"O Jesus, Eternal Priest, keep Your priests within the shelter of Your Sacred Heart…"

Now seems an especially apt moment to recall this prayer below.

I first discovered it this spring, in St. John the Evangelist Church, on the ground floor of the building where I work in Manhattan.  They had several yellow cards on a table, with this prayer printed on it.  I took one home, folded in my wallet, and more or less forgot about it.  I think it’s no accident that tonight, I discovered it again.

I think we need it — now, more than ever.


O Jesus, Eternal Priest, keep your priests within the shelter of your sacred heart, where none may touch them.

Keep unstained their anointed hands, which daily touch your sacred body.

Keep unsullied their lips, daily purpled with your precious blood.

Keep pure and unearthly their hearts, sealed with the sublime mark of your priesthood.

Let your holy love surround them, and shield them from the world’s contagion.

Bless their labors with abundant fruit,

and may the souls to whom they minister be their joy and consolation here on earth,

and in heaven, their everlasting crown.

Mary, Mother of Priests, pray for priests and vocations to the priesthood.

– St. Therese of Lisieux

Photo by Stephen Golder from “These Hands Bring Me Jesus”


  1. Perfect timing and perfect beauty. Should we expect less from the Doctor of the Church?

  2. love this prayer. I have been saying it for years.
    I received a little prayer book as a gift one day after a purchase at St. Pauls Church in Manhattan. It has a number of great prayers in it. I have been ussing that book ever since. this is one of the prayers I say every morning. we should pray for all our priests, deacons, religious and consecrated life. and vocations for all. peace +

  3. Thank you for posting this beautiful prayer. Always needed, but perhaps today more than ever. All ye angels and saints, Pray for us!

  4. There will be a worldwide rosary relay for priests on July 1, the feast of the Sacred Heart. Pope Benedict XVI has written a prayer especially for this event, which will take place at 48 different Marian shrines around the world — one every half hour — on July 1.

    Details here:


  5. Here is the text of the Pope’s prayer:

    Prayer for Priests

    eternal High Priest, you offered yourself to the
    Father on the altar of the Cross and through the
    outpouring of the Holy Spirit gave your priestly
    people a share in your redeeming sacrifice.
    Hear our prayer for the sanctification of our priests.
    Grant that all who are ordained to the ministerial
    priesthood may be ever more conformed to you,
    the divine Master. May they preach the
    Gospel with pure heart and clear conscience.
    Let them be shepherds according to your own Heart,
    single- minded in service to you and to the Church
    and shining examples of a holy,simple and joyful life.
    Through the prayers of the Blessed Virgin Mary,
    your Mother and ours,draw all priests and the flocks
    entrusted to their care to the fullness of eternal life where
    you live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit,
    one God,for ever and ever.


    His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI’s Prayer for Priests
    (specially composed for Worldpriest)


  6. Very nice prayer, nicer than the one I was saying on EWTN. Thanks!

  7. Amen! Thanks for this much needed post.

  8. Last night I asked St. Therese for her prayers about this. She loves priests so much.

    We should also remember to pray for bishops. Bishops are priests too.

  9. Thank you for your prayerful support, Greg, and for the support of all those whose prayers will be occasioned by this post!

  10. What a beautiful prayer. Thank you so much for posting this.. I will try to pray this daily. God Bless You

  11. Thanks for sharing! This is a great prayer to offer after Mass, before departing from God’s Temple.

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