Newman Studies Journal

Twice a year, NINSDU publishes the Newman Studies Journal (NSJ), which offers Newman-related articles in diverse fields, including philosophy, theology, spirituality, history, literature, and education.

Sources for NSJ articles include accepted submissions from the participants in the Newman Scholarship Program, select presentations from the Annual National Conference of the Newman Association of America, and unsolicited contributions submitted by Newman scholars throughout the world. Reviews of new works related to Newman are included, along with a Newman chronology and bibliography.

The Journal is a peer-reviewed publication under the supervision of an editorial board composed of noted Newman scholars. The editorial office is located at the Gailliot Center for Newman Studies.

PREVIEW: Vol.10 Issue 2, Fall 2012

Order Vol.10 Issue 2, Fall 2012 Here


Newman's Parochial and Plain Sermons "found a response in the hearts and minds and consciences of those to whom they were addressed." W. J. Copeland (15 May 1868)


 John Henry Newman and the Oratory School Latin Plays

This essay describes Newman's adaptations of plays by Plautus (c. 254-184 BC) and Terence (195/185-159 BC) for performance at the Birmingham Oratory School.  Because Newman believed in the value of Latin plays for students, he expended a great deal of energy on their adaptation and production while carefully editing the plays to omit any questionable content.

Ryan McDermott, who teaches medieval literature and culture in the Department of English at the University of Pittsburgh, researched and wrote this essay as a research fellow at the National Institute for Newman Studies in Pittsburgh.

 John Henry Newman and Empiricism

John Henry Newman (1801-1890) was deeply influenced by the British empiricist school of the eighteenth century, particularly by the philosophy of David Hume (1711-1776). Though frequently disputing Hume's conclusions, Newman nevertheless worked to develop a theistic form of empiricism that integrated the developing scientific worldview with traditional Christian philosophy. In light of recently renewed interest in Hume, this essay first explores Newman's empiricist leanings and then proposes that his distinctive philosophy can contribute to modern discussions about the relationship of science and religion.

Ryan Vilbig, a doctoral student concentrating in biophysics at The Catholic University of America, Washington, DC, has published in Newman Studies Journal and American Journal of Renal Physiology.

John Henry Newman's Educational Ideas in Japan

John Henry Newman's educational ideas, which first became known in Japan before the Pacific War, continue to attract followers, especially as a result of the foundation of the Newman Society of Japan in 1983.  However, this interest in Newman has had mixed results: on the one hand, some Japanese secular scholars who have tried to adopt Newman's educational ideas to Japanese higher education do not seem interested in Catholicism. On the other hand, some post-war educational ideas of Japanese Catholics seem incompatible with Newman's spirituality and thought.

Kei Uno, assistant professor at Tamagawa University and a member of the Newman Society of Japan, is the author of Newman and Modern Japan: The Reception of Educational Ideas and Activities of J. H. Newman in Japan (Tokyo: Kyôyûsha, 2010).


 John Henry Newman's Whitehall Preachership of 1828: "Christmas day what a nuisance!"     

Newman was offered a preachership at Whitehall Chapel in London for the second part of December; he accepted the invitation, even though he anticipated that the task would be "a bore." Unfortunately for Newman, his experience turned out to be more burdensome than he had expected; the result was a very frustrating Christmas.

Dominic Pigneri is a doctoral student in systematic theology at The Catholic University of America, Washington, DC.

The Christian Life as War in John Henry Newman's Parochial and Plain Sermons (1834-1843)

Among the various descriptions of the Christian life in Newman's Parochial and Plain Sermons (1834-1843), the metaphor of war is prominent.  This essay examines Newman's extensive use of the metaphor of war from the viewpoint of cognitive semantics, which assumes that transcendental reality can only be conceived of and described in language that uses such conceptual mechanisms as image schemata, metaphor, metonymy, and conceptual blending. Analyzing the conceptual phenomena inherent in the metaphor of war provides both a better understanding of Newman's Parochial and Plain Sermons as well as a better appreciation of Newman's understanding of the Christian life.

