Friday, September 10, 2010

Holy Father to preside over the Beatification mass, breaking his own precedent - Newman, the first to be honoured thus.

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Pope Benedict XVI is making a statement about the importance of Cardinal John Henry Newman - the illustrious son of England by breaking his own precedent - by presiding personally at his Beatification Mass on Sept. 19 - a rare honour - the first time in his pontificate!

From the begining of his pontificate, the Pope established that Beatification ceremonies would take place in the diocese of origin of the blessed, and that they would be presided over by the president of the Pontifical Council of Saints' Causes.

Pope Benedict's decision to preside over Newman's beatification reflects his love and respect for a fellow theologian whose work he has studied from his seminary days, and whose influence on the Second Vatican Council made him perhaps the most influential theologian on the council, even though it was meeting more than 70 years after his death.

Father Lombardi the Vatican spokesman said the Holy Father's decision to make "an exception should be seen in a positive sense." He said, Cardinal Newman's beatification ceremony is not only "very much united to the Pope's trip to the United Kingdom", but it is also undoubtedly "a particular sign of the appreciation, interest and importance" the Holy Father attributes to the figure of Ven. Cardinal Newman.

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