The Catholic Parish of
Saint John Henry Newman

 Covering most of East Leeds

Get to know our Parish Saint – Who was Cardinal Newman? - Episode 9

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In our Ninth instalment of Newman's life, we examine Newman's crisis of faith..

Episode 9 - A Second Spring: Newman and the renewal of Catholicism


The canonisation is significant because it opens the way to the Church's recognition of Newman the theologian as a "Doctor of the Church". Why should he be regarded as such?

St. John Henry NewmanFirst, because of the influence he has already exerted. Newman has often been described as the "Father of Vatican II". This is because many of the things he wrote and preached about anticipated the teachings of the Second Vatican Council. Take for example Newman's study of the Early Church Fathers. A return to the original "sources" of Christianity was a preoccupation of the Second VaticanCouncil. Like Newman, the Council emphasized that theology should not be separated from history, that the personal is more important than the notional. In the Vatican II Constitution on Divine Revelation the Council acknowledged the fact of doctrinal development, an idea which came from Newman himself.

Second, because Newman has much to tell us in our current times. Newman saw that religious faith is one of the many kinds of faith that make up daily life like forming relationships with other people. Newman enlarged a limited conception of reason which failed to do justice to the actual ways in which the human mind reasons. As the writer Ian Ker has noted "In today's secular world, where holding even basic Christian moral convictions is regarded as "extremist" and therefore by definition irrational, Newman is a powerful champion of the reasonableness of faith".

Next week: Newman's process towards sainthood




Published Sat 28th Sep 2019 09:31:27
Last Modified on Sat 28th Sep 2019 09:36:22

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