Mouskouri had had her international breakthrough with the German language single "Weiße Rosen aus Athen" ("White Roses from Athens") in 1961, a song originally adapted from a Greek folk melody. The song was later translated into several different languages and went on to become one of Mouskouri's signature tunes. When she received the offer to represent Luxembourg at the Eurovision Song Contest in early 1963 she and her family had recently relocated from Athens, Greece to Paris, France, where she was signed to the Philips-Fontana label.
"À force de prier" is a ballad, with Mouskouri telling the object of her affections that she intends to have him love her "by persistently praying" for this to occur. Moskouri recorded her entry in French, German (as "Die Worte dieser Nacht"), English ("The One That Got Away") and Italian ("La notte non lo sa").
The song was performed sixteenth on the night, following Monaco's Françoise Hardy with "L'amour s'en va". At the close of voting, it had received 13 points, placing 8th in a field of 16.
Although "À force de prier" was only a minor international success for Mouskouri, it won her the prestigious Grand Prix du Disque in France that same year, and her Eurovision appearance also caught the attention of noted French composer Michel Legrand, who went on to write and arrange two major hits for her in the francophone markets; "Les parapluies de Cherbourg" (1964) and "L'enfant au tambour" (1965).