Arcadian Times

Founded May 8th, 2009


A Saint for Ham?

The childhood home of Venerable John Henry Newman, (21 February 1801 – 11 August 1890) can be found in Ham Street, Ham.

Built in 1742 and originally called Grove House, the impressive building was to remain in Cardinal Newman's thoughts.

" I have been looking at the windows of our home at Ham near Richmond, where I lay aged five looking at the candles stuck in them in celebration of the victory of Trafalgar.

I have never seen the house since September 1807 - I know more about it than any house I have been in since, and could pass an examination in it. It has ever been in my dream".



Cardinal John Henry Newman was a Roman catholic priest and cardinal who converted to Roman Catholicism from Anglicanism in October 1845.

Newman was originally an Anglican, but over the years he considered Anglicanism and the Church of England were not apostolic. He was received into the Roman Catholic Church on 9 October 1845. He found the formality and the rigeur of the Catholic church to be conducive to his spirituality.

Newman was not without his critics, though his dedication to the Roman Catholic church and his deep held religious conviction was never in doubt. Newman was invited to Dublin in 1854 to take the position of rector at the newly established Catholic University of Dublin, now known as University College Dublin.

In 1859, Newman with the Birmingham Oratory set up a school for the sons of gentlemen.

Newman became a Cardinal in 1879. Newman's elevation to cardinal took place on 12 May, with the title of San Giorgio al Velabro. The now Cardinal Newman made it clear that he was opposed to all "liberalism in religion."

After suffering from pneumonia Cardinal Newman died on the 11th August 1890.
He was buried in the cemetery at Rednal Hill, Birmingham, at the country house of the Oratory.

The legacy of Cardinal Newman continues as he is the subject of beatification. In order to be made a Saint, at least two confirmed miracles must be confirmed by the intercession attributed to the evoked, in this case Cardinal Newman. The process is ongoing but it has been suggested that Pope Benedict XVI has taken a personal interest in Newman's cause. It could be that in the near future, Ham can claim to be connected to the first Englishman to be canonised since the 17th Century.

Article: Arcadian Times. May 2009