As a protestant I had difficulty with the whole repetitive prayer thing;  “It’s mindless…reminds me of Buddists reciting ‘Om’…it’s a ‘canned’ prayer…it’s very catholic…” And on and on and on. Two years ago when I started this crazy journey that lead to the Catholic Church, it was pointed out to me that Jesus taught the crowd a ‘canned’ prayer, aka The Lord’s Prayer. “O.K.,” I thought.

Have any of you read Anne Rice’s, “Christ The Lord: Out of Egypt?” Rice does a great job portraying the jewish life of the Holy Family. What struck me was the ‘repetitive’ prayer witnessed throughout, “Hear O Israel, the Lord your God is One.” “O.K.,” I thought.

As a new catholic, the rosary was a tough sell and I’ll admit that I don’t recite it often. But I do recite a prayer that even protestants would have no objection:

Lord Jesus Christ,

Son of God,

Have Mercy on Me,

a Sinner.



I have chotkis; they look like rosaries but without the crucifix and they have 100 beads (or knots). I count off the number of Jesus prayers using the beads. Chotkis are used among Orthodox Christians but I bought mine at St. Joseph’s Abbey, a Trappist monastery in Spencer, MA. Walking along in the woods, saying the prayer, you get into a rhythm and focusing on the Lord becomes easier. (Much easier for me than extemporaneous prayer – though there is a place for that, too.) Since the angels in Heaven pray without ceasing, I suppose I can do my bit as well.


2 responses to “Chotkis

  1. Welcome home!

    The Rosary was different for me as well.And I don’t pray it maybe as much as I should but it does help me focus more on Christ’s mysteries and also the prayer intentions I have.

    May God continue to bless your journey!

  2. notcanadian44

    “…it does help me focus more on Christ’s mysteries…” And isn’t that the point of prayer? Funny how “repetitive” prayer is the opposite of all the preconceived notions floating out there. God Bless!

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