Birmingham, England, Sep 19, 2010 / 04:51 am
In his homily during the beatification Mass, the Holy Father remembered the mark Blessed John Henry Cardinal Newman left on Christianity, particularly to education. Noting his greatness together with that of English saints, he highlighted the Blessed's role as a "pastor of souls."
Pope Benedict called "right and fitting" that, among England's traditional martyr saints, "the holiness of a confessor" should be recognized. Cardinal Newman, "while not called to shed his blood for the Lord, nevertheless bore eloquent witness to him in the course of a long life devoted to the priestly ministry, and especially to preaching, teaching, and writing," he said.
The Pope noted that the Blessed is "worthy to take his place" together with other British saints and scholars, among whom, he said, are the likes of Sts Bede, Hilda Aelred and Duns Scotus
"In Blessed John Henry, that tradition of gentle scholarship, deep human wisdom and profound love for the Lord has borne rich fruit, as a sign of the abiding presence of the Holy Spirit deep within the heart of God's people, bringing forth abundant gifts of holiness."