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Cardinal Newman

Conrad Black writes about John Henry Cardinal Newman, the Englishman who is soon to be recognized a saint by the Roman Catholic Church. Perhaps Cardinal Newman is indescribable, invisible like the wind, visible only in his effect on others?

Comments (2)

I am always mystified by the long English tradition of willful ignoring of history regarding Catholic truth claims and the downward spiral to present-day near pagan culture in England (and, of course, in the United States as well).

Bl. John Cardinal Henry Newman converted, plainly and simply, because of what he called "illative" proof that the Catholic Church was and is what it proclaims to be. Other Brits like G. K. Chesterton and Ronald A. Knox (the son of an Anglican bishop of Manchester) came to the same conclusion. I don't really see the need to go all wispy and ethereal - indescribable, invisible like the wind, visible only in his effect on others about such a decision and concomitant life. But that is just me. Cheers

Jeff, to be a bit more clear (hopefully):

I've read about John Cardinal Henry Newman, but I've never really thought I understood his greatness, the way, for instance, I grasp the greatness and grace of St Francis, as described in Chesterton's biography. Or, to take other examples, St Theresa or St Aquinas.

Further, I've always been troubled that Newman was not particularly saintly in his acerbic utterances. But I think he did make amends, especially in his Apologia Pro Vita Sua, which affected readers with its sincerity.

I'm sure that Cardinal Newman is not about to be beatified by the Pope simply because he left the Anglican Church and entered the Catholic Church or because James Joyce admired his prose style.

I'm also confident that his life and writings had long-term effects. He dissipated prejudices against the Catholic Church. He established Catholic University of Ireland (now University College, Dublin), and more than one hundred years after he projected the Oxford Oratory, it was established in 1993. Newman Centres, to provide pastoral services to Catholics at non-Catholic universities, have been established throughout the world.

But for sure the wind metaphor suggests how Cardinal Newman slipped through my hands. . .

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