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‘Echoes from Home’: The Personalist Ground of Newman’s Ecclesiology. Affection as the Key to Newman’s Intellectual Discernment on the Issue of Church

Dr Robert C. Christie

Résumé

Newman’s majestic work, An Essay on the Development of Christian Doctrine (October, 1845), explicated a logical argument for the Roman communion as the rightful heir of the Apostolic church, culminating in an ecclesiastical odyssey that began almost thirty years earlier in his religious conversion of 1816. I suggest that in addition to the intellectual import of the Essay, at least of equal significance is the principle underlying Newman’s analysis, which is that intellectual discernment through affection is the ground of faith. For more than two decades, Newman’s journey traveled along these two parallel tracks—that of religious epistemology grounded in the affections, and that of ecclesiastical discernment—ultimately arriving ‘home’ in the Roman Catholic Church. The groundwork for the Essay was laid in Newman’s final University Sermon written almost two years earlier (February 2, 1843). Here we discover a major clue in a metaphor Newman used to describe his sense of dogma: ‘They are the echoes from our Home.’

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Introduction

1This essay traces John Henry Newman’s journey of more than two decades from the Church of England to the Roman Catholic communion, in search of a home for his heart. We follow him along the two parallel paths of discernment he developed in this search: one track of religious epistemology grounded in the affections, and another of intellectual discernment regarding the nature of the Church. Examining his major works as well as numerous sermons during this period from the early 1820’s until his conversion in 1845, as well as important interpersonal relationships in his life, we find that the affections of the heart, first experienced in his loving family life, were the grounds that inspired his spiritual search for the ecclesiastical counterpart. His long search concludes in his synthesis of mind and heart when he integrates his intellectual search for truth with the affectionate desires of his heart, hearing ‘echoes from Home’ (Oxford University Sermon XV, ‘The Theory of Developments in Religious Doctrine’, 1843). These resonances of revelation were calling him home to the Roman communion. His intellectual discernment of the locus of revelation in the Roman community ultimately complemented his deep affections, first impressed upon his heart in his loving home, resulting in his famous conversion of 1845. Newman thus provides us a template by which to assess the relationship of head and heart in the search for religious truth and spiritual fulfillment.

[I]

Home and Mr. Newman

2From a very early age, John Henry Newman’s thinking was conditioned by family love. It was in this milieu that the love of Christ was mediated to him through loving parents and siblings. Emphasizing Bible reading and the Church catechism, it was parental affection that caused young John Henry to embrace what they embraced, and ever after a trusted credible personal witness to truth was the major factor in both his personal and religious judgments.

  • 1 John Henry Newman, Letters and Diaries, vol. i,, ed. Ian Ker and Thomas Gornall, S.J., Oxford: Clar (...)

3A pivotal problem that occurred in Newman’s early development was the failure of his father’s bank, beginning a downward spiral for Mr. Newman that ended in his premature death just eight years later. In 1874, recounting those early days, Newman wrote: ‘He returned to London, and after a few years his anxieties brought him to an end. For his sake who loved and wearied himself for us all with such unrequited affection, I wish all this forgotten.’1

  • 2 Henry Tristram, Autobiographical Writings, New York, Sheed and Ward, Inc., 1957, 176, September 30, (...)

4Newman’s relationship with his father was especially influential. A major example includes a confrontation between them that occurred in 1821 caused by Newman’s increasing evangelicalism, about which Newman wrote that ‘a scene ensued more painful than any I have experienced.’ What he wrote the next day is telling: ‘My Father was reconciled to us today. . . . I think his forgiveness of us an example of very striking candour, forbearance, and generosity.’2

  • 3 Ibid., 179–80. Sunday. January 6, 1822: ‘After Church my Father began to speak to me as follows: «I (...)
  • 4 John Henry Newman, Parochial and Plain Sermons, San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 1997, VIII, 8, 1630– (...)

5Three months later, his father gave him a very severe admonition about his excessive evangelicalism. Again, Newman’s reflection is telling: ‘O God. . . Make me and keep me humble and teachable, modest and cautious.’3 Humility and teachableness would become major themes of important subsequent sermons.4

  • 5 H. Tristram. Autobiographical Writings, op. cit., 180. Jan. 11, 1822.

6Then just five days after his father’s severe admonition, Newman made a note in his journal that underscores the powerful influence of their relationship: ‘My Father said this morning I ought to make up my mind what I was to be. . . . So I chose; and determined on the Church. Thank God, this is what I have prayed for.’5

  • 6 R. D. Middleton. Newman at Oxford, New York: Oxford University Press, 1950, 4.
  • 7 Maisie Ward, Young Mr. Newman, New York: Sheed & Ward, 1948, 105.
  • 8 J.H. Newman, Letters and Diaries, op. cit., vol. i, 93.

7Newman’s sister Harriett later described their early years as ‘a very happy family circle.’6 But Maisie Ward states that ‘1824 was the last year in which the family was whole and complete.’7 Newman’s diary states the facts:8

Wednesday 29 September

  • 9 H. Tristram, Autobiographical Writings, op. cit., 202–3. Sunday, Oct. 3: ‘On Thursday he looked bea (...)

Aunt came to town Dr Clutterbuck came for the last time—at 1/4 to ten at night my dear Father ceased to breathe—Charles, Francis and myself slept in the parlour in our clothes. My Father died.
That dread event has happened. Is it possible! O my Father, where art thou?9

8But it required the aesthetic distance of more than twenty years before Newman could articulate the effects of his dear father’s death through the hero of his novel Loss and Gain:

  • 10 John Henry Newman, Loss and Gain, London: Longmans, Green, and Co., 1911, 157–9. The impact on this (...)

When Charles got to his room he saw a letter from home lying on his table; and, to his alarm, it had a deep, black edge. He tore it open. Alas, it announced the sudden death of his dear father!. . .it was a grief not to be put into words. . . .
it was the first great grief poor Charles had ever had, and he felt it to be real. . . .
He then understood the difference between what was real and what was not. All the doubts, inquiries, surmises, views, which had of late haunted him on theological subjects, seemed like so many shams. . . .
He felt now where the heart and his life lay. His birth, his parentage, his education, his home, were great realities; to these his being was united; out of these he grew. . ..
What is called the pursuit of truth seemed an idle dream. He had great tangible duties to his father’s memory, to his mother and sisters, to his position; he felt sick of all theories as if they had taken him in. . . .
He could not do better than imitate the life and death of his beloved father. . . .
A leaf had been turned over in his life. Youngest sons in a family, like monks in a convent, may remain children till they have reached middle age; but the elder, should their dear father die prematurely, are suddenly ripened into manhood when they are almost boys. Charles had left Oxford a clever informed youth; he returned a man.10

9This deep loss, however, would generate gain, with particular effect on his understanding of the influence of affection as well as his ecclesiology, as we find in his sermons of 1825.

[II]

Fourteen Sermons of 1825:

10The Beginning of Newman’s Two-Track Method of Discernment:

  • 11 1. The Six Sermons on Faith: Toward an Interpersonalist Theology. From February to March, 1825. Thi (...)

Religious Epistemology and Ecclesiology, or Faith and Church11

Eleven Sermons on Faith, Relationship, and Affectivity, and Three on the Church

11These fourteen sermons mark the beginning of the development of a characteristic two-track method Newman employed for coordinating his developing theological discernment about religious epistemology and faith, on the one hand, and ecclesiology on the other. Most importantly, interpersonalism and home were recurring themes.

12It is my thesis that Newman came to see both faith and doctrine as grounded in the nature of the mind shaped by the heart, with doctrine, through the church, an expression of the interpersonal experience of trust and faith. For Newman, faith as the ground of doctrine began at home.

  • 12 T. Sheridan, op. cit., 92.
  • 13 HOME THEME ONE. This is the first of eleven major incidences enumerated in this paper of the ‘home’ (...)
  • 14 T. Sheridan, op. cit., 92.
  • 15 Ibid., 96. ‘Necessary Connection of Faith and Works.’ The fifth sermon in the series. ‘Real faith c (...)

13Eleven of these sermons are on faith, relationship, and affectivity, his religious epistemology track. Newman defined faith as ‘knowledge through a medium’ and ‘more or less connected with the heart and affections,’12 and which ‘consists in being impressed with the reality of unseen things from confidence in the person who tells us of them,’ undoubtedly an effect of parental influence and introducing the life-long theme of the trusted witness.13 Moreover, his is a ‘faith which worketh by love,’14 implying its interpersonal nature.15

  • 16 Ibid., 102. April 10, 1825, ‘Personal Interest in Christ,’ and May 8, 1825 and entitled ‘John’s and (...)

14Regarding baptism,16 he connects the substituted faith of the sponsor, a Christ-surrogate, for that of the child’s, as the interpersonalist ground that creates a relationship between God and infant.

  • 17 Ibid., 41–2.
  • 18 Newman, Parochial and Plain Sermons, ‘Secret Faults,’ vol. i, 4: 31–40. Preached June 12, 1825. ‘Se (...)

15Another sermon describes the affective ground of religious knowledge, attributing to the heart the controlling role in grasping the truth of revelation.17 ‘God speaks to us primarily in our hearts,’18 he wrote.

  • 19 Newman, Parochial and Plain Sermons, ‘Inward Witness to the Truth of the Gospel,’ vol. viii, 8: 163 (...)

16And in another,19 he reiterates the importance of the credibility of the teacher (read ‘witness’):

  • 20 Ibid., 111.

How do you know that the Bible is true? You are told so in Church; your parents believed it..those whom we love best and reverence most believe it..Do we not receive what they tell us in other matters, though we cannot prove the truth of their information?20

  • 21 HOME THEME TWO.

17For Newman, the trusted teacher is the loving parent who teaches from the heart.21 Trust, faith, love, and personal witness are inseparably linked.

  • 22 T. Sheridan, op. cit., 113–117. The three church sermons were preached on November 20, November 27, (...)

18A final implication is that acceptance of authority is essentially a matter of faith and trust, which leads to an examination of his three sermons on his second track, that of ecclesiology.22

  • 23 Joseph Butler, The Analogy of Religion Natural and Revealed, to the Constitution and Course of Natu (...)

19But by 1825, his evangelical thinking was also altered by two other events: his experience as curate of St. Clement’s parish, and his reading of Joseph Butler’s Analogy of Religion Natural and Revealed, to the Constitution and Course of Nature,23 with particular noting of its interpersonal significance. This led him to connect previous themes to a new understanding of the Church in these sermons.

  • 24 T. Sheridan, op. cit., ‘Our admittance into the church our title to the Holy Spirit.’ 113.

