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News Story
Updated: 05/06/2014 03:58:02PM

Ruling favors

council prayer

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Rev. Dr. Rob Schenck, of Faith and Action, center, speaks in front of the Supreme Court with Raymond Moore, left, and Patty Bills, both also of Faith and Action, during a news conference, Monday, May 5, 2014, in Washington, in favor of the ruling by the court's conservative majority that was a victory for the town of Greece, N.Y., outside of Rochester. A narrowly divided Supreme Court upheld decidedly Christian prayers at the start of local council meetings on Monday, declaring them in line with long national traditions though the country has grown more religiously diverse. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

FILE - In this March 18, 2014 file photo, Pastor Mike Metzger, right, of First Bible Baptist Church, leads a moment of prayer at the start of the Greece Town Board meeting in Greece, N.Y. The Supreme Court said Monday that prayers that open town council meetings do not violate the Constitution even if they routinely stress Christianity. (AP Photo/Carolyn Thompson)

FILE - In this March 18, 2014 file photo, Pastor Mike Metzger, right, of First Bible Baptist Church, leads a moment of prayer at the start of the Greece Town Board meeting in Greece, N.Y. The Supreme Court said Monday that prayers that open town council meetings do not violate the Constitution even if they routinely stress Christianity. (AP Photo/Carolyn Thompson)

Reverend Dr. Rob Schenck, of Faith and Action, center, speaks in front of the Supreme Court with Raymond Moore, left, and Patty Bills, both also of Faith and Action, during a news conference, Monday, May 5, 2014, in Washington, in favor of the ruling by the court's conservative majority that was a victory for the town of Greece, N.Y., outside of Rochester. A narrowly divided Supreme Court upheld decidedly Christian prayers at the start of local council meetings on Monday, declaring them in line with long national traditions though the country has grown more religiously diverse. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

Reverend Dr. Rob Schenck, of Faith and Action, center, speaks in front of the Supreme Court with Raymond Moore, left, and Patty Bills, both also of Faith and Action, during a news conference, Monday, May 5, 2014, in Washington, in favor of the ruling by the court's conservative majority that was a victory for the town of Greece, N.Y., outside of Rochester. A narrowly divided Supreme Court upheld decidedly Christian prayers at the start of local council meetings on Monday, declaring them in line with long national traditions though the country has grown more religiously diverse. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

By MARK SHERMAN

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WASHINGTON — A narrowly divided Supreme Court upheld decidedly Christian prayers at the start of local council meetings on Monday, declaring them in line with long national traditions though the country has grown more religiously diverse.

The content of the prayers is not significant as long as they do not denigrate non-Christians or try to win converts, the court said in a 5-4 decision backed by its conservative majority.

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