John Henry Newman

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Newman, John Henry


Born Feb. 21, 1801, in London; died Aug. 11, 1890, in Edgbaston, near Birmingham. English theologian, educational theoretician, publicist, and church figure. Son of a banker.

Newman graduated from Oxford University and until 1833 combined university teaching with the duties of a vicar. His first work, The Arians of the Fourth Century (1833), already foreshadowed the direction that Newman would take in his later attempts to consolidate the religious doctrine of the Anglican Church. However, while working toward this goal in 90 periodically issued Tracts for the Times (1833–41), the aim of which was to bring a resounding halt to the “domination of liberalism in religious thought” and to revive “the true concept of the interrelationship between Anglicanism and the Catholic religion as a whole,” Newman moved further and further away from Anglicanism. In 1845 he converted to Catholicism and in 1847 became a priest of the Roman Catholic Church. From 1854 through 1858, Newman was rector of the Catholic University in Dublin. In 1879 he became a cardinal.

In his work Apologia pro vita sua (1864), Newman preached active acceptance of authoritarian religious views based on intuition and aided by force of will and moral feeling. Newman developed the position philosophically in An Essay in Aid of a Grammar of Assent (1870).

Newman’s works spread widely among Catholics and were translated into various languages. In the disputes between the representatives of Thomism and Scotism, Newman took the side of the followers of John Duns Scotus and defended the principle of an “open theology” free of scholastic confines. He thereby became a precursor of the renewal and modernization of Catholicism in the mid-20th century.


Works, vols. 1–37. London, 1868–81.
Essays and Sketches, vols. 1–3. New York, 1948.
The Letters and Diaries, vols. 1–18. London-New York, 1961–68.
The Philosophical Notebook of J. H. Newman (in 2 vols.), vol. 1. New York, 1969.


Ward, W. The Life of Cardinal Newman, vols. 1–2. London, 1912.
Bouyer, L. Newman: Sa Vie, sa spiritualité. Paris, 1952.
Hollis, C. Newman and the Modern World. New York, 1968.


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The intellectual contribution of Blessed John Henry Cardinal Newman and of Pope Benedict XVI can help us in this endeavour.
While each of these colleges celebrates a unique history and identity, we all share the vision of John Henry Cardinal Newman.
As John Henry Cardinal Newman wrote, "Whene'r across this sinful flesh of mine / I draw the Holy Sign, / All good thoughts stir within me and renew / Their slumbering strength divine; / Till there springs up a courage high and true /To suffer and to do.
He said: "Most Holy Father, the Archbishop of Birmingham and the Bishops' Conference of England and Wales humbly request that the Venerable Servant of God, John Henry Cardinal Newman, priest of the Congregation of the Oratory, be proclaimed Blessed.
Professor John Hunter, from the University of Birmingham, cast doubt on the theory after testing soil froman area near the cemeterywhere Venerable John Henry Cardinal Newman was exhumed.
Father Greggory Winterton at Birmingham Oratory with the Venerable John Henry Cardinal Newman Westmacott bust 1841.
Its ranks would come to include John Henry Cardinal Newman, the greatest nineteenth-century convert to Catholicism, and the present-day Toronto Oratorians, who have thrived under the leadership of Father Jonathan Robinson.
Father Paul Chavasse, who heads the cause for the canonisation of the Venerable John Henry Cardinal Newman, said he believed that the likelihood of beatification of the clergyman in the next few months - which is itself a key step on the path to sainthood - was now "very high.