- Newman’s “Inspiring Influence as a Great Teacher of the Faith and as a Spiritual Guide is Being Ever More Clearly Perceived in our Own Day.” (John Paul II)
- Newman Studies Journal
- The Catholic University of America Press
- Volume 2, Number 2, Fall 2005
- pp. 3-5
- View Citation
- Additional Information
NEWMAN STUDIES JOURNAL 3 EDITORIAL PREFACE NEWMAN’S “INSPIRING INFLUENCE AS A GREAT TEACHER OF THE FAITH AND AS A SPIRITUAL GUIDE IS BEING EVER MORE CLEARLY PERCEIVED IN OUR OWN DAY.” (JOHN PAUL II) It was, of course, coincidental that the spring issue of Newman Studies Journal— with its front cover citation of the Newman bicentennial letter of Pope John Paul II—appeared at the time of the pontiff’s death. The copy for the spring number went to the publishers some three months before its actual appearance at the end of March 2005. This fall issue again features the Millais portrait of Cardinal Newman1 , but with a different quotation from the writings of Pope John Paul II—this time from his letter to Archbishop George Dwyer, Archbishop of Birmingham and then President of the Episcopal Conference of England and Wales, on the occasion of the centenary of Newman’s cardinalate.2 The papal letter began by pointing out that the “elevation of Newman to the Cardinalate, like his conversion to the Catholic Church, is an event that transcends the simple historical fact, as well as the importance it had for his own country.” The pope then recognized Newman’s “inspiring influence as a great teacher of the faith and as a spiritual guide”—“Newman himself, with almost prophetic vision, was convinced that he was working and suffering for the defence and affirmation of the cause of religion and of the Church not only in his own time but also in the future.” A similar recognition had been operative at the time when Pope Leo XIII raised Newman to the cardinalate in 1879: ...the Pope [Leo XIII] meant to pay tribute to the genius of Newman and to give public expression to his own personal appreciation of Newman's merits. He intended to recognize the value of Newman's many writings in defence of God and the Church. In this way Pope Leo upheld and encouraged all those—inside and outside the Catholic Church—who regarded Newman as their spiritual teacher and guide in the way of holiness.3 Yet, unlike the transient influence of many other philosophers, theologians, and spiritual writers of the 19th century, the “philosophical and theological thought and the spirituality of Cardinal Newman, so deeply rooted in and enriched by Sacred 1 The Millais portrait of Newman is reporduced with the permission of the National Portrait Gallery; information about the portrait is available in NSJ 2:1 (Spring 2005), 4-6 2 The Pope’s letter,dated 7 April 1979,is available at:http://www.newmanreader.org/canonization/popes /or21may79.html; it was previously published in L’Osservatore Romano (English edition), 21 May 1979, 582, and in Acta Apostolicae Sedis 71 (1979). 3 Ibid. NEWMAN STUDIES JOURNAL 4 Scripture and the teachings of the Fathers, still retain their particular originality and value.” Moreover,the letter of Pope John Paul II described this influence as not simply intra-denominational but ecumenical: “Newman is seen to have a special ecumenical vocation not only for his own country but also for the whole Church.” After expressing his hope that the “teaching of the great Cardinal will continue to inspire an ever more effective fulfillment of the Church's mission in the modern world, and that it will help to renew the spiritual life of her members and hasten the restoration of unity among all Christians,” Pope John Paul II expressed his “personal interest in the process for beatification of this‘good and faithful servant’(cf.Mt 25:21) of Christ and the Church.” CONTENTS “Newman the Cardinal: 125 Years (1879-2004)” was the theme selected for last year’s National Newman Conference at the University of St. Mary of the Lake (Mundelein, IL) in August 2004. Among the conference presentations on Newman’s cardinalate was that of Thomas Kudzma, who discussed the congratulatory “addresses”—many of which were formally prepared and personally presented to the cardinal, who customarily gave a prepared reply. A well selected sampling of these frequently overlooked“addresses and replies”is found in the lead article of this issue, which also provides a good sense of how loved and venerated Newman was by his contemporaries...