A vicar had 400 indecent images of children in a hidden gallery on his mobile phone, a court heard.
The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) said 112 of the images that 44-year-old Christopher Goble had were of the "most serious category".
Goble, of Ilmington, Warwickshire, also told of his sexual interest in children in a chat message, the CPS said.
He appeared at Warwick Crown Court where he admitted three counts of making indecent photographs of a child.
Goble served within the Coventry Diocese across five parishes and six churches in south Warwickshire.
It is understood that no children from his parish were victims of the offences.
Andrew Crump of CPS West Midlands said: "Christopher Goble is a vicar, who in his position of authority, should have been safeguarding children."
Goble, of The Rectory, Ilmington, will be sentenced in the week beginning 9 December.
In a statement, the Diocese of Coventry offered its "unreserved apology to all those affected by these crimes".
Follow BBC West Midlands on Facebook, on Twitter, and sign up for local news updates direct to your phone.