Oratorian Father Ignatius Harrison, postulator for Blessed John Henry’s cause, told the Register Feb. 13 that he heard the news with “enormous elation.”

Everyone at the Birmingham Oratory, which Cardinal Newman founded, is “absolutely delighted that the heroic sanctity has been recognized,” Father Harrison said, “and we look forward to many more graces with his help.”  

The papal decree comes after the Vatican last year judged the healing of a woman to be miraculous. The case relates to a law graduate in the archdiocese of Chicago who had been inexplicably healed in 2013 after praying for Blessed John Henry’s intercession while suffering from a “life-threatening pregnancy.”  The woman, whose name has yet to be made public, was inspired to pray for the intercession of the cardinal after reportedly watching a film about him on EWTN.

The mother had “unstoppable internal bleeding which threatened the life of her child in the womb,” said Father Harrison. “She had long been a devotee of Blessed John Henry, and in prayer she directly and explicitly invoked Newman's intercession to stop the bleeding.”

“The miraculous healing was immediate, complete and permanent,” Father Harrison said, adding that the “child was born normally."

The date of the canonization of Blessed John Henry has not yet been announced, but is expected to take place later this year. “We are now hoping that it will be sooner rather than later,” Father Harrison said.

The founder of the Oratory of St. Philip Neri in England, Cardinal Newman was one of the most prominent converts to the Catholic Church from Anglicanism in the 19th century and was a renowned preacher and theologian. 

The author of 40 books and 21,000 letters, his most famous are his book-length Essay on the Development of Christian Doctrine, On Consulting the Faithful in Matters of Doctrine, Apologia Pro Vita Sua — his spiritual autobiography up to 1864 — and Essay on the Grammar of Assent.

According to Monsignor Roderick Strange, a Newman scholar and author of a book entitled “John Henry Newman, A Mind Alive,”  “He’s not just some figure from the distant past but somebody who really does have something that is significant for us, still today”.

NOTE:  Two informative resources are