Committee decides to keep daily Dáil prayer

An additional 30 seconds of reflection will now follow the prayer in the Dáil and Seanad

dail, government, independents, fine gael, enda kenny, taoiseach, vote,

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An Oireachtas committee has decided to keep the daily prayer in the Dáil and Seanad.

The Ceann Comhairle and Clerk of the Seanad lead the prayer in their respective houses at the start of each day's business.

The prayer says: "Direct, we beseech Thee, O Lord, our actions by Thy holy inspirations and carry them on by Thy gracious assistance; that every word and work of ours may always begin from Thee, and by Thee be happily ended; through Christ our Lord. Amen."

It is also said in Irish.

The Irish Times reports that the Oireachtas Committee on Procedures and Privileges yesterday agreed to keep the prayer in both languages, as well as adding an additional 30 seconds of reflection.

A number of opposition groups have previously called for the prayer - which was originally introduced in 1932 - to be scrapped.

Solidarity TD Paul Murphy told Newstalk last year: "In some ways it's symbolic of items that are very important - which is that we don't have a separation of church and state in this country.

"We are about tolerance. I think tolerance would mean we don't have an explicitly religious moment of reflection at the start of the day," he added.

Separately, the committee deferred a decision on the Dáil dress code until next week.

The attire of TDs has proven a fresh source of debate in recent weeks.