NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC (WECT) – Commissioners in New Hanover County made it clear during their meeting Monday morning that the invocation cannot reference Jesus or Christ. Referencing a specific God is now against the law.
A group pressed charges in Forsyth County saying they favored Christianity, and the Fourth District Court of Appeals refused to hear an appeal to the case that says political organizations can't have prayer the names a specific God.
New Hanover County Commissioner Chair Ted Davis said the county usually has a local minister give the invocation at the beginning of meetings.
Since the appeal was denied and the ruling is law, Davis said New Hanover County would be breaking the law if they let someone include Christ in a prayer before the commissioners meeting.
"I think it's a sad day, but that's from a personal standpoint," said Davis. "But again, that is the law and we're going to abide by the law."
The words "non-sectarian invocation" was written at the top of Monday's agenda packet. Previous agendas just said "invocation" on them.