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Before I indulged myself in the process of reading this book, I had figured out a scenario where Owen Meany is either a person suffering from some kind of disease that only prayer could cure or a normal person who had involved himself in some kind of inhumane activities. This kind of assumption was brought about by the author’s critical title that entailed prayer. In many incidences, prayer is offered for those who are seriously in need of divine intervention due to sickness or some immoral actions. The latter is mostly associated with refusal to repent or acknowledge evil acts. Prayer is therefore offered to facilitate repentance.

However, this assumption was not to be as Owen turns out to be a not so earthly individual, with extraordinary characters and strong belief in moral acts. The author takes a different act, only portraying Owen as someone who was used as a divine intervention to a religious leader’s immoral acts with his mother. Instead of bringing out Owen as immoral person, he suggests that he is just but a product of immorality that grips our churches, spearheaded by our church leaders. This kind of approach leads us to think that such acts may results into issues beyond our control, and that death is the ultimate punishment for immorality. Significantly, the author illustrates that all major characters in the book eventually died as a result of immoral acts rampant in the society. One person’s death that we would have considered normal is Owen’s death. However, he dies from a blown off grenade, which symbolizes human’s continuous killings of each other by making of the deadly weapons. 

A Prayer for Owen Meany is the title of the book. This book has one lingering theme among many others, faith. Religion is clearly highlighted in many aspects, and most prominently, the relationship between faith and religion, and faith and doubt. One character John Wheelwright, who is also the narrator, is introduced to faith in God’s power by Owen Meany, an extraordinary child considered weird in many aspects. Owen may be considered a symbol of something unique; something extraordinary and out of this world, considering his dwarf stature, intellectual ability and extraordinarily talented. In spite of his immense ability, his name ‘Meany’ portrays something little, signifying a lower social hierarchy. Despite all this physical weirdness, Owen considers himself a representative of God- that God reveals Himself through him.  He even knows how and when he would die. In other words, he represents a clear relationship between little people and faith- a belief that God comes for the world’s belittled people and not the earthly and big individuals.

John on the other hand acknowledges how Owen introduced him to faith. He believes that Owen is an epitome of religious faith. It also illustrates what faith can do to an individual as one aspires to develop his life in the world. Owen accidentally kills John’s mother, and he believes that God had planned her demise, and that it only emerged that the plan was executed through him. The revelation that Owen was born like Jesus is a clear manifestation of how people could define their religious beliefs and faith in God- that something miraculous can still happen in the world. The belief that miracles still exist shows how faith can determine people’s lifestyle and relationship with God, through prayer, thus A Prayer for Owen.

Code: Sample20

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