Oratorians Welcome News of Founder's Beatification


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BIRMINGHAM, England, MARCH 16, 2010 ( The priests of the English Oratories founded by Cardinal John Henry Newman are affirming they are "delighted" by the official announcement that Benedict XVI will beatify their founder when he visits England in September.

Father Richard Duffield, provost of the Birmingham Oratory, and actor of the Cause of John Henry Newman, today noted in a statement that the Pope's personal "life-long devotion to Newman has made a profound contribution to understanding the depth and significance of our founder's legacy."

"[The Holy Father's] decision to beatify Newman in person confers a unique blessing upon the English Oratories and all who have drawn inspiration from Newman's life and work," Father Duffield added.

The beatification will take place in the Archdiocese of Birmingham, where Cardinal Newman spent his adult life, first in Oxford, where he lived as an Anglican and was received into the Catholic Church, and later in Birmingham itself where he founded and worked in the Birmingham Oratory for more than 40 years.

John Henry Newman lived from 1801 to 1890, and converted to the Catholic faith in 1845.