Lost Voices of the Catholic Literary Revival
Lost Voices of the Catholic Literary Revival

In the English-speaking world, the Catholic Literary Revival is associated with the work of G. K. Chesterton, Evelyn Waugh, and Graham Greene: novels that chart the solitary figure of a priest or layman in spiritual combat with the world around him. But in fact, the Revival’s most numerous members were women, many of whom have been almost entirely forgotten. When these women are put back in the frame we need to adjust our understanding of the Revival’s nature and scope.

Julia Meszaros
Bonnie Lander Johnson
Julia Meszaros & Bonnie Lander Johnson
February 09, 2024
7 min
“Like a Slowly Moving Censer”: Learning to Read with Newman
“Like a Slowly Moving Censer”: Learning to Read with Newman

Compared to my usual diet of scholarly articles and books, Newman’s writings stood out for what appeared to me as their meandering character. Unlike most contemporary works, Newman does not state upfront what he is going to say and then take the reader through the motions of a demonstration delivered blow by blow. He begins, instead, with a puzzle, or a question, that he brings before his audience; he unfolds his thinking slowly, almost searchingly, from his initial questions; he also frequently refrains from tying up his argument, leaving whatever he said simply to “air” with the reader.

Sermons of a Saint: Newman’s Transformative Words
Meeting Newman in the Conversion of Bill Evans (1933–2017): A Review of Time to Delay No Longer
St. John Henry Newman’s Vision of Everyday Holiness
Grit: A Lesson for Today's Catholics
Grit: A Lesson for Today's