St Expeditus, we humbly beg thee to come to our aid so that thy prompt and certain intercession will obtain for us, from our Divine Lord, the grace of a happy and swift solution to the matter which now concerns us. (Mention your intention.)

O St Expeditus, who didst receive from the Lord the crown of righteousness which He has promised to those who love Him, – PRAY FOR US.

Patron of Youth, – PRAY FOR US. Help of Scholars, – PRAY FOR US.
Model of Soldiers, – PRAY FOR US. Protector of Travellers, – PRAY FOR US.

Advocate of Sinners, – PRAY FOR US. Health of the Sick, – PRAY FOR US.
Consolation of the Afflicted, – PRAY FOR US. Mediator of Lawsuits, – PRAY FOR US.

Our help in urgent matters, – PRAY FOR US. Who dost teach us never to defer, – PRAY FOR US. Ardent and trusting in prayer, – PRAY FOR US.

Most faithful support of those who hope in thee, – PRAY FOR US.
Whose protection at the hour of death insures salvation, – PRAY FOR US.

Lamb of God, Who takes away the sins of the world, – SPARE US, O LORD.
Lamb of God, Who takes away the sins of the world, – GRACIOUSLY HEAR US, O LORD.
Lamb of God, Who takes away the sins of the world, – HAVE MERCY ON US, O LORD.

V. Pray for us, St Expeditus,
R. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Let us pray:

Almighty and Eternal God, Who art the consolation of the afflicted and the support of those in pain, deign to receive the cries of our distress, so that by the intercession and merits of thy glorious martyr, St Expeditus, we may joyfully experience in our extreme necessity the help of thy mercy, through Christ Our Lord.


At one time there was much talk of a Saint Expeditus, and some good people were led to believe that, when there was need of haste, petitioning Saint Expeditus was likely to meet with prompt settlement.

However, there is no adequate reason to think that any such saint was ever invoked in the early Christian centuries; in fact it is more than doubtful whether the saint ever existed.

In the “Hieronymianum” the name Expeditus occurs among a group of martyrs both on the 18th and 19th of April, being assigned in the one case to Rome, and in the other to Melitene in Armenia; but there is no vestige of any tradition which would corroborate either mention, whereas there is much to suggest that in both lists the introduction of the name is merely a copyist’s blunder. Hundreds of similar blunders have been quite definitely proved to exist in the same document.

There is also a story which pretends to explain the origin of this “devotion” by an incident of modern date. A packing case, we are told, containing a body of a saint from the catacombs, was sent to a community of nuns in Paris.

The date of its dispatch was indicated by the use of the word “spedito”, but the recipients mistook this for the name of the martyr and set to work with great energy to propagate his cult.

From these simple beginnings, it is asserted, a devotion to St. Expeditus spread rapidly through many Catholic countries. It should be pointed out that though the recognition of St. Expeditus as the patron of dispatch depends beyond doubt upon a play upon words – still the particular story about the Paris nuns falls to pieces, because as far back as 1781 this supposed martyr, St. Expeditus, was chosen patron of the town of Acireale in Sicily, and because pictures of him were in existence in Germany in the eighteenth century which plainly depicted him as a saint to be invoked against procrastination.


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