Tuesday, October 29, 2013

The Chotki

"But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’"  ~Luke 18:13

my chotki, a treasured and much used gift from a dear friend
My friend, Christi Jentz, who writes a beautiful blog, Lumen Christi, shares the background of the chotki as she learned from our mutual friend, Mary Anne Urlakis, here in this post.  The chotki, a traditional prayer rope in the Orthodox tradition upon which one prays the "Jesus Prayer," is a favored prayer form of Pope Francis.  Fr. Robert Barron teaches that when praying the Jesus Prayer, one should breath in, as in taking in the Holy Spirit, while praying, "Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God," and then exhale, as though releasing our sins, while praying, "have mercy on me, a sinner."  When you are through, you may use the tassel to dry your tears. Such prayerful meditation, while counting the knots of the chotki, is sure to bring peace to the soul.

Lord Jesus Christ, son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.


  1. The Chotki is truly one of my favorite instruments for fruitful prayer. In my humble experience, the Jesus prayer, "Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the Living God, have Mercy on Me the Poor Sinner (or other slight variations of the same)," prayed on the simple and beautiful chotki or prayer beads is indeed an abundant source of spiritual blessing. Thank you Anne and Christi for taking the time and initiative to promote the use of this treasure.

    In Christ,

    Mary Anne

  2. Mary Anne, it is I who thank you. You have helped to bring a richness to my faith through sharing your love for the Orthodox tradition. You bless!

    1. Trying to wash dishes wearing my Chotki with the large tassle is a challenge! I think this is "illegal" but I finally hung it around my neck (ok, ok ...just temporarily). It is truly a reminder to pray always because the tassle is so VERY prominent! Christi Marie

  3. Christi, you never fail to put a smile on my face! Thank you for bringing so much joy into the faith! I'm sure if your tassel didn't swipe the dishwater now and then, it would lose it's purpose, since it's meant to dry tears. Your poor tassel would remain pitifully dry because I'm sure that tears and few and far between in your lovely life!

  4. Soapy water and tears? A true penance ( but I'll pass on that one ;0).