Friday, June 19, 2009

Cardinals Approve Miracle for Newman Beatification

Cardinals approve miracle for Newman beatification

Miraculous cure of severe spinal disorder is attributed to Cardinal Newman bringing him a step closer to sainthood

Peter Jennings

The miracle necessary for the beatification of the Venerable John Henry Cardinal Newman (1801-1890) was approved by the cardinals of the Vatican Congregation for the Causes of Saints during their meeting in Rome on June 2.

The Congregation is now working on the document that will include a résumé of the life of Cardinal Newman and the miraculous cure attributed to this Servant of God of Jack Sullivan, a Permanent Deacon from the Archdiocese of Boston, Massachusetts.

Jack Sullivan, aged 70, who lives with his wife Carol in Marshfield, near Boston, was cured of an extremely serious spinal disorder on August 15, 2001, the Solemnity of the Assumption, following his intense intercession to Cardinal Newman.

When completed the document will be taken by the Perfect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, Archbishop Angelo Amato, S.D.B., to Pope Benedict XVI who will authorize the promulgation of a decree.

The Pope, who is taking a personal interest in the Cause, was first introduced to the theology of Cardinal Newman in January 1946 when he was a young seminary student in Germany.


At present opinion is divided as to the venue for the Beatification Ceremony between a location in Rome or Westminster Cathedral in London. There are two indisputable reasons for having the ceremony in Rome. The first is the world-wide interest in Newman both as a theologian and writer but also as a holy, humble and pastoral parish priest who looked after the sick and poor of his Oratory Parish in Edgbaston.

Secondly the fact that Newman is a Cardinal of the Holy Roman Church. When he was created a Cardinal by Pope Leo XIII in 1879 Newman wrote requesting permission to continue to live in Birmingham and continue his work as a parish priest rather than move to Rome as was the norm for cardinals at that time. The Pope granted permission and Cardinal Newman died in his room at the Oratory House in Edgbaston during the evening of August 11, 1890.

The intriguing question now is will Pope Benedict XVI make an exception and personally beatify, either in Rome or in England, the best-known 19th century English Churchman, Blessed John Henry Newman.

Source: Times Online

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