Marcin Kuczok defended his dissertation in June, "Conceptualization of the Notion of 'Christian Life' in John Henry Newman's Parochial and Plain Sermons," and was awarded the doctoral degree in linguistics by the University of Silesia (Poland).

John Henry Newman on Miracles and Skepticism

In his sermon-"Miracles no Remedy for Unbelief" (2 May 1830)-Newman warned his audience that the lack of miracles often serves as an excuse for the true cause of unbelief: hardening the heart against the grace of God.  What his audience presumably did not know was that Newman's sermon reiterated an extended disagreement with his brother, Charles Robert Newman.  Both the sermon and the sibling struggle over faith versus unbelief still provide enduring lessons for contemporary readers.

Joshua Canzona is a doctoral student in the Theology and Religious Studies program at Georgetown University, Washington, DC.

John Henry Newman's Methodology for Theological Inquiry

This essay proposes that Newman's developmental methodology, as presented in his Fifteenth Oxford University Sermon, has a contemporary relevance for advancing insights into revelation by encouraging believers to engage with the theo-Logos.  Since the word of God is embodied in doctrine and understood through symbol and ritual, doctrinal propositions should be considered "living ideas" which become embodied in the believer and so deepen the believer's relationship with Christ and the community of believers through a liturgical symbolic order.

Joseph Redfield Palmisano, S.J. is The Michael Hurley, S.J. Post-Doctoral Teaching and Research Fellow (2011-2013) at the Irish School of Ecumenics-Trinity College Dublin, Ireland.

A Silent Melody: John Henry Newman's Fifteenth Oxford University Sermon as an Expression of Personal Struggle

Although Newman's Fifteenth Oxford University Sermon is often considered a precursor to An Essay on the Development of Christian Doctrine (1845), the following essay views this Sermon as an expression of Newman's personal struggle from 1839 to 1845: in the midst of confusion, he pondered; against the threat of liberal skepticism, he defended truth; in the face of doubt, he reaffirmed his relationship with God. 

James Crile is a doctoral student in historical theology at The Catholic University of America, Washington, DC.


M. Katherine Tillman: Cardinal Newman: Man of Letters

Reviewed by John Groppe


Erich Przywara, Ed.: The Heart of Newman

Reviewed by Ryan Vilbig  


Donald Graham: From Eastertide to Ecclesia

Reviewed by  John T. Ford

Paul Hitchens: John Henry Newman, Cor ad Cor Loquitur, El corazón habla al corazón

Reviewed by John T. Ford

Ambrose Mong Il-Ren: The Liberal Spirit and Anti-Liberal Discourse of John Henry Newman

Reviewed by Dwight Lindley 

Peter M. J. Stravinskas: What Mary Means to Christians

Reviewed by John T. Ford

Meriol Trevor: Shadows and Images: A Novel 

Reviewed by John T. Ford

Kei Uno:  Newman and Modern Japan

Reviewed by John T. Ford

Juan R. Vélez: Passion For Truth: The Life of John Henry Newman

Reviewed by John T. Ford


Edward E. Kelly

Gregory Winterton




Order Vol.10 Issue 2, Fall 2012 Here

Editorial Staff

Editor in Chief
John T. Ford, C.S.C.
The Catholic University of America

Gerard H. McCarren
Immaculate Conception Seminary,
Seton Hall University

M. Katherine Tillman
University of Notre Dame

Associate Editors
Drew Morgan, C.O.
The Pittsburgh Oratory

Catharine M. Ryan
The National Institute for Newman Studies

Managing Editor
Lisa M. Goetz
The National Institute for Newman Studies

Editorial Consultants
Frederick Aquino
Abilene Christian University
Jerome Bertram, C.O.
The Oxford Oratory
Duane Bruce
Saint Anselm College
Edward J. Enright, O.S.A.
Villanova University
Marvin R. O’Connell
University of Notre Dame
Bernadette Waterman Ward
University of Dallas

NINS Board of Directors

Drew P. Morgan, C.O., President
Catharine M. Ryan, Secretary & Treasurer
David Abernethy, C.O.
Dr. Henry J. Gailliot
Dr. Robert C. Christie