20The first sermon’s major point is the intersection of covenant, community, and church. The church is the primary locus of our communal experience with God: ‘How do we become entitled to the gift of Christ’s Spirit? We answer, by belonging to the body of His church—and we belong to His church by being baptized into it.’24 Linking communal membership with baptism, Newman achieves systematic continuity with his previous sermons while asserting the continued primacy of interpersonal relations.

  • 25 Ibid., 114–5. ‘On the Communion of Saints.’

21The second sermon underscores this communal, interpersonalist theme,25

  • 26 Ibid., 115.

Yet we must not consider the Holy Spirit as uniting us only to Him. The same Divine Agent also unites us to one another. . .. if we walk in the light as He is in the light we also have fellowship with one another. This is called the communion of saints.26

  • 27 Id. ‘The Use of the Visible Church.’
  • 28 Newman, Letters and Diaries, op. cit., vol. i, 238. We learn from his diary that on Saturday, June (...)

22The third sermon is on the visible church27 as the ordinary means of grasping revelation, indicating the influence of Butler’s Analogy.28 All three sermons show the effect of Butler’s principle of sacramentality in addition to its catholic and communal nature.

23From these fourteen sermons of 1825, we find that Newman’s theology reached a new integration in his conception of a communal, sacramental Church grounded in the interpersonal experience of a loving, affective faith.

[III]

MARY

  • 29 M. Ward, Young Mr. Newman, op. cit., 149–151.
  • 30 John Henry Newman, Verses on Various Occasions, London: Longmans, Green, and Co., 1910, 28.

24Newman left the curacy of St. Clement’s in early 1826 upon being offered the post of Tutor of Oriel College, Oxford. There Newman thrived in the intellectually comfortable climate at Oxford, but home burst in soon again. In early 1828, his younger sister Mary died very suddenly.29 Her gentle, sacramental nature was such a loss to Newman that it pitched him into a depression for about a year, during which time he exchanged some twenty letters with his mother, sisters, and friends grieving over Mary’s loss, and he composed several poems expressing his deep sorrow.30

25Meriol Trevor provides an insightful interpretation of the influence of Mary’s death on Newman:

  • 31 Meriol Trevor, The Pillar of the Cloud, New York: Doubleday, 1962, 75.

But how could Mary’s death or a nervous collapse [which he suffered the previous November] affect this intellectual drift? The loss of Mary revived all Newman’s sense of the overpowering reality of the unseen world [and]. . .a sense of the reality of the supernatural world so vivid as to make the world of nature seem veil; such a spirit and imagination could never fit itself into the world of common-sense morality and intellectual abstraction inhabited by Whately and his friends of the liberal school. Mary’s going out of his world strengthened Newman’s sense of exile in it, which success had been undermining, [and her death] did for him what falling in love does for some people—opened his heart to a more sensitive sympathy with others. . . .[Thus] the pain can be fruitful.31

26This is further evidence of the primacy of family relations to Newman.
Shortly after this experience, Newman wrote a series of sermons on the Liturgy as a caution against a call for changes in Anglican worship. Delivered in early 1830, they indicate an early synthesis of his tracks of faith and church.

[IV]

  • 32 Placid Murray, OSB, ed., John Henry Newman: Sermons 1824—1834, Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1991, 55–11 (...)

A Preliminary Synthesis of the Tracks of Faith and Church
The Liturgy Sermon Series, January 31—April 4, 183032

  • 33 HOME THEME THREE.
  • 34 Newman, Letters and Diaries, op. cit., vol. ii: 191. Newman defines the liturgy as communal and rel (...)
  • 35 P. Murray, Sermons, 1824—43, op. cit., vol. i, 88–9. All through the Liturgy. . .the Church speaks (...)
  • 36 Ibid., 71.

27In early 1830 Newman wrote an important series of sermons on the liturgy. Here he developed the major theme that Church, doctrine, and liturgy are inseparably linked with relationships, faith, and love. He begins by connecting liturgy with his childhood experiences: ‘The influence she (the Church) exerts in the hearts of her people is chiefly by. . .attachment to those prayers. . . heard from childhood . . . 33Should we not dread disturbing this feeling?’34 He holds that liturgy both teaches doctrine and forms character, especially by promoting charity and love.35 Doctrines, such as the Trinity, are the intellectual understanding of relationships: ‘Liturgy,’ he says, ‘is. . . a record of the doctrines of the gospel. . . God’s will and our relations to Him.’36

  • 37 HOME THEME FOUR.
  • 38 P. Murray, Sermons, 1824—43, op. cit., 93.

28Newman’s major metaphor is telling: ‘Who does not feel his heart stir within him at the thought of attaining to that beloved home,37 where our Lord is gone before us?’38 For Newman, home is the seat of the heart, referring to this home as ‘glimpses of heaven.’

29But two other influences spurred Newman’s intellectual development at this time: the resumption of his correspondence with his brother Charles about the nature of religious faith, and his analysis of the Arian heresy of the fourth century, both of which are linked to affectivity.

[V]

The Arians of The Fourth Century

  • 39 John Henry Newman, The Arians of the Fourth Century, London: Basil, Montague, Pickering, 1876.

A Study of Temper: Affectivity as the Ground of Intellect and Conversion39

30Newman’s work on Arians, his major work of this period and perhaps his most seminal document, extended from June of 1831 until July of 1832, filling almost 400 pages. From an understanding of revelation drawn from Scripture, Newman unearthed a line of continuity from the early church to the Alexandrian, distinguished most importantly by a personalist method which disclosed the truth of revelation by means of a disposition, or temper (read affectivity), which facilitated that process. Briefly summarized, Newman’s approach illustrates his two-track method: it was analogical, economical, and aesthetic, all of which are essentially intellectual, and the accompanying temper is an element of the affectivity that engages the desires of the heart in its search for fulfillment. These dimensions are reciprocally influential. The heart motivates and drives the mind, but the mind, in its methods of ascertaining the truth through the moral decisions affirmed by the intellect, also affects the heart. Thus, moral judgments and intellectual affirmations exist in a necessary reciprocal relationship with affectivity. They can promote, or retard and damage, each other, but are inseparable. Such is the fruit of Newman’s analysis. Thus, Arians is seminal in that it contains the roots of Newman’s two-track developing method.

  • 40 J. H. Newman, Letters and Diaries, op. cit., vol. ii, 131, 142, 165–8, 171, 173, 206.
  • 41 Ibid., 244.
  • 42 Ibid., 228.
  • 43 Ibid., 266–81.
  • 44 Ibid., 270–8.
  • 45 Ibid., 281.

31At this time Newman was again involved in a family matter that echoes his concern with temper in Arians. In early 1829 he resumed a correspondence with his brother Charles on questions that he was exploring in Arians, and his diary records no less than eight exchanges of letters till the end of the year, picking up again in the spring of 1830.40 Charles was insistent on reopening the previous discussion which culminated in Newman’s analysis of an affective predisposition against religion as the faulty ground of Charles’s position. At first Newman refused to reopen the discussion,41 but was once again moved by his mother’s anxiety over Charles.42 Shortly thereafter he wrote to Charles one of the lengthiest letters of his life, some 24 pages in all.43 Newman revisited the old theme, and described it very much as we find it in Arians; judgments against doctrine are caused by intellectual, methodological error grounded in affective distemper.44 Newman concluded the letter with a tenet which serves as an apt introduction to his Arians study: ‘it is a fundamental doctrine of Scriptures that the mind cannot arrive at religious truth without a revelation—I think it never can.’45 Thus, access to religious truth requires going beyond the purely logical into the realm of the personal, in trust that one is encountering a truth.

32As further evidence of the primacy of affectivity in Newman’s thinking and its connection to relationships of family and friends, we now examine a key sermon which he preached during his composition of Arians, dedicated to the theme of affectivity. Given the time of its composition, we can presume it both influenced, and was influenced by, his thinking in Arians and his concern for his brother and mother.

[VI]

  • 46 J. H. Newman, Parochial and Plain Sermons, op. cit., vol. ii, 5. 259–64. Preached December 27, 1831

‘The Love of Relations and Friends’46

  • 47 Id.

33Almost midway through the writing of Arians, Newman preached this sermon, which expounds the nature of Christian love, the temper at the heart of his Arians analysis. Here Newman traced the ground of Christian love to the affections, a theme of his liturgy sermons, and then grounded the affections in the selfless relationships of home life. These two aspects substantiate dual themes of the thesis, first, that for Newman affectivity grounds intellectual development, which ultimately leads us to feel and know our relationship to God, which is perceived in the vision of the human relationships of home and friends. As we know, these were the primary personal influences in Newman’s life. In speaking of love, Newman writes that ‘therefore, [it] must begin by exercising itself on our friends around us. . . . By trying to love our relations and friends, by submitting to their wishes, though contrary to our own, by bearing with their infirmities, by overcoming their occasional waywardness by kindness.’47

  • 48 Id.
  • 49 Ibid., 258–60.
  • 50 Ibid., 258.

34This is the method by which ‘we form in our hearts that root of charity.’48 Newman expressly criticized ‘universal’ or abstract love when it is conceived apart from, and at the expense of, family and friends: ‘The love of our fellow Christians and of the world at large . . . is the love of kindred and friends in a fresh shape . . . A man, who would fain begin by a general love of all men. . . does harm. . . sacrificing individual to general good. . . . Abstract notions. . . often forget to take any thought of those who are associated with themselves.’49 This again reiterates that for Newman affectivity grounds both the intellect and morality, supporting a major assertion of my thesis: ‘It has been the plan of Divine Providence to ground what is good and true in religion and morals, on the basis of our good natural feelings. . . . Consider how many other virtues are grafted upon natural feelings.’50

35In the final major theme of the sermon, and again supporting one of my major assertions, Newman held that this affectivity is first experienced and learned in the home, through parents:

  • 51 Id.

What we are towards our earthly friends in the instincts and wishes of our infancy, such are we to become towards God and man in the extended field of our duties as accountable beings. To honour our parents is the first step towards honouring God.51

  • 52 HOME THEME FIVE. Id.

36Newman’s personal home life experiences of interpersonal love were the affective grounds of all the theology which followed, assuming the always-present effect of grace doing its work in the dynamic process. Immediately following this statement Newman made what is a most notable analogy between Church and home, one which is recurrent throughout his work: ‘Hence our Lord says, we must become as little children, if we would be saved; we must become in his Church, as men, what we were once in the small circle of our youthful home.’52 In the affections associated with home life Newman finds the ground for a wider, social love, particularly in the state of marriage, reflecting once again his home life experience:

  • 53 Ibid., 261.

