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rofessor Ambrose is abducted after sending his friend Father Brown an ancient prayer book which supposedly can locate the long disappeared Lannington rosary, said to hold healing powers. Aided by Lady Felicia's chauffeur Sid the priest uses the book to find clues which will lead him to the rosary. There is a deadline as a ransom note arrives, informing the father that the rosary must be delivered to save his friend's life whilst the quest is complicated by the arrival of supposedly reformed criminal Flambeau, who claims he is working as a mercenary for the Papacy to find the relic. And then there is a third party, the actual kidnapper, whom Father Brown must expose.

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