Members of Galway City Council have voted to scrap the local authority's opening prayer, and replace it with a silent reflection. 

The prayer was normally recited in the chamber at the start of meetings. 

The vote was split this evening, with seven councillors voting to keep the prayer and seven councillors voting for the change. 

There was one abstention and three councillors, including the mayor, were absent from the meeting as they were away on business. 

Deputy Mayor Pearce Flannery, who was also chairing the meeting, had the casting vote and passed it through the chamber. 

The Fine Gael councillor originally proposed the motion and it was backed by Cllr Collette Connolly.

Last week TDs voted in support of a proposal to add 30 seconds of silent reflection to the daily Dáil prayer, and rejected amendments proposing it be scrapped.