocation in February after the group’s request to give a similar prayer caused an uproar among the Phoenix City Council.

The Scottsdale prayer was originally scheduled to be given in April, but members of the Satanic Temple likely had a scheduling conflict.

Stu de Haan with the Satanic Temple said people have been concerned about the satanic prayer, but a lot of them don’t understand the religion.

“We’ve gotten a lot of ridiculous questions, like are we going to sacrifice babies and what we’re calling ‘blood libel,’” he said. “There’s nothing ever like that in Satanism.”

Instead, de Haan said the religion is a kind of metaphor for rebelling against tyranny and favors “logic and reason over superstition and the supernatural.”

“We should have our voice and we believe that reason should trump superstition in general,” he said.

KTAR’s Corbin Carson contributed to this report.

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