Tag Archives: Franny and Zooey

The Jesus Prayer and the Way of This Pilgrim

by Matt Kappadakunnel

man praying

As an Eastern Catholic, I find tremendous solidarity with Orthodox Christians. One of these areas of commonality is our love for the Jesus Prayer.

I discovered the Jesus Prayer in an unlikely place and from an unlikely source.

In 2010, during my first year of the Jesuit Novitiate, I borrowed JD Salinger’s Franny and Zooey from the community library. I loved reading The Catcher in the Rye in high school and shortly after college, so I was intrigued to read another Salinger novel. 

But I didn’t expect this Salinger novel to have a spiritual impact on me.

Zooey introduced me to the Jesus Prayer. When she explained this prayer to her boyfriend Lane, she enlightened me, and I am sure many others, about the encounter with Christ and the experience of His Peace by praying this simple, ancient prayer.

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