Cardinal John Henry Newman commenced a profound spiritual influence on the Church of England as well as the Catholic communion in the nineteenth century. His writing is still of great importance, perhaps especially to people in religious difficulties. Sometimes Newman is referred to as: The Father of the Second Vatican Council. He was made Cardinal by Pope Leo XIII in 1879 and there is a movement to further his process towards beatification.

After a brief correspondence initiated by Gerard Manley Hopkins, in a letter dated the 28th of August 1866, Hopkins met Father Newman to discuss how to proceed with his conversion and how to deal with his masters at Oxford as well as with his parents. In contrast with what you may expect of a religious leader Newman advocated consideration. (Martin 1992). Afterwards Hopkins wrote to Bridges on his perception of the meeting:

Dr. Newman was most kind, I mean in the very best sense, for his manner is not that of solicitous kindness, but genial and almost, so to speak, unserious. And if I may say so, he was so sensible. He asked questions which made it clear for me how to act; I will tell you presently what that is: he made sure I was acting deliberately and wished to hear my arguments; when I had given them and said I cd. see no way out of them, he laughed and said ‘Nor can I’…. In no way did he urge me on, rather the other way…

No there were no arguments against his conversion and 21st October 1866 Gerard was received into the Roman Catholic Church.

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