(CHARLOTTE NEWS OBSERVER) — Joining a move toward nonsectarian prayer, the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department has asked its chaplains to stop including Jesus in their invocations at official department ceremonies.

The change, which applies to such events as police graduations, promotions and memorials, took place about a month ago, said Maj. John Diggs, who heads the department’s volunteer chaplain program. The goal: greater sensitivity to all religions practiced by the more than 2,000 police employees.

“This is not in any way an effort to demean anybody’s Christian beliefs,” Diggs said. “It’s to show respect for all the religious practices in our organization. CMPD is not anybody’s church.”

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