The Tennessee Prayer Breakfast traces its history back at least 50 years when the event was actually hosted by the sitting governor. In 1980, Nashville entrepreneur and former ambassador to France Joe M. Rodgers, led an ad hoc Citizens’ Committee that organized the Tennessee Prayer Breakfast in its present format, which is Tennessee's version of the National Prayer Breakfast.
The Tennessee Prayer Breakfast is presented annually by The Citizens' Committee, which is a volunteer group of Christian business leaders, elected officials, and ministry leaders. The event is held annually each year in Nashville prior to the conclusion of the Tennessee General Assembly's legislative session, and features worship through music, a short uplifting message, and prayer for God's grace on the State of Tennessee, its elected officials and its citizens.
Some 500 to 800 guests attend from across the state representing government, business, education, and churches.
Past speakers have included the Honorable Bill Haslam and First Lady Crissy Haslam, Dr. Russell Moore, Gary Haugen, Franklin Graham, Richard Stearns, Michael W. Smith, Tom Landry, Charles Colson, Elizabeth Dole, Charles Swindoll, Anne Graham Lotz, Rachel Macy Stafford, Phil Vischer and Scott Hamilton.
Musical guests have included Chris Tomlin, Matthew West, Tom Douglas, Nicole C. Mullen, Michael W. Smith, Ellie Holcomb, Mandisa, Melinda Doolittle, Amy Grant, Allison Krauss, CeCe Winans, Larnelle Harris, Josh Turner, the Fisk Jubilee Singers, the Gaither Vocal Band, The Katinas, Rev. Lawrence Thomison and the Nashville Choir.