“Every thoughtful mind amongst us, whether priest or layman, will thank the courageous writer who throws upon our insular prejudices the flashlights of other civilisations, and shows us certain defects which we can only neglect at our own peril. We hope that this little book will find its way to every student’s desk in Ireland and abroad, and that its lessons will be taken to heart by professors and alumni alike. It is worth reading if only for its style, which is far above that usually assumed by writers on similar subjects. But its chief value is in the deep insight it manifests as to the wants of the age and the necessary equipment of the young apostles of our race, whose mission will be to strange peoples and curious, though some times sympathetic, souls who are seeking the light and failing to find it. It is a book to be read with humility and a total absence of that mild conceit which refuses to accept any but domestic and partial criticism. The words are those of a thinker and an orator.”— Canon Sheehan in the Freeman’s Journal.
“Anyone who has lived five years in Australia would advise every young priest coming to this country to have a copy of Father Phelan’s admirable book in his luggage, and read it more than once. The young ecclesiastic coming hither who treats lightly the advice given him will find by-and-by that every line of the book is true; every priest who has lived a few years on the Australian mission will know already that it is so.”—Melbourne Advocate.
“The Rev. M. Phelan, S.J., stresses the necessity of culture of mind and manners for young priests and seminarians. Father Phelan, himself a noted preacher, devotes several helpful chapters to the means of acquiring excellence in preaching. The book is brimful of valuable hints and helps, and their value is not diminished by the fact that the style is racy and readable throughout. The following is intended for Irish readers, but the advice has wider application:—’. . . He should not commit the signal folly of attempting to engraft an imported accent on his own; he should speak as an Irishman, but as an educated Irishman.’ ‘The Young Priest’s Keepsake’ should become a vade-mecum.”—America.
“With considerable skill and plenty of plain speaking, Father Phelan gives some admirable advice to young priests in regard to the study of English and the composition and delivery of sermons. His experiences in Ireland and on the foreign missions are his claim to say what his opinion is, and his opinion is weighty. Father Phelan has wise counsels to give, and gives them in a most pleasing way. He is always bright, always interesting, and always instructive. His book deserves to be known to the clergy at large, and we wish it the circulation it deserves.”—Catholic Times.