Opening prayers exist for a variety of religious events and gatherings where people with religious convictions are found. There are opening prayers for Bible studies, church services, weddings and even business meetings. Most opening prayers contain requests to keep God's (or whichever deity the group believes in or follows) presence at the event to bring good fortune to everyone involved.
The words or verses in an opening prayer depend on the purpose of the occasion. If an opening prayer is required for a meeting, it may contain language that asks for assistance in maintaining good communication among the partners. An opening prayer for a wedding may ask that the couple continue to receive blessings throughout their walk in life together.
Opening prayers may be of varying lengths, with some very brief and some longer. One short opening prayer, as listed in the1979 Book of Common Prayer from the Protestant Episcopal Church in the United States, reads as follows: "Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit: as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen." Alleluia may be added to the end of this prayer unless the Lent holiday is being observed.