Robert Edward Kennedy is an American Jesuit priest, professor of theology, psychoanalyst and Zen rōshi in the White Plum lineage.
He studied with Yamada Koun in Japan in the 1970s.
Kennedy joined the Jesuits on August 8, 1951. At the end of a long spiritual and academic training he was ordained a priest in Japan in 1965. Glassman Roshi installed Kennedy as sensei in 1991 and conferred Inka (his final seal of approval) in 1997, making him a roshi (master).
Kennedy was for a time chairperson of the theology department of Saint Peter"s College in Jersey City, New Jersey.
Currently, he teaches theology and used to teach Japanese. To date, Kennedy has installed 12 dharma successors: Janet Richardson Roshi, Charles Birx Roshi, Ellen Birx Roshi, Janet Abels Roshi, Ray Cicetti Sensei, Gregory Abels Sensei, Paul Schubert Sensei, Inge von Wobeser-Hopfner Sensei, Patrick Eastman Roshi, Michael Holleran Sensei, Carl Bachmann Sensei, Carl Viggiani Sensei, Miriam Healy Sensei, and Kevin Hunt Sensei (a Trappist monk from Street Joseph"s Abbey at Spencer, Mass).