The Catholic Parish of
Saint John Henry Newman

 Covering most of East Leeds

Get to know our Parish Saint – Who was Cardinal Newman?

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Since Advent 2016 we have been praying for the canonisation of our parish patron, Blessed John Henry Newman. Our prayers have been answered - Deo Gratias! On 13th October 2019 Pope Francis will declare him a saint at St Peter's Basilica in Rome. Over the course of the next ten weeks, we will use this space in the Bulletin to shed a little more light on the life of England's newest saint.

Episode 2 - Newman as an undergraduate

In this, our second instalment of Newman's life, we look at his time as a student at Oxford.

Newman went up to Trinity College, University of Oxford as a 16-year old in 1817. Studying both classics and mathematics, he worked meticulously hard, often reading for 14 hours a day! Alas as his Final exams approached, like so many students since, he experienced "a grave feeling" at the prospect before him. Disaster struck when sitting his finals in 1820, he suffered a nervous breakdown - the consequences of having "over read" (as he himself put it) and he scrapped a 2:2 in Classics and a fail in Maths. This left him deeply disappointed. Despite such a set-back, the young Newman redeemed himself by winning a much- coveted fellowship at Oriel College. After hearing of his success following an open competition which was described by Oriel's head as a "trial, not of how much men knew, but of how they knew", Newman sprinted to his new college from his rooms at Trinity. A legacy of his time at Oriel was Newman's reform of academic teaching with more emphasis being placed on pastoral care of students.

Half-century later, in 1878, Trinity College was to make him their first honorary fellow.

Next week: Newman enters Anglican ministry

Published Fri 26th Jul 2019 23:08:55
Last Modified on Fri 26th Jul 2019 23:14:50

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