About Newman

In 1832 Newman had a significant voyage to the Mediterranean, spending time in Malta, Greece, Corfu, Naples and Rome. It was during this journey, becalmed in the Straits of Bonifacio between Corsica and Sardinia, that he wrote “Lead Kindly Light”.

On October 9, 1845, the Italian Passionist, Blessed Dominic Barberi received Newman into the Catholic Church. Five later in 1850 the Ctholic hierarchy was re-established in England. This, however, precipitated an outbreak of “no-popery”, which Newman felt compelled to address. Many anti-catholic popular prejudices were inflamed, in particular by an ex-Dominican friar, Dr Giovanni Achilli who went about England with lurid tales of the abuses of Catholicism. Newman wrote trenchantly against Achilli, who in turn sued Newman for Libel.

Because of delays in gathering the necessary evidence, Newman was convicted and sentenced to pay £100. Collections were taken up by Catholics in the United States and elsewhere, which more than sufficed to defray the expenses of the trial and fortunately for us, from the excess Newman was able to finance this unique and beautiful church, which he established for the Catholic University of Ireland one hundred and fifty years ago in 1856.

Cardinal Newman was beatified by Pope Benedict XVI on Sunday 19th September 2010 in Birmingham and canonised by Pope Francis on Sunday 13th October 2019 in Rome.