I have hitherto considered the cultivation of domestic affections as the source of more extended Christian love. . . . I cannot fancy any state of life more favourable for the exercise of high Christian principle, and the matured and refined Christian spirit . . . than that of persons who differ being obliged to live together, and mutually to accommodate to each other. . . . This is one among the many providential benefits. . . of the Holy Estate of Matrimony; which not only calls out the tenderest and gentlest feelings of our nature, but . . . must be in various ways more or less a state of self-denial.53

  • 54 Ibid., 262.

37These human relations promote participation in, and knowledge of, the divine: ‘But what is it that can bind two friends together in intimate converse for a couple of years, but the participation in something that is Unchangeable and Essentially Good, and what is this but religion? Religious tastes alone are unalterable.’54

38This sermon, his correspondence with his brother Charles, and Arians itself form the theological aspect of this period, evidencing his heightened intellectual grasp of domestically-engendered affectivity.

39In June of 1831, Newman left his post as Tutor of Oriel after a lengthy dispute with the provost over the nature of the position. He was subsequently invited to accompany his friend Richard Hurrell Froude on a trip to the Mediterranean and Rome in particular, a journey which provides evidence of further development of his two-track work.

[VII]

  • 55 John Henry Newman, Collected Poems, Sevenoaks: Fisher Press, 1992.

Lead, Kindly Light55

40With his draft of Arians completed, the Mediterranean trip commenced in December, 1832, and Newman returned in June, 1833. Towards the end of the journey Newman became so extremely ill while visiting Sicily that he feared he might very well die. However, he recovered and headed for home. This shattering occurrence, coupled with very perplexing experiences of Rome and Catholicism, was as much spiritual as physical. He had left Oxford with deep concerns about the state of the Church of England. One of the results of the voyage and his Roman experiences was the conviction that he must pursue reform within the Anglican community, which gave birth to the Tractarian movement.

41This was also his first trip abroad, and many of his experiences coalesced in his poetic compositions, particularly on his voyage back to England. In Lead, Kindly Light, the imagery of home and loved ones, obviously his dear father and sister, united with metaphors of heaven as his journey wound its way home both physically and spiritually:

  • 56 HOME THEME SIX.

Lead, Kindly Light, amid the encircling gloom
Lead Thou me on!
The night is dark, and I am far from home56
And with the morn those angel faces smile
Which I have loved long since, and lost awhile.
At Sea
June 16, 1833

42During one of the most trying periods of his life, he poignantly intertwined God and heaven, home and loved ones.

[VIII]A.

The Tractarian Period: Church and Relationship

Three Sermons on the Church and One on Religious Epistemology

  • 57 John Henry Newman, Apologia Pro Vita Sua, Ian Ker, ed., New York: Penguin, 1995, 68. While Newman w (...)
  • 58 HOME THEME SEVEN.
  • 59 Newman, Apologia Pro Vita Sua, op. cit., 68, 61.

43Shortly after Newman returned home, the Tractarian movement began, opposing state encroachment on the Church and the decline of the importance of Anglican doctrine in the Universities.57 Newman defined the movement by the analogy of dogma to parental relationship:58 ‘The main principle of the movement is as dear to me now as it ever was. . . dogma has been the fundamental principle of my religion. . . . As well can there be filial love without the fact of a father, as devotion without the fact of a Supreme Being.’59

  • 60 J.H. Newman, Letters and Diaries, op. cit., vol. iv, ed. Ian Ker and Thomas Gornall, Oxford: Claren (...)
  • 61 Ibid., 111–112. ‘Now their great advantage lies in this; that they all speak the same thing. There (...)
  • 62 Ibid., 68. Also, Louis Bouyer, Newman, New York: Meridian Books, 1960, 162. The problem with the An (...)
  • 63 John Henry Newman, The Via Media of the Anglican Church, vol. ii, London: Longmans, Green and Co., (...)
  • 64 John Walsh, Colin Hayden, and Stephen Taylor, eds., The Church of England, c. 1689—1833, Cambridge: (...)

44Newman wrote three early tracts on ecclesiology and one on religious epistemology. In late 1833, he defined his vision of the visible Church as having three traits: community, gospel and ‘governance.’60 But in stark contrast to the Roman community,61 he wrote about the Anglican system that ‘Our neglect of discipline is undeniable,’62 a problem he addressed in two ecclesiological tracts63 in mid-1834 on the moderating Anglican image of the Via Media.64

  • 65 Ibid. On the development of doctrine:
  • 66 Ibid. On The Apostolic Church criterion:
  • 67 Ibid. On the nature and limits of the Articles:
  • 68 Ibid. Function and effect of the Liturgy:
  • 69 Ibid. The need for anti-liberal reform: the subjectivity versus the objectivity of faith:

45Among the primary themes of these tracts were the rudimentary recognition of a principle of doctrinal development,65 Apostolic continuity66 of the Articles67 despite their incompleteness, the Liturgy as the repository of doctrine,68 and the need for Church reform both against rationalism69 and for systematization.

46Then in early 1836 he composed two other documents, one on each of his tracks of ecclesiology and religious epistemology.

Continuing Development of The Ecclesiology Track: Tract 71

  • 70 Ibid., 93–141. Tract 71, entitled ‘On the Mode of Conducting the Controversy with Rome.’ January 1, (...)
  • 71 Ibid. Further, ‘(O)ur Articles, so far as distinct from the ancient creeds. . . . neither are nor p (...)
  • 72 Ibid. ‘There is. . .a want of correspondence between the appearance presented by the Roman theology (...)
  • 73 Ibid. ‘The objections. . .against the English Church. . .are.dissimilar from those which lie agains (...)
  • 74 Ibid.How is it that the particular Christian body to which I belong happens to be the right one?. (...)

47Tract 71 on ecclesiology asserts the legitimacy of the Church of England over that of Rome.70 The most important point is Newman’s rejection of Rome’s principle of authority,71 itself grounded in a principle of doctrinal development.72 But most important is the basis of Newman’s argument: his uncritical faith in the Anglican divines.73 This foundation of his Via Media theory, this witness, would ultimately prove to lack credibility. We find, however, the emergence of another ultimately credible witness linked to Apostolic continuity. Twice Newman referred to the principle of a united Church, ironically the ultimate vision which will ‘pulverize’ his own theory of the Via Media in just three short years.74 Thus, the tracks of church and faith were slowly beginning to merge.

  • 75 John Henry Newman, Essays Critical and Historical, vol. i., London: Longmans, Green, and Co., 1895: (...)
  • 76 Ibid., 31. Newman recognizes three criteria of Rationalism which render it ‘a certain abuse of Reas (...)

48The following month, his religious epistemology tract75 made the case against Rationalism through an analysis of faith: ‘Faith is, in its very nature, the acceptance of what our reason cannot reach, simply and absolutely upon testimony.’76 But who is this credible witness? He sought to give this question an ecclesiological answer the following year, 1837, in the Prophetical Office.

[VIII]B.

  • 77 John Henry Newman, The Via Media, vol. i, London: Longmans, Green, and Co., 1911.

Lectures on the Prophetical Office of the Church
viewed relatively to Romanism and Popular Protestantism77

  • 78 Ibid., 7. Protestantism is rejected outright since ‘It does not attempt this at all; it abandons th (...)
  • 79 Ibid. ‘Since the Church is not now one, it is not infallible; since the one has become in one sense (...)

49Here Newman sought ‘to furnish an approximation in one or two points towards a correct theory of the duties and office of the Church Catholic.’78 Like the previous tracts, the issue soon centered on the doctrine of infallibility, rejected on the ground that only the united Church can so speak, a state that has not existed since probably the fourth century.79

  • 80 Ibid., 249, 250. ‘A vast system. . .consisting of a certain body of Truth, pervading the Church lik (...)
  • 81 Ibid., 262–263.
  • 82 Ibid., 142. ‘Truth has a force which error cannot counterfeit.’
  • 83 Ibid., 4. Although order is lacking: ‘We have a vast inheritance, but no inventory of our treasures (...)

50While focusing on the Church’s apostolic-based teaching mission,80 he asserts that the Church of England IS the Catholic Church, through the nature of her sacraments, ordinations, and liturgies, whereas Rome is defective because of its numerous non-apostolic doctrines and devotional practices.81 But the ecclesiastical issue becomes ultimately one of faith, Newman’s ‘other track.’82 Here Newman places his faith and trust in the witness of the Anglican divines,83 of which he will write forty years later in the Preface to the Third Edition of the Prophetical Office:

  • 84 Ibid., xxxiii.

He admitted far too easily what those divines said about the early Fathers, and what they said about Rome. . . . In the years which followed the publication of the Volume, in proportion as he read the Fathers more carefully, and used his own eyes in determining the faith and worship of their times, his confidence in the Anglican divines was more and more shaken, and at last it went altogether.84

  • 85 Ibid., 251–252. ‘For a time the whole church agreed together in. . .the Tradition; but in course of (...)
  • 86 Ibid., 283. ‘They do not know how they see.’
  • 87 Ibid., 257.
  • 88 HOME THEME EIGHT. Ibid., 257–258.

51Newman accused both Protestants and Rome of this failure of submissive obedience to the truth transmitted by Antiquity, but most importantly, this failure was grounded in a loss of affectivity: ‘For a time the whole church agreed together in. . . the Tradition; but in course of years, love waxing cold and schisms abounding. . . branches developed portions of it for themselves. . .(and) they are the ruins and perversions of Primitive Tradition.’85 Ultimately, he concluded, truth is discovered more through the intuition of faith and obedience than reason.86 His establishment of an affective base to religious knowledge is consistent with my thesis, as is this definition of faith given near the end of the Prophetical Office, ‘submission of the reason and will towards God.’87 Lastly, underscoring my point is the critical familial metaphor he employed so characteristic of his own experience; this faith is like the reliance of the child on the mother.88 Submission and faith, then, are grounded in the affection of love, pulling the tracks of church and faith ever nearer. This is seen in the Office’s many references to the principle of the universal Church and to an implicit principle of development of doctrine, the principles from which he eventually will refashion his Church image.

52The following year, continuing this synthesis, he published his major document on his other track of religious epistemology, The Lectures on Justification.

[VIII]C.

  • 89 John Henry Newman, Lectures on the Doctrine of Justification, 3rd edition, London: Rivingtons, 1890

The Lectures on Justification89

53Newman’s theme here is the compatibility of Church doctrine with the personal experience of justifying faith. He saw the solution to the Church problem as grounded in justification, or how one is saved.

  • 90 Ibid. The Protestant position of justification by faith alone is rejected as ‘erroneous,’ and the R (...)
  • 91 Ibid., 32. ‘It is affirmed that, since man fell, he has lain under one great need. . . . (H)e needs (...)
  • 92 Ibid., 42.

54He rejected both the Protestant and Roman views on justification.90 Conversion is an essential issue.91 ‘Righteousness, then,’ he wrote, ‘is a Law in the Heart,’92 effected by grace.

