Newman became a Catholic because he had to revise drastically the view he championed as a Tractarian about the Church of England. It was a most painful experience for him to recognize that the Church of England was a mere human contrivance, with no claim whatsoever to be considered a Church. As a Catholic, Newman presented, both in his books and in correspondence, this view of his on the Church of England with a stunning consistency. While what he said in his books was public knowledge, the corresponding material in his letters, which provide two-thirds of the material presented in this book, failed to become the subject of a comprehensive study. This book aims at filling that void, in testimony to the weight which Newman’s views have come to carry. At a time when the Church of England sinks into an abyss morally, there should be a prophetic touch to a specific foreboding of Newman. He found it possible that the Church of England would eventually become an enemy of Truth. Already as an Anglican Newman rejected the notion that unity should be pursued at the price of Truth. This should seem most portentous for these ecumenical times in which some Catholics look for enlightenment in the writings of the Anglican Newman. No small value should be seen in the ecclesiological framework within which Newman took a strongly negative view of the validity of Anglican orders.
By Fr. Stanley L. Jaki
ISBN 1-892548-38-0 • viii + 364 pages • softcover • $20
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