London, England, Sep 30, 2019 / 09:25 am
The leading English bishop said Sunday that Blessed John Henry Newman offers an important witness for the Catholic Church in England during difficult times, and is a patron for the call of every Catholic to "missionary discipleship."
"Cardinal Newman faced difficult times and circumstances. So do we. At this moment, there is much unease in our society. We seem to have lost a sense of shared hope and vision around which to gather. Our present-day culture offers no reason or encouragement to offer forgiveness to those who have offended. A harshness of speech and a quickness of condemnation seem to be everywhere. This is the society in which we are to give our witness, and for which we readily offer our prayer. Let us never lose heart in doing so!" said Cardinal Vincent Nichols in a Sept. 29 pastoral letter.
Nichols is the Bishop of Westminster, which encompasses much of the city of London. He is also head of the English bishops' conference, and the de facto leader of the English bishops.
Newman, an Englishman and former Anglican cleric who converted to Catholicism in 1845, is set to be canonized a saint by Pope Francis next month.