John Henry Newman, the most seminal of modern Catholic theologians, is often called 'the Father of the Second Vatican Council.' the teachings of which he anticipated in so many ways, especially in his ecclesiology, with its emphasis on the role of the laity, but also in his theory of the development of doctrine, his ecumenism, and his concern for the renewal of Catholicism in the modern world.
“Considering the high gifts, and the strong claims of the Church of Rome and its dependencies on our admiration, reverence, love, and gratitude, how could we withstand it, as we do; how could we refrain from being melted into tenderness, and rushing into communion with it, but for the words of Truth itself, which bid us prefer it to the whole world? ‘He that loveth father or mother more than Me, is not worthy of Me.’ How could we learn to be severe, and execute judgment, but for the warning of Moses against even a divinely-gifted teacher who should preach new gods, and the anathema of St. Paul even against Angels and Apostles who should bring in a new doctrine?” Aeterna Press
I present for your Lordship’s kind acceptance and patronage the first work which I publish as a “Father of the. Oratory of St. Philip Neri. I have a sort of claim upon your permission to do so, as a token of my gratitude and affection toward your Lordship, since it is to you principally that I owe it, under God, that I am a client and subject, however unworthy, of so great a Saint. Aeterna Press
Even before the publication of his masterwork, John Henry Newman had been regarded as one of the most important religious thinkers on the 19th Century. His decision in 1845 to leave his Anglicanism behind and convert to the Roman Catholic faith was one that rocked the Victorian establishment at a time when virulent anti-Catholic feeling ran high. It was in response to one particularly vicious attack – by the Reverend Charles Kingsley – that Newman wrote his Apologia Pro Vita Sua. A humane and vivid account of the development of his ideas and his faith and a passionate defence of both, the book remains a landmark work of Victorian literature and autobiography and one that continues to resonate to this day.
STRANGE as it may seem, multitudes called Christians go through life with no effort to obtain a correct knowledge of themselves. They are contented with general and vague impressions concerning their real state; and, if they have more than this, it is merely such accidental information about themselves as the events of life force upon them. But exact systematic knowledge they have none, and do not aim at it. Aeterna Press
The following work was written in the early part of last year, for Messrs. Rivington’s “Theological Library;” but as it seemed, on its completion, little fitted for the objects with which that publication has been undertaken, it makes its appearance in an independent form. Some apology is due to the reader for the length of the introductory chapter, but it was intended as the opening of a more extensive undertaking. It may be added, to prevent mistake, that the theological works cited at the foot of the page, are referred to for the facts, rather than the opinions they contain; though some of them, as the “Defensio Fidei Nicenæ,” evince gifts, moral and intellectual, of so high a cast, as to render it a privilege to be allowed to sit at the feet of their authors, and to receive the words, which they have been, as it were, commissioned to deliver. Aeterna Press
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