27 September 2010

A new shrine in the works...

We've started plans for a Shrine to Blessed John Henry Newman, which will be located in the baptistry at Our Lady of the Atonement Church.  We have commissioned a full-length oil painting depicting him during the time he was a Cardinal.  The painting will be five feet high, and slightly less than three feet wide.  It will be placed within a specially designed niche, surmounted by a large spire, and will match the existing shrine to the Virgin Mary and Child already in the baptistry (see pictures below).

Incorporated within the shrine will be a second class relic, which is a small piece of a cope which belonged to Blessed John Henry Newman.  There are no first class relics available.  In fact, when an attempt was made to move his remains to the Birmingham Oratory, upon opening his grave it was found that there was nothing left of his body.  The coffin had not been lead-lined, and the cemetery was in very damp land.  Indeed, we're fortunate to have even this relic.

As the shrine progresses, I'll post updates.  I'm very happy that we will have this center of devotion to a great Anglican convert and faithful son of the Church, now raised to Her altars.