  • 93 Ibid., 145. ‘In Him we live, and move and have our being.’ But further, that ‘Divine Presence vouch (...)
  • 94 Ibid., 149.
  • 95 Ibid., 178. ‘Further, it is our cooperation which is the condition of the continued Presence within (...)

55Newman identifies justification with the reception of the Divine Presence within us.93 Thus, justification is interpersonal encounter with God, from which spring faith, obedience,94 and sanctification through conversion.95

  • 96 Ibid., 253.
  • 97 Id.
  • 98 Ibid., 257.
  • 99 Ibid., 267.
  • 100 Ibid., 266. Synthesizing Paul and James, faith also involves a dimension of the will, as it include (...)

56Newman draws out the nature of justifying faith as a perception of heavenly things through an instinctive trust in the divine truth of revelation.96 However, faith is not always religious. It is human before it is God-centered.97 But faith has the requirement of a ‘softened heart:’ ‘Something more than trust is involved in justifying faith,’ he says; ‘in other words, it is the trust of a renewed or loving heart.’98 Through the Indwelling Spirit and obedience, knowledge of the supernatural is attained.99 He concludes, ‘So love is the modeling and harmonizing principle on which justifying faith depends, and in which it exists and acts.’100

57This introduces perhaps the best concluding summary of the Lectures:

  • 101 Ibid., 302–3. ‘It is faith developed. . .as an image . . . the beginning of that which is eternal, (...)

Such is faith, springing up out of. . . love.existing indeed in feelings but passing on into acts. . .arising from Faith seeing the invisible world, and Love choosing it.101

  • 102 Ibid., ix. ‘Unless the Author held in substance in 1874 what he published in 1838, he would not at (...)

58The Lectures offers a relevant contrast with the Prophetical Office, indicative of Newman’s ‘double track.’102 Notably, there existed an accuracy in Newman’s insights regarding faith and religious epistemology which was yet to be attained in his ecclesiastical theory.

59Newman returned to the University pulpit in early 1839 to deliver three sermons on faith, developing further his insights of the Lectures. His uncritical faith in the Anglican divines, which resulted in an inaccurate ecclesiastical image, was now countered by a deeper insight into the nature of faith, causing a conflict between his two tracks that required a resolution. Toward that end, his three University Sermons of 1839 were attempts to clarify his thinking on religious epistemology.

[IX]

The Oxford University Sermons of 1839: Numbers X, XI, and XII

  • 103 John Henry Newman, Fifteen Sermons, op. cit., 176–201. Preached January 6, 1839.
  • 104 Ibid., 182–185.
  • 105 Ibid., 176.
  • 106 HOME THEME NINE. Ibid., 177.
  • 107 Ibid., 183.
  • 108 Ibid., 184. ‘Reason may be the judge, without being the origin, of faith.’
  • 109 Ibid., 180.

60University Sermons X, XI, and XII demonstrate the influence of the Lectures. The first, entitled ‘Faith and Reason, Contrasted as Habits of Mind,’103 generally describes faith as an original principle, independent of reason,104 and the first fruit of grace.105 It resides in the heart, which Newman called the home of grace.106 Reason critiques faith, but does not create it,107 although they have an important reciprocal relationship:108 Faith ‘simply accepts testimony,’109 again the key interpersonal dynamic.

  • 110 Ibid., 202–21. Jan. 13, 1839. Avery Dulles states that Newman ‘approach(es) the question (of faith) (...)
  • 111 Ibid., 214.

61The second sermon, entitled ‘The Nature of Faith in Relation to Reason,’110 affirms the affective ground of faith, since ‘testimony is the only method. . . by which the next world can be revealed to us.’111 In a comprehensive analysis of faith, Newman contends that affectivity, or love, grounds not only faith but also knowledge, and since faith is also an act of reason, affectivity also grounds reason.

  • 112 Ibid., 222–50. May 21, 1839.
  • 113 Ibid., 234.

62In the third sermon entitled ‘Love, the Safeguard of Faith Against Superstition,’112 Newman takes his exploration of faith a step further. Acknowledging that faith requires a criterion or ‘safeguard’ to prevent irrational abuses, Newman attributes this function to affectivity: ‘The safeguard of faith is a right state of heart. This it is that gives it birth; it also disciplines it. . . . It is Love which forms it out of the rude chaos, into an image of Christ;. . . or, in scholastic language, justifying Faith, [whether in pagan, Jew, or Christian,] is fides formata charitate.’113

  • 114 HOME THEME TEN. Ibid., 236.
  • 115 Ibid., 242. ‘Its attempts at approaching and pleasing Him are acceptable or not, according as they (...)

63Most importantly, Newman employs a familial metaphor: the child who trusts his or her parents not because of proofs but rather ‘from the instinct of affection. . . . We believe because we love.114 ‘Faith leads the mind to communion with the invisible God.’115

  • 116 J.H Newman, Apologia Pro Vita Sua, op. cit., 111.

64Newman himself confirmed the dual focus and tension of his ‘two tracks’ during this period: ‘(A)t the end of 1835 or beginning of 1836, I had the whole state of the question before me, on which, to my mind, the decision between the Churches depended. . . . (I)n my view the controversy. . . . turned upon the Faith and the Church.’116 The ultimate result of this period was his aesthetic vision of the Via Media, an image grounded in an uncritical faith, supplemented by his long-standing affective aversion to Rome. This would soon clash with a more comprehensive image from Antiquity that will shatter Newman’s ecclesiastical vision.

[X]

The Securus Judicat Orbis Terrarum Imagery

  • 117 J.H. Newman, Letters and Diaries, op. cit., vol. vii, ed. Gerard Tracey, Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1 (...)

65In July, 1839, Newman began investigating Antiquity again. The schisms of the fifth century began to look like those of the sixteenth and nineteenth centuries, and for the first time he thought that Anglicanism may very well not be tenable.117 Newman began to see an image of the old Church within the new. Then a new image burst in upon him in September when a friend pointed out Nicholas Wiseman’s article asserting that the Anglican communion was schismatic because it was in violation of an ecclesiastical principle from Antiquity referenced by Augustine, securus judicat orbis terrarum, which Newman translated as ‘The universal Church is in its judgments secure of truth.’ Newman had previously read the article but overlooked the importance of the phrase, about which he wrote:

  • 118 J.H. Newman, Apologia Pro Vita Sua, op. cit., 115–6. The axiom is found in Augustine, Contra Episto (...)

What a light was thereby thrown upon every controversy in the Church!. . . (T)he deliberate judgment, in which the whole Church at length rests and acquiesces, is an infallible prescription and a final sentence against such portions of it as protest and secede. . . (T)he words of St. Augustine struck me with a power which I had never felt from any words before. . . (B)y those great words. . . the theory of the Via Media was absolutely pulverized.118

  • 119 J.H. Newman, Letters and Diaries, op. cit., vol. vii, 180.

66Newman stated that to settle the issue it would ultimately require, in addition to long study, ‘the sanction of one or two persons whom I most looked up to and trusted.’119 I note here Newman’s need, beyond intellectual analysis, for credible testimony from a trusted other. This personal witness would soon appear.

67But prior to that encounter, Newman wrote three major documents, University Sermons XIII and XIV, both developing his track of religious epistemology, and Tract 90, furthering his work on the ecclesiological track.

[XI]

  • 120 J.H. Newman, Fifteen Sermons, op. cit., ‘Implicit and Explicit Reason,’ 251–277. Preached June 29, (...)

Oxford University Sermon XIII: Implicit and Explicit Reason120

  • 121 Avery Dulles perceived these qualities in Newman’s own conversion: ‘His conversion was therefore no (...)
  • 122 J.H. Newman, Fifteen Sermons, op. cit., 267.

68University Sermon XIII made a critical epistemological advance. Doctrine is a product of the human mind, so to understand the assent of the human mind, which is incremental and thus developmental, is to understand the nature of doctrine.121 Relating doctrine to faith, he states that the reasonings of faith are latent and implicit, like a painting to its conception.122

  • 123 Ibid., 277.
  • 124 Ibid., 275.

69Likewise, beliefs, essentially implicit and complete in themselves,123 become explicit in doctrine, which are ‘symbols of the real grounds.’124 The apparent inconsistency of doctrinal statements is resolved when the inherent principle of development is understood, both as inherent in man’s nature and in doctrine as a product of that nature.

[XII]

  • 125 J.H. Newman, Fifteen Sermons, op. cit., 278–311. Preached June 1, 1841.

Oxford University Sermon XIV125

70University Sermon XIV on ‘Wisdom, as Contrasted with Faith and Bigotry,’ further developed Newman’s thought on the religious epistemology track.

  • 126 Ibid., 293.
  • 127 Ibid., 279.
  • 128 Ibid., 287.

71While wisdom is ‘the accurate vision and comprehension of the whole work of God,’126 Newman again notes that this knowledge begins with the grace of faith.127 Following Butler, Newman sees how this knowledge can ‘imply a connected view of the old within the new: an insight into the bearing and influence of each part upon every other; without which there is no whole, and would be no centre.’128

72The tracks of ecclesiology and epistemology were drawing ever nearer. But Newman’s ecclesiastical dilemma required a complementary solution, which he attempted in Tract 90.

[XIII]

  • 129 John Henry Newman, ‘Remarks on Certain Passages in the Thirty-Nine Articles, 1841,’ The Via Media o (...)

Tract 90: Remarks on Certain Passages in the Thirty-Nine Articles129

  • 130 Ibid., 85.

73The thesis of this Tract contained three tenets: (1) The Articles do not oppose Catholic teaching; (2) They only partially oppose Roman dogma; and (3) They primarily oppose the dominant errors of Rome.130

  • 131 John Henry Newman, ‘A Letter Addressed to the Rev. R.W. Jelf in Explanation of the Ninetieth Tract, (...)
  • 132 John Henry Newman, ‘A Letter Addressed to the Right Reverend Father in God, Richard, Lord Bishop of (...)
  • 133 J.H. Newman, Apologia Pro Vita Sua, op. cit., 133.

74Newman believed that his Tract proved that the Articles were indeed Catholic and in continuity with Apostolic tradition, thus rebutting the attack presented in Wiseman’s article. But the Anglican response was fast, furious, and negative. Many saw it as very favorable to Rome because of the doctrinal continuity which it indicated between the two Churches, prompting Newman to state that his primary intent was that Anglicanism would appropriate the main Roman strength, the development of devotion,131 which is the product of interpersonal encounter with God. Thus, the inculcation of sanctity, he claimed, was ‘the great note of the Church,’132 which as a possession of the Anglican communion, rescued it from Wiseman’s attack, he thought, while sidestepping the issue of unity. But conflict erupted a few months later because of what Newman described as the ‘three blows which broke me’133 during the summer of 1841, all of which were ecclesiastical.

