Date of Submission
St Clair Johnson, R. (2005). Spirituality in the parochial and plain sermons of John Henry Newman (Doctoral thesis, Australian Catholic University). Retrieved from https://doi.org/10.4226/66/5a94aeee5e4a3
John Henry Newman was a renowned preacher especially in his years as an Anglican priest. This thesis aims to see what spiritual counsel he was preaching to his Anglican congregations and why he was so successful. For reasons of practicality it is limited to an examination of his principal collection of sermons, the eight volumes of Parochial and Plain Sermons which are pastoral sermons selected by Newman himself from those he delivered as an Anglican priest. It begins with some background on Newman himself and the religious context of England in the early 19th century. It also considers the basic principles of rhetorical skill. The discussion of the spirituality set out in the sermons begins with Newman's presentation of God and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. The thesis outlines his teaching on prayer, grace and the sacraments. It describes his emphasis on the unreality of this life and the prospect of immortality, the danger and evil of sin and the need for constant striving to do God's will. It then lists the principal elements of behaviour of the true Christian, concluding with the Blessed Virgin Mary as the model of Christian behaviour. The final chapter cites the views of a range of authors on Newman's effectiveness as a spiritual leader and identifies the elements which made him so successful as a preacher.