Thursday, August 14, 2008

Cardinal Newman


You've probably seen the news that in anticipation of a future beatification of John Henry Newman, plans are being drawn up to move his body from Rednall to a new resting place within the Birmingham Oratory. I very much hope the rumoured beatification will be confirmed soon - not just because a parishioner has offered to fly me to the ceremony in a private plane (!) - but also because it will give us a new impetus to read his writings once again. Newman one of the few great English theologians but sometimes appears to have a greater following abroad than on his native soil.

I've seen various redactions of his famous meditation on trust in God. Here's quite a short one published in Fr Vincent Ferrer Blehl's "A Newman Prayer Book" which I picked up recently at Littlemore:



God has created me to do Him some definite service; He has committed some work to me which He has not committed to another.
I have my mission - I may never know it in this life,
but I shall be told it in the next.
I am a link in a chain, a bond of connection between persons.
He has not created me for naught. I shall do good, I shall do His work;
I shall be a preacher of Truth in my own place, while not intending it, if I do but keep His commandments and serve Him in my calling.
Therefore, my God, I will put myself without reserve into your hands. What have I in heaven, and apart from you what do I want upon earth?
My flesh and my heart fail, but God is the God of my heart,
and my portion for ever.

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