Australian Oratorian hopes to witness Newman canonisation

Cardinal John Henry Newman by Sir John Everett Millais (WikiCommons)

When Pope Francis declares Cardinal John Henry Newman a saint in Rome later this year, there’s a good chance a priest from Brisbane will be there as a witness. Source: The Catholic Leader.

Cardinal Newman is one of the patrons of Australia’s first Oratory community – in Brisbane – and occupies a special place for the priests and brothers who make up the congregation.

“It is thanks to Cardinal Newman that the St Philip’s oratory came into the English-speaking world,” Brisbane Oratory in Formation moderator Fr Adrian Sharp said.

Founded in Rome in 1575 by St Philip Neri, Oratory communities have spread around the world, with more than 70 Oratories and 500 priests.

It was Cardinal Newman, regarded as one of the most influential figures from 19th-century Britain, who founded an Oratory community in Birmingham in 1849 – the first in the English-speaking world.

“Our Oratory is one of the English-speaking oratories which stem from Cardinal Newman’s Birmingham Oratory,” Fr Sharp said.

Cardinal Newman will be canonised in a ceremony in St Peter’s Square in Vatican City on October 13, almost 130 years after he died.

He will be the first English person born since the 17th century to be declared a saint by the Church.

“It’s great recognition of his towering intellect and the contribution he made to the Church in the 19th century. He really is a standout figure from that era,” Fr Sharp said.

“It’s nice to have that recognised and his own personal holiness, and the fact that he’s an Oratorian fills us Oratorians with joy.”

Brisbane Oratory in Formation was welcomed to Brisbane by Archbishop Mark Coleridge, and is based at Mary Immaculate Church, Annerley, in the Annerley Ekibin parish.


Sainthood step for Cardinal John Henry Newman fills Brisbane Oratory community with joy (The Catholic Leader)

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