Denis, Leonardi and Newman

We have two saints on the universal calendar today, and one blessed yet to be put thereon, who will be canonized this Sunday.
In historical order, the first is Saint Denis, patron of Paris, her first bishop, and of France. He was likely martyred in the mid-third century in the Decian persecution, as the legend goes, a cephalophore: That is, he was decapitated after a prison sentence, on the hill now known as Montmartre overlooking city (where the basilica Sacre-Couer now stands, with perpetual adoration). The good bishop then picked up that same head, and walked several miles, preaching as he

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Newman the Kindly Prophet

Although he died on August 11th, this is the day the Church has chose to commemorate Blessed John Henry Cardinal Newman (+1890); for it was on October 9th, 1845 that the former Anglican minister, halfway through his earthly journey, finally convinced of the truths of Roman Catholicism, converted to the fullness of the Faith. He had spent years striving to find in Anglicanism a via media – a halfway house, if you will, between the low liturgy and stark beliefs of latitudinarianism – a kind of English Calvinism with stripped-down liturgy typified by Oliver Cromwell – and what many saw

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