[XIV]

THREE BLOWS

  • 134 Ibid., 134. This occurred during Newman’s research into the life of Athanasius. ‘I saw clearly, in (...)
  • 135 John Henry Newman, Correspondence of John Henry Newman with John Keble and Others, 1839—41, 147. In (...)
  • 136 J.H. Newman, Apologia Pro Vita Sua, op. cit., 137. ‘This was the third blow, which finally shattere (...)
  • 137 Ibid., 140.

75The first was the reappearance of the ghost of 1839, the securus judicat orbis terrarum image, during Newman’s research into Antiquity.134 The second blow was the clamour and movement to condemn Tract 90, and the third and final blow was the Anglican agreement to institute an interdenominational bishopric in Jerusalem: ‘Our Church seems fast protestantising itself,’ he wrote.135 ‘Such acts. . . led me to the gravest suspicion that since the 16th century, it had never been a Church all along.’136It brought me on to the beginning of the end.’137

  • 138 Ibid., 178.

76Into this crisis stepped the aforementioned personal witness, Rev. Dr. Charles Russell, an Irish Catholic cleric, about whom Newman wrote, ‘he had, perhaps, more to do with my conversion than anyone else.’138

[XV]

Rev. Dr. Charles Russell:

The Affective, Interpersonalist Ground of Newman’s Intellectual Conversion

  • 139 Michael Ffinch, Newman: Toward the Second Spring, San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 1992. Ffinch state (...)
  • 140 Ibid., 195. Nov. 22, 1842.

77Charles Russell, who was later to become President of Maynooth University, read Tract 90, and in April, 1841, wrote Newman to correct his misunderstandings of Roman devotional practice and beliefs. The two exchanged correspondence throughout that year and the next on Church matters, and Russell sent Newman much Roman Catholic devotional literature to study.139 While impressed, Newman replied that even if he changed his position on devotions, it ‘would have ‘no necessary tendency’ to undermine his allegiance to the English Church.’140

  • 141 Ibid., 196. Dec. 5 and 12.
  • 142 J. H. Newman, Apologia Pro Vita Sua, op. cit., 179.
  • 143 H. Tristram, ‘Dr. Russell and Newman’s Conversion,’ op. cit., 199.

78But he did express his affection for Russell and his gifts: ‘I shall be much obliged for your intended present, both for its own sake, and as given me by a person, who has written to me in so kind a spirit.’141 Russell became the personal, credible witness Newman needed to begin his step toward Rome. Describing the affective influence of Russell, Newman wrote: ‘He was always gentle, mild, unobtrusive, uncontroversial. He let me alone.’142 Newman began to resolve his ecclesiastical dilemma in early 1843, and, as Henry Tristram wrote, it was in large part due to the affective quality of his relationship with Dr. Russell.143

  • 144 Ibid., 196. ‘Dated, be it noted, 12th December, 1842, two days after his last letter to Russell.’ N (...)
  • 145 J.H. Newman, Apologia Pro Vita Sua, op. cit., 184. Newman explained why he attacked ‘a communion so (...)
  • 146 J.H. Newman, ‘Retractation of Anti-Catholic Statements,’ op. cit., 433.

79The first major effect of Russell was Newman’s ‘significant step, perhaps as a result of his influence, by publishing. . . in February, 1843, a Retractation of Anti-Catholic Statements.’144 Newman explained why he attacked Rome, attributing it primarily to ‘his faith in the Anglican divines.’145 But he wrote that his ‘Admissions. . . involve no retractation of what I have written in defense of Anglican doctrine . . .that the Anglican doctrine is the strongest, nay then only possible antagonist of their system. If Rome is to be withstood, this can be done in no other way.’146

  • 147 Ian Ker, John Henry Newman: A Biography, Ker states that this sermon is the ‘last and most brillian (...)

80The removal of negations was certainly not strong enough to convert Newman’s intellect. This would require positive factors that would come just eight weeks later in his fifteenth University Sermon on ‘The Theory of Developments in Religious Doctrine,’147 the critical document that ultimately synthesized the two tracks.

[XVI]

The Integration of the Tracks:

  • 148 J.H. Newman, Fifteen Sermons, op. cit., 312–51. February 2, 1843. Newman synthesizes the two tracks (...)

University Sermon XV: ‘The Theory of Developments in Religious Doctrine’148

  • 149 Ibid., 331–2.
  • 150 Ibid., 317.

81Here Newman reiterates the primacy of faith that expresses its intuitive impressions of revelation in necessarily ‘piecemeal’ fashion.149 Newman then applies his epistemological analysis of intellectual development to the development of dogma, which changes, even reverses, all the while advancing and evolving to a ‘completeness’ of the ‘whole truth.’150 This intellectual analysis now complemented the new Church image, securus judicat orbis terrarum, which satisfied both his intellect and heart.

  • 151 Ibid., 346–7.
  • 152 Ibid., 349.
  • 153 HOME THEME ELEVEN. Ibid., 347.
  • 154 J.H. Newman, Apologia Pro Vita Sua, op. cit., 190. Newman wrote to Keble that ‘I consider the Roman (...)

82In closing the sermon, Newman interprets revelation in interpersonal terms as the ‘outpourings of eternal harmony. . . from some higher sphere,’ producing ‘those mysterious stirrings of heart, and keen emotions, and strong yearnings after we know not what, and awful impressions from we know not whence.151. . . We have an instinct within us, impelling us, we have external necessity forcing us.’152 And what is the end of these drives? Here Newman employs the concluding metaphor supporting my thesis: ‘They are echoes from Home.’153 Thus, nothing greater could express his relationship with God than the very ground from which all of his religious intuitions developed, the loving affectivity of home. The ‘echoes’ of revelation are but a calling home to the source of being and love. Seeing the continuity of the development of dogma as the encounter of revelation with the graced mind of faith provided the justification Newman needed to make his intellectual break with the Church of England.154

83Newman’s resolution of the ecclesiastical issue is ultimately grounded in a vision of the Church that is itself grounded in the dynamic, interpersonal, experience of grace and faith, two experiences from his childhood of loving family relationships constantly recalled in the metaphors throughout his writings.

84Home was the locus that forged his ultimate harmony of the epistemological and ecclesiological tracks.

[XVII]

  • 155 John Henry Newman, An Essay on the Development of Christian Doctrine, Westminster: Christian Classi (...)

An Essay on the Development of Christian Doctrine:155
The Synthesis of the Tracks and the Analogy of Development:
Faith and Church, Mind and Doctrine

85Built upon last sermon, the Essay on Development harmonized the tracks of religious epistemology and ecclesiology more elaborately in his ‘great law of development’. As always, epistemology is the ground.

  • 156 Ibid., 34. ‘The sum total of the aspects of an idea ‘are capable of coalition. . .into the object’ (...)
  • 157 Ibid., 35, 37, 38. Through confusion, conflict, modification, expansion, and combination, ‘the idea (...)

86First, there is the nature of the mind, whereby an idea, he writes, ‘is commensurate with the sum total of its possible aspects.156 . . .This process. . .(which) I call its development . . . is carried on through and by means of communities of men.’157 The process of development, then, is grounded in the interpersonal, or communal.

  • 158 Ibid., 56. It is also ‘a revelation, which comes to us as a revelation, as a whole, objectively, an (...)
  • 159 Ibid., 75.
  • 160 Ibid., 77. ‘Some rule is necessary for arranging and authenticating these various expressions and r (...)

87Since Christianity is an idea,158 it is subject to this law of development. It is thus God’s intention that doctrine be developmental—’There is a plan of things,’ he writes.159 The doctrine of infallibility is one such example.160

  • 161 Ibid., 101.
  • 162 Ibid., 169.
  • 163 Ibid., 265–6.
  • 164 Ibid., 252. However, this ultimately introduced an understanding of the Church as a kingdom rather (...)

88Newman provides the final link in the chain joining the religious epistemology of faith and the ecclesiastical issue of doctrine: ‘We do not in the first instance exercise our reason upon opinions which are received, but our faith. . . . We take them on trust.’161 Faith and doctrine, then, are inseparable, and faith requires submission, in this instance to the doctrine of infallibility in the Church. Also, if Catholicity is the note of true development, then the Roman Church, and not the Church of England, meets that test.162 It is unity that is proof of apostolic succession and the foremost note of the true Church.163 The ghost of 1839, which reappeared in 1841, was now seen as a real, living idea grasped in the image of the one Church.164

[XVIII]

Postscript: The Third Edition of the Prophetical Office

  • 165 Avery Dulles, Newman. New York: Continuum, 2002,110.

89Newman’s 1877 Preface to the Third Edition of the Prophetical Office lent the final development to his synthesis. Revising the sole concentration on the teaching function of the Church in the original, Newman synthesized the hierarchy, theologians and laity in a ‘developmental’ concept beyond the original. Having resolved the issue of Rome’s continuity with the apostolic church in the Essay, the Preface addressed the second major issue of the original document: the status of popular devotion and political manifestations. This leads to his threefold function or model of the church, analogous to the person of Christ, as priest, prophet, and king. These three functions evolved in the history of the early church, from the affectivity of devotion to the reason of theology to the rule of infallibility. Most notably, but not surprisingly, Newman claims it is popular religion, the affective ground, that gives ‘vitality to the whole organism.’165

90Highlighting the foundation of faith to Church is a comparison of the third edition of the Prophetical Office to the third edition of the Lectures on Justification. We find that Newman’s grasp of interpersonal dynamics eventually was the corrective to his church theory. Supporting this are his thirty-seven significant footnotes to the 1877 edition to the Prophetical Office, reversing, criticizing, or rescinding his original positions, in sharp contrast to his 1874 Preface to the Third Edition of the Lectures, wherein he made only four significant corrections, stating that ‘. . . the Author held in substance in 1874 what he published in 1838.’

91In closing with his Church model as found in the Preface to the Third Edition of the Prophetical Office, we find an affective, faith-based interpersonal vision of the Church that was grounded in Newman’s archetypal model of home and family as itself the ground of relationship with God. ‘Echoes from home’ the ten other similar metaphors and key references cited herein that Newman employed at pivotal points in his work express the interpersonal, affective ground on which Newman constructed his ultimate vision of a faith-driven, communal, universal, multidimensional and obedient church.

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Notes

1 John Henry Newman, Letters and Diaries, vol. i,, ed. Ian Ker and Thomas Gornall, S.J., Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1978, 28.

2 Henry Tristram, Autobiographical Writings, New York, Sheed and Ward, Inc., 1957, 176, September 30, 1821.

3 Ibid., 179–80. Sunday. January 6, 1822: ‘After Church my Father began to speak to me as follows: «I fear you are becoming &c. . . Take care [because] you poured out [Scripture] texts in such quantities. Have a guard. You are encouraging a nervousness and morbid sensibility, and irritability, which may be very serious [and] it is a disease of the mind. Religion, when carried too far, induces a softness of mind [and] no one’s principles can be established at twenty [and] in two or three years will certainly, certainly change. . .You are on dangerous ground. The temper you are encouraging may lead to something alarming. . . . Do nothing ultra. . . . I know you write for the Christian Observer. My opinion of the Christian Observer is this, that it is a humbug. . . . That letter was more like the composition of an old man, than of a youth just entering life with energy and aspirations.’

4 John Henry Newman, Parochial and Plain Sermons, San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 1997, VIII, 8, 1630–37. Preached December 18, 1825, entitled ‘The Inward Witness to the Truth of the Gospel,’ and his first Oxford University Sermon, preached just six months later on July 2, 1826, entitled ‘The Philosophical Temper, First Enjoined by the Gospel.’ Fifteen Sermons Preached Before the University of Oxford Between A.D. 1826 and 1843, Notre Dame: University of Notre Dame Press, 1997, 1–15.

5 H. Tristram. Autobiographical Writings, op. cit., 180. Jan. 11, 1822.

6 R. D. Middleton. Newman at Oxford, New York: Oxford University Press, 1950, 4.

7 Maisie Ward, Young Mr. Newman, New York: Sheed & Ward, 1948, 105.

8 J.H. Newman, Letters and Diaries, op. cit., vol. i, 93.

9 H. Tristram, Autobiographical Writings, op. cit., 202–3. Sunday, Oct. 3: ‘On Thursday he looked beautiful, such calmness, sweetness, composure, and majesty were in his countenance. Can a man be a materialist who sees a dead body? I had never seen one before. (His last words to me, or all but his last, were to bid me read to him the 33 chapter of Isaiah. “Who hath believed” etc.)’

10 John Henry Newman, Loss and Gain, London: Longmans, Green, and Co., 1911, 157–9. The impact on this eldest son is emphasized by its position in the literary structure, the very ending of Part I, providing a major transition for the hero.

11 1. The Six Sermons on Faith: Toward an Interpersonalist Theology. From February to March, 1825. This analysis draws on the work of Thomas Sheridan, S.J., Newman on Justification, New York: Alba House, 1967.

Sermons 1 and 2: ‘The Nature and Object of Faith’; Sermon 3: ‘On Justification through faith only’; Sermon 4: ‘Faith the Evidence and principle of Newness of Heart’; Sermon 5: ‘Necessary Connection of Faith and Works’; Sermon 6: ‘Faith Connected with, and Confirmed by the Inward Witness.’

2. The Three Sermons on Relationship. This analysis also draws on Sheridan’s analysis of Newman’s sermons: ‘Personal Interest in Christ,’ April 10, 1825; ‘John’s and Christ’s Baptism Compared,’ May 8, 1825; and ‘On Infant Baptism,’ drafts of which began in March 1825, but not preached until March 12, 1826.

3. Newman, Parochial and Plain Sermons, ‘Secret Faults,’ vol. i, 4: 31–40. A Sermon on The Affective Ground of Religious Knowledge. Preached June 12, 1825. ‘Self-knowledge is the key to the precepts and doctrines of Scripture.’

4. Newman, Parochial and Plain Sermons, ‘Inward Witness to the Truth of the Gospel,’ A Sermon on the Heart as Ground of Knowledge, Obedience, and Conversion. Vol. viii, 8: 1630–37. Preached December 18, 1825.

5. T. Sheridan, op. cit., 113–117. The Three Church Sermons: Newman’s ecclesiological track.

Sermon 1: ‘Our admittance into the church our title to the Holy Spirit.’ Preached November 20, 1825; Sermon 2: ‘On the Communion of Saints.’ Preached November 27, 1825; Sermon 3: ‘The Use of the Visible Church.’ Preached December 4, 1825.

12 T. Sheridan, op. cit., 92.

13 HOME THEME ONE. This is the first of eleven major incidences enumerated in this paper of the ‘home’ theme in Newman’s work leading up to the Essay on the Development of Christian Doctrine.

14 T. Sheridan, op. cit., 92.

15 Ibid., 96. ‘Necessary Connection of Faith and Works.’ The fifth sermon in the series. ‘Real faith cannot exist without good works. On the other hand, neither can good works exist without faith.’

16 Ibid., 102. April 10, 1825, ‘Personal Interest in Christ,’ and May 8, 1825 and entitled ‘John’s and Christ’s Baptism compared.’

17 Ibid., 41–2.

18 Newman, Parochial and Plain Sermons, ‘Secret Faults,’ vol. i, 4: 31–40. Preached June 12, 1825. ‘Self-knowledge is the key to the precepts and doctrines of Scripture.’

19 Newman, Parochial and Plain Sermons, ‘Inward Witness to the Truth of the Gospel,’ vol. viii, 8: 1630–37. Preached December 18, 1825.

20 Ibid., 111.

21 HOME THEME TWO.

22 T. Sheridan, op. cit., 113–117. The three church sermons were preached on November 20, November 27, and December 4, 1825.

23 Joseph Butler, The Analogy of Religion Natural and Revealed, to the Constitution and Course of Nature, Fifteenth edition, New York: Mark H. Newman, 1843.

24 T. Sheridan, op. cit., ‘Our admittance into the church our title to the Holy Spirit.’ 113.

25 Ibid., 114–5. ‘On the Communion of Saints.’

‘The office of the Holy Spirit is to be considered not only with reference to the growth in grace of individual Christians, but also as regards the edification of the general body of believers. . . . We profess to acknowledge a Holy Catholic Church, that is, a Holy universal church—for catholic means universal. This universal church is not the church of this country, or of that, but of all. It is the general and united company of all believers [for] it embraces all men so far as they are quickened by the Spirit of God, all that in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ Our Lord.’

26 Ibid., 115.

27 Id. ‘The Use of the Visible Church.’

28 Newman, Letters and Diaries, op. cit., vol. i, 238. We learn from his diary that on Saturday, June 25, he began reading Joseph Butler’s Analogy of Religion.

29 M. Ward, Young Mr. Newman, op. cit., 149–151.

30 John Henry Newman, Verses on Various Occasions, London: Longmans, Green, and Co., 1910, 28.

Death came and went:—that so thy image might

Our yearning hearts possess,

Joy of sad hearts, and light of downcast eyes!

Dearest thou art enshrined

In all thy fragrance in our memories;

For we must ever find

Bare thought of thee

Freshen this weary life, while weary life shall be.

Oxford. April, 1828

Such was she then; and such she is,

Shrined in each mourner’s breast;

Such shall she be, and more than this,

In promised glory blest;

When in due lines her Saviour dear

His scattered saints shall range,

And knit in love souls parted here,

Where cloud is none, nor change.

Oxford. August, 1828

31 Meriol Trevor, The Pillar of the Cloud, New York: Doubleday, 1962, 75.

32 Placid Murray, OSB, ed., John Henry Newman: Sermons 1824—1834, Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1991, 55–113.

33 HOME THEME THREE.

34 Newman, Letters and Diaries, op. cit., vol. ii: 191. Newman defines the liturgy as communal and relational: ‘the word liturgy means the form in which the Christian priest conducts and presents to God the joint worship of the congregation.’ John Henry Newman, Sermons: 1824—1843, ed. Placid Murray, OSB, vol. I, Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1991, 60–1.

35 P. Murray, Sermons, 1824—43, op. cit., vol. i, 88–9. All through the Liturgy. . .the Church speaks in the temper of faith. . .Observe how faith leads to love. We do not love each other because we do not believe we are what Christ and the Apostles say we are . . . joint members of Christ.

36 Ibid., 71.

37 HOME THEME FOUR.

38 P. Murray, Sermons, 1824—43, op. cit., 93.

39 John Henry Newman, The Arians of the Fourth Century, London: Basil, Montague, Pickering, 1876.

40 J. H. Newman, Letters and Diaries, op. cit., vol. ii, 131, 142, 165–8, 171, 173, 206.

41 Ibid., 244.

42 Ibid., 228.

43 Ibid., 266–81.

44 Ibid., 270–8.

45 Ibid., 281.

46 J. H. Newman, Parochial and Plain Sermons, op. cit., vol. ii, 5. 259–64. Preached December 27, 1831.

47 Id.

48 Id.

49 Ibid., 258–60.

50 Ibid., 258.

51 Id.

52 HOME THEME FIVE. Id.

53 Ibid., 261.

54 Ibid., 262.

55 John Henry Newman, Collected Poems, Sevenoaks: Fisher Press, 1992.

56 HOME THEME SIX.

57 John Henry Newman, Apologia Pro Vita Sua, Ian Ker, ed., New York: Penguin, 1995, 68. While Newman was in the Mediterranean in 1833, the government passed the Irish Church Reform Bill, substantiating state control of the Church. The next year a Bill was proposed abolishing subscription to the Thirty-Nine Articles as a requirement for admissions and / or graduation to Oxford and Cambridge. The sponsor took an anti-dogmatic view, which for Newman ‘made a shipwreck of the Christian faith.’

58 HOME THEME SEVEN.

59 Newman, Apologia Pro Vita Sua, op. cit., 68, 61.

60 J.H. Newman, Letters and Diaries, op. cit., vol. iv, ed. Ian Ker and Thomas Gornall, Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1980, 63–64. Newman began a series of five letters to The Record in late 1833.

61 Ibid., 111–112. ‘Now their great advantage lies in this; that they all speak the same thing. There is perfect organization in their clergy, perfect accordance of profession in the people. . . Protestants have had nothing definite to appeal to, or point at, either in creed or in polity. . .while the Papists have a Church, though it be a pillar and ground of error. . .I say then, let us make the Church of England, a bulwark against Popery, by advocating the restoration of her discipline.’

62 Ibid., 68. Also, Louis Bouyer, Newman, New York: Meridian Books, 1960, 162. The problem with the Anglican system, which consisted of the work of the Anglican divines, was ‘that most of their writings and ideas were of the nature of improvisations . . . what had to be done was to bring out clearly the body of religious ideas needed to furnish a theological basis to the Anglican theory.’

63 John Henry Newman, The Via Media of the Anglican Church, vol. ii, London: Longmans, Green and Co., 1908, 19–48. Tract 38, July 25 and Tract 40, August 24, 1834.

64 John Walsh, Colin Hayden, and Stephen Taylor, eds., The Church of England, c. 1689—1833, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1993: 56–57.

65 Ibid. On the development of doctrine:

‘It is not unnatural that the Reformers of the sixteenth century should have fallen short of a full Reformation in matters of doctrine and discipline. Light breaks but gradually on the mind: one age begins a work, another finishes.’ (29–30).

‘Fresh articles of faith are necessary. . .according to the rise of successive heresies and errors. These articles were all hidden, as it were, in the Church’s bosom from the first, and brought out into form according to the occasion. Such was the Nicene explanation against Arius; the English Articles against Popery: and such are those now called for in the age of Schism.’ (40).

Newman added the following footnote to the 1883 edition confirming that he recognized, yet not with its fullest ramifications at the time, the principle of doctrinal development: ‘Here, as above, the principle of doctrinal development is accepted as true and necessary for the Christian Church.’ (40).

66 Ibid. On The Apostolic Church criterion:

‘I cannot consent . . . to deprive myself of the Church’s dowry, the doctrines which the Apostles spoke in Scripture and impressed upon the early Church. I receive the Church as a messenger from Christ, rich in treasures old and new, rich with the accumulated wealth of ages. . .Our articles are one portion of that accumulation.’ (31).

67 Ibid. On the nature and limits of the Articles:

‘Our Articles are . . . only protests against certain errors of a certain period of the Church. . . . I am bound to the Articles by subscription; but I am bound, even more solemnly than by subscription, by my baptism and by my ordination, to believe and maintain the whole gospel of Christ.’ (32).

68 Ibid. Function and effect of the Liturgy:

‘The Liturgy, as coming down from the Apostles, is the depository of their complete teaching; while the Articles are polemical, and except as they embody the creeds, are mainly protests against certain definite errors. . . . (T)he Liturgy, all along, speaks of the Gospel dispensation. . .a moral law. . .and that external observances and definite acts of duty are made the means and the tests of faith. . . . (I)t runs quite counter to the innovating spirit of this day.’ (46).

69 Ibid. The need for anti-liberal reform: the subjectivity versus the objectivity of faith:

‘We are now more Protestant than our Reformers. . . . Nowadays, the prominent notion conveyed by it (faith) regards its properties, whether spiritual or not, warm, heart-felt, vital. But in the Catechism, the prominent notion is that of its object, the believing ‘all the articles of the Christian faith,’ according to the Apostle’s declaration, that it is, ‘the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen’ (43). . . . (A)nd besides, not a word said of looking to Christ, resting on Him, and renovation of heart. . . I am speaking of that arrogant Protestant spirit (so called) of the day. . .I cry out . . . that corruptions are pouring in, which, sooner or later, will need a second reformation.’ (48).

70 Ibid., 93–141. Tract 71, entitled ‘On the Mode of Conducting the Controversy with Rome.’ January 1, 1836.

71 Ibid. Further, ‘(O)ur Articles, so far as distinct from the ancient creeds. . . . neither are nor profess to be a system of doctrine.’ (136) On the other hand, Rome asserts the primacy of an unscriptural tradition: ‘(C)ertain notable tenets of Romanism depend solely on. . .Tradition, not on Scripture.’ Newman then lists seven ‘practical grievances’ against Roman practice dealing with sacraments, devotions, and, most notably, authority: ‘Consider the number of points of faith which the Church of Rome has set up. You must believe every one of them.’ (108) A key point here is Newman’s rejection of the principle of infallibility, an extension of the authority principle: ‘The primitive Church was never called upon. . .to pronounce upon other points of faith (Newman is referring to points of faith other than the creed). . . . This is the question of a philosophical mind, and the Church of Rome meets it with a theory. . .of infallibility. . . . But the English Church does not assume infallibility.’ (133) Ironically, while Newman had noted the failure of authority in the fourth century as the major factor in the spread of heresy, and while he was currently calling for a restoration of Church discipline, he had not yet connected the authority principle to the crucial issue of doctrine, as he would later do. But he does maintain the essential objective, truth, which constantly directed his mission: ‘Nor is it becoming. . .to dispute for victory not for truth, and to be careless of the manner in which we urge conclusions.’ (102).

72 Ibid. ‘There is. . .a want of correspondence between the appearance presented by the Roman theology in theory and its appearance in practice. The separate doctrines of Romanism are very different . . . in the abstract, and when developed, applied, and practiced.’ (117–118).

73 Ibid. ‘The objections. . .against the English Church. . .are.dissimilar from those which lie against the Church of Rome, and which relate to clear and distinct perversions and corruptions of divine truth. Should it, however, be asked, whence our knowledge of the truth should be derived. . .it may be replied, first, that the writings of the Fathers contain abundant directions how to ascertain it; next, that their directions are distinctly propounded and supported by our Divines of the seventeenth century, though little comparatively at present is known concerning those great authors. Nor could a more acceptable or important service be done to our Church at this present moment, than the publication of some systematic introduction to theology, embodying and illustrating the great and concordant principles set forth by Hammond, Taylor, and their brethren before and after them.’ (140).

74 Ibid.How is it that the particular Christian body to which I belong happens to be the right one?. . .Now the primitive Church answered this question, by appealing to the single fact, that all the Apostolic Churches all over the world did agree together.’ (132). ‘Unity in the whole body of the Church. . .is the divinely blessed symbol and pledge of the true faith.’ (134).

75 John Henry Newman, Essays Critical and Historical, vol. i., London: Longmans, Green, and Co., 1895: 30–101. Tract 73: ‘On the Introduction of Rational Principles into Revealed Religion.’ Feb. 2, 1836.

76 Ibid., 31. Newman recognizes three criteria of Rationalism which render it ‘a certain abuse of Reason; that is, a use of it for purposes for which it never was intended, and is unfitted: to rationalize in matters of Revelation is to make our reason the standard and measure of the doctrines revealed. . . . And thus a rationalistic spirit is the antagonist of Faith; for Faith is, in its very nature, the acceptance of what our reason cannot reach, simply and absolutely upon testimony.’

77 John Henry Newman, The Via Media, vol. i, London: Longmans, Green, and Co., 1911.

78 Ibid., 7. Protestantism is rejected outright since ‘It does not attempt this at all; it abandons the subject altogether.’

79 Ibid. ‘Since the Church is not now one, it is not infallible; since the one has become in one sense the many, the full prophetical idea is not now fulfilled; and, with the idea also is lost the full endowment and the attribute of Infallibility in particular, supposing that were ever included in it.’ (207, 201). This resulted in subsequent corruptions by additions to the primitive creed, especially by the Council of Trent, under threat of anathemas. (232).

80 Ibid., 249, 250. ‘A vast system. . .consisting of a certain body of Truth, pervading the Church like an atmosphere, partly written, partly unwritten, partly the interpretation, partly the supplement of Scripture, partly preserved in intellectual expressions, partly latent in the spirit and temper of Christians; poured to and fro in closets and upon the housetops, in liturgies, in controversial works, in obscure fragments, in sermons, in popular prejudices, in local customs. This I call Prophetical Tradition, existing primarily in the bosom of the Church itself. . .of a very different kind from Episcopal Tradition, yet in its first origin it is equally Apostolical, and, viewed as a whole, equally claims our zealous maintenance. The episcopal tradition is the ‘creed’ and a ‘tradition. . .formally and statedly enunciated and delivered from hand to hand.’’

81 Ibid., 262–263.

82 Ibid., 142. ‘Truth has a force which error cannot counterfeit.’

83 Ibid., 4. Although order is lacking: ‘We have a vast inheritance, but no inventory of our treasures. All is given us in profusion; it remains for us to catalogue, sort, distribute, select, harmonize, and complete.’ (24).

84 Ibid., xxxiii.

85 Ibid., 251–252. ‘For a time the whole church agreed together in. . .the Tradition; but in course of years, love waxing cold and schisms abounding. . .branches developed portions of it for themselves. . .(and) they are the ruins and perversions of Primitive Tradition.’

86 Ibid., 283. ‘They do not know how they see.’

87 Ibid., 257.

88 HOME THEME EIGHT. Ibid., 257–258.

89 John Henry Newman, Lectures on the Doctrine of Justification, 3rd edition, London: Rivingtons, 1890.

90 Ibid. The Protestant position of justification by faith alone is rejected as ‘erroneous,’ and the Roman position of justification by obedience (read infallibility) is rejected as ‘defective,’ (2) the former because it ‘exercises its gift without the exercise or even the presence of love (16). . . . It justifies, then, as apprehending Christ, which is its essence,’ (29) and the latter because it is ‘incomplete,—truth, but not the whole truth; viz., that justification consists in love, or sanctity, or obedience, or “renewal of the Holy Ghost.”’ (30).

91 Ibid., 32. ‘It is affirmed that, since man fell, he has lain under one great need. . . . (H)e needs a new birth unto righteousness.’ This is accomplished by God’s ‘creating in us new wills and new powers for the observance of it (and) converting that which is by nature an occasion of condemnation into an instrument of acceptance.’ (35).

92 Ibid., 42.

93 Ibid., 145. ‘In Him we live, and move and have our being.’ But further, that ‘Divine Presence vouchsafed to us. . . is specially said to be the presence of Christ . . . in some mysterious. . . manner bestowed upon us (148). . .(which is) the absorbing vision of a present, indwelling God.’ (190).

94 Ibid., 149.

95 Ibid., 178. ‘Further, it is our cooperation which is the condition of the continued Presence within us. (184) Thus, works are a ‘cooperation’ and ‘concurrent cause’ of ratifying the imputation of grace. Justification is a ‘word having a work for its complement.’ (98). . . . That is, the word will rightly stand either for imputation or for sanctification.’ (99) Justification and renewal, or conversion, ‘are practically convertible terms.’ (88).

96 Ibid., 253.

97 Id.

98 Ibid., 257.

99 Ibid., 267.

100 Ibid., 266. Synthesizing Paul and James, faith also involves a dimension of the will, as it includes submission to the rule of works grounded in the temper of charity. (274).

101 Ibid., 302–3. ‘It is faith developed. . .as an image . . . the beginning of that which is eternal, the operation of the Indwelling Power which acts from within us outwards and round about us. . .so intimately with our will as to be in a true sense one with it [and] runs over into our thoughts, desires, feelings. . .and works, combines them all together into one, makes the whole man its one instrument. . . . Such is faith, springing up out of. . .love . . . existing indeed in feelings but passing on into acts, into victories. . .over self, being the power of the will over the whole soul for Christ’s sake, constraining the reason to accept mysteries, the heart to acquiesce in suffering, the hand to work. . .the voice to bear witness. . .(T)hey are all instances of self-command, arising from Faith seeing the invisible world, and Love choosing it.’

102 Ibid., ix. ‘Unless the Author held in substance in 1874 what he published in 1838, he would not at this time be reprinting what he wrote as an Anglican; certainly not with so little added by way of safeguard.’ The Lectures contains thirteen significant footnotes, nine of which are elaborations of points and only four are corrections: ibid., elaborations: 2, 31, 73, 154, 198, 201, 226, 343, 348–9; corrections: 101, 186, 190, 236.

103 John Henry Newman, Fifteen Sermons, op. cit., 176–201. Preached January 6, 1839.

104 Ibid., 182–185.

105 Ibid., 176.

106 HOME THEME NINE. Ibid., 177.

107 Ibid., 183.

108 Ibid., 184. ‘Reason may be the judge, without being the origin, of faith.’

109 Ibid., 180.

110 Ibid., 202–21. Jan. 13, 1839. Avery Dulles states that Newman ‘approach(es) the question (of faith) phenomenologically.’ ‘From Images to Truth: Newman on Revelation and Faith,’ Theological Studies 51 (1990), 262.

111 Ibid., 214.

112 Ibid., 222–50. May 21, 1839.

113 Ibid., 234.

114 HOME THEME TEN. Ibid., 236.

115 Ibid., 242. ‘Its attempts at approaching and pleasing Him are acceptable or not, according as they are or are not self-willed; and they are self-willed when they are irrespective of God’s revealed will.’

116 J.H Newman, Apologia Pro Vita Sua, op. cit., 111.

117 J.H. Newman, Letters and Diaries, op. cit., vol. vii, ed. Gerard Tracey, Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1995. ‘It was during this course of reading that for the first time a doubt came upon me of the tenableness of Anglicanism. . . . (B)y the end of August I was seriously alarmed. . . . My stronghold was Antiquity; now here, in the middle of the fifth century, I found, as it seemed to me, Christendom of the sixteenth and the nineteenth centuries reflected. I saw my face in that mirror, and I was a Monophysite. The Church of the Via Media was in the position of the Oriental communion, Rome was where she is now, and the Protestants were the Eutychians.’ (114).

118 J.H. Newman, Apologia Pro Vita Sua, op. cit., 115–6. The axiom is found in Augustine, Contra Epistolam Parmeniani, iii, 3. Newman translated it as ‘The universal Church is in its judgments secure of truth.’ (Essays, ii. 101.) ‘They decided ecclesiastical questions on a simpler rule than Antiquity. . . . (H)ere then Antiquity was deciding against itself.’

119 J.H. Newman, Letters and Diaries, op. cit., vol. vii, 180.

120 J.H. Newman, Fifteen Sermons, op. cit., ‘Implicit and Explicit Reason,’ 251–277. Preached June 29, 1840.

121 Avery Dulles perceived these qualities in Newman’s own conversion: ‘His conversion was therefore not a repudiation but an affirmation of the past; it was continuous, progressive, and incremental.’ ‘Newman, Conversion, and Ecumenism.’ Theological Studies 51 (1990), 723.

122 J.H. Newman, Fifteen Sermons, op. cit., 267.

123 Ibid., 277.

124 Ibid., 275.

125 J.H. Newman, Fifteen Sermons, op. cit., 278–311. Preached June 1, 1841.

126 Ibid., 293.

127 Ibid., 279.

128 Ibid., 287.

129 John Henry Newman, ‘Remarks on Certain Passages in the Thirty-Nine Articles, 1841,’ The Via Media of the Anglican Church, vol. ii, London, Longmans, Green and Co., 1908, 259–356. Dated February 27, 1841.

130 Ibid., 85.

131 John Henry Newman, ‘A Letter Addressed to the Rev. R.W. Jelf in Explanation of the Ninetieth Tract,’ The Via Media of the Anglican Church, vol. ii, 386. ‘There is at this moment a great progress of the religious mind of our Church to something deeper and truer than satisfied the last century. . . . The age is moving toward something, and most unhappily the one religious communion. . . in possession of this something, is the Church of Rome. She alone. . . has given free scope to the feelings of awe, mystery, tenderness, reverence, devotedness, and other feelings which may be especially called Catholic.’

132 John Henry Newman, ‘A Letter Addressed to the Right Reverend Father in God, Richard, Lord Bishop of Oxford, on the occasion of the Ninetieth Tract,’ The Via Media of the Anglican Church, vol. ii, 442.

133 J.H. Newman, Apologia Pro Vita Sua, op. cit., 133.

134 Ibid., 134. This occurred during Newman’s research into the life of Athanasius. ‘I saw clearly, in the history of Arianism, the pure Arians were the Protestants, the semi-Arians were the Anglicans, and that Rome now was what it was then. The truth lay, not with the Via Media, but with what was called the extreme party.’

135 John Henry Newman, Correspondence of John Henry Newman with John Keble and Others, 1839—41, 147. In October of 1843 Parliament authorized the establishment of a Jerusalem bishopric under English control but multidenominational.

136 J.H. Newman, Apologia Pro Vita Sua, op. cit., 137. ‘This was the third blow, which finally shattered my faith in the Anglican Church.’

137 Ibid., 140.

138 Ibid., 178.

139 Michael Ffinch, Newman: Toward the Second Spring, San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 1992. Ffinch states that this was ‘the beginning of one of the most important correspondences in Newman’s life.’ (113). In October, 1842, Russell sent Newman a volume of sermons of St. Alphonsus Liguori ‘as a specimen of our popular teaching; and perhaps there never was a writer who spoke more strongly upon the prerogatives of our Blessed Lady than St. Alphonsus.’ Letter from Russell to Newman dated October 31, 1841: H. Tristram, ‘Dr. Russell and Newman’s Conversion,’ The Irish Ecclesiastical Record, lxvi, Sept., 1945, 195.

140 Ibid., 195. Nov. 22, 1842.

141 Ibid., 196. Dec. 5 and 12.

142 J. H. Newman, Apologia Pro Vita Sua, op. cit., 179.

143 H. Tristram, ‘Dr. Russell and Newman’s Conversion,’ op. cit., 199.

144 Ibid., 196. ‘Dated, be it noted, 12th December, 1842, two days after his last letter to Russell.’ Newman, ‘Retractation of Anti-Catholic Statements,’ The Via Media of the Anglican Church, vol. ii., 425–33. Including Arians, the Prophetical Office, and Tracts 15, 20, and 38.

145 J.H. Newman, Apologia Pro Vita Sua, op. cit., 184. Newman explained why he attacked ‘a communion so ancient, so wide-spreading, so fruitful in Saints,’ attributing it to two factors: his faith in the Anglican divines and ‘an impetuous temper, a hope of approving myself to persons I respect, and a wish to repel the charge of Romanism.’

146 J.H. Newman, ‘Retractation of Anti-Catholic Statements,’ op. cit., 433.

147 Ian Ker, John Henry Newman: A Biography, Ker states that this sermon is the ‘last and most brilliant’ of the series. (266).

148 J.H. Newman, Fifteen Sermons, op. cit., 312–51. February 2, 1843. Newman synthesizes the two tracks in this sermon: ‘It is my purpose . . . to investigate the connection between Faith and Dogmatic confession, as far as relates to the sacred doctrines.’

149 Ibid., 331–2.

150 Ibid., 317.

151 Ibid., 346–7.

152 Ibid., 349.

153 HOME THEME ELEVEN. Ibid., 347.

154 J.H. Newman, Apologia Pro Vita Sua, op. cit., 190. Newman wrote to Keble that ‘I consider the Roman Catholic Communion to be the Church of the Apostles. . . . I am very far more sure that England is in schism, than that the Roman additions to the Primitive Creed may not be developments, arising out of a keen and vivid realizing of the Divine Depositum of Faith.’

J.H. Newman, Apologia Pro Vita Sua, op. cit., 75. ‘It was my portion for whole years to remain without any satisfactory basis for my religious profession, in a state of moral sickness, neither able to acquiesce in Anglicanism, nor able to go to Rome. But I bore it, till in course of time my way was made clear to me.’

155 John Henry Newman, An Essay on the Development of Christian Doctrine, Westminster: Christian Classics, 1968. Originally published October 6, 1845.

156 Ibid., 34. ‘The sum total of the aspects of an idea ‘are capable of coalition. . .into the object’ to which they belong.’

157 Ibid., 35, 37, 38. Through confusion, conflict, modification, expansion, and combination, ‘the idea to which these various aspects belong, will be to each mind separately what at first it was only to all together. . . . This process. . .(which) I call its development . . . is carried on through and by means of communities of men.’

158 Ibid., 56. It is also ‘a revelation, which comes to us as a revelation, as a whole, objectively, and with a profession of infallibility.’ (53). Newman traces this development from revelation to impression to idea to doctrine: ‘As God is one, so the impression which He gives us of Himself is one. . . . It is the vision of an Object. . . . Religious men. . . . have an idea or vision of the Blessed Trinity in Unity.’ (53).

159 Ibid., 75.

160 Ibid., 77. ‘Some rule is necessary for arranging and authenticating these various expressions and results of Christian doctrine.’ This is the infallible power of deciding the truth of theological and ethical statements. (79). The principles of development of doctrine and that of infallibility meet in the Arian heresy of the fourth century. Thus, Papal supremacy was itself a form of doctrinal development. (142–4).

161 Ibid., 101.

162 Ibid., 169.

163 Ibid., 265–6.

164 Ibid., 252. However, this ultimately introduced an understanding of the Church as a kingdom rather than a family. Thus, the monarchical principle is a defining element of the Church as an exponent of revelation. As God is sovereign, so is His temporal locus, and a sovereign requires submission by definition. Failure to submit to the authority of the Church, then, is the ecclesiastical form of a violation of the inherent nature of the relationship between God and man, which describes the history of heresy.

165 Avery Dulles, Newman. New York: Continuum, 2002,110.

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Dr Robert C. Christie, « ‘Echoes from Home’: The Personalist Ground of Newman’s Ecclesiology. Affection as the Key to Newman’s Intellectual Discernment on the Issue of Church », Cahiers victoriens et édouardiens [En ligne], 70 automne | 2009, mis en ligne le 17 décembre 2018, consulté le 14 décembre 2019. URL : http://journals.openedition.org/cve/4845 ; DOI : 10.4000/cve.4845

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Dr Robert C. Christie

Devry University, North Brunswick, New Jersey
Robert C. CHRISTIE is Senior Professor of Philosophy and Religion at DeVry University, North Brunswick, NJ. He holds a Ph.D. in Systematic Theology from Fordham University, writing his dissertation on John Henry Newman. He is on the Board of Trustees of the National Institute for Newman Studies in Pittsburgh, PA, USA, as well as the Board of Directors of the Venerable John Henry Newman Association, USA. He is also editor of the Association’s newsletter. He has published and lectured widely on various aspects of Newman’s life and work.

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