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Wylie mayor says women can’t pray at city council meetings in email to fellow councilmember

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In an email, the Mayor of Wylie said only men should lead the prayer at council meetings and cited two bible verses about women remaining silent.

In an email posted online, the mayor Wylie says that women cannot lead prayer at public city council meetings because the Bible forbids it, citing multiple verses from the new testament.

The email exchange began Thursday May 14, when a Mayor Pro Tem Jeff Forrester asked Mayor Eric Hogue if a local group, Youth with a Mission, could “come to our next meeting and lead us in prayer before the meeting.”

In the email Mayor Pro Tem Forrester in email said that, over the last five weeks the group has been walking through the city of Wylie and “praying over our city and our citizens”.

“I believe this is a great testament to the youth in our city and their devotion to God,” Forrester said.

“All I ask is that those leading the public prayer be young men,” Hogue responded. “As a preacher for the Cottonwood Church of Christ, we take the two verses below literally.”

Mayor Hogue then cites verses to back up his claims, saying that he “takes these verses literally”.

He first quotes 1 Corinthians 14:34-35, saying: “Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience as also saith the law. And if they will learn anything, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church.”

The second verse he quotes is 1 Timothy 2:11-12: “Let the women learn in silence with all subjection. But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence.”

“So, I have always requested that a man lead in the invocation. I understand not everyone may agree with me, but I can’t go against my conscience,” the email from Hogue reads. “But I would love to have the group come and visit with them and let a couple of guys lead a prayer.”

Mayor Hogue is currently serving his last term as Mayor of the city of Wylie after 12 years.

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