Dark Christianity
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May 2008
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Score one for Religious Freedom

LJ-SEC: (ORIGINALLY POSTED BY [info]cheap_laugh)

from newsvine

killed in Afghanistan will gather Saturday to dedicate what they call the first government-issued memorial plaque with a Wiccan symbol.

The plaque for Sgt. Patrick Stewart was installed last week on the Veterans Memorial Wall at the Northern Nevada Veterans Cemetery in Fernley, about 30 miles east of Reno.

Stewart's widow, Roberta, has been fighting to make the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs allow the Wiccan pentacle — a five-pointed star enclosed in a circle — for plaques and headstones at veterans' cemeteries.

VA rules recognize more than 30 symbols, including more than a dozen variations of the Christian cross and the atomic whirl used by atheists, but not the pentacle. Wiccans say the pentacle represents earth, air, fire, water and spirit, and some consider themselves good witches, pagans or neo-pagans.

The Nevada Office of Veteran Services, citing its jurisdiction over maintenance of the state cemetery, issued the plaque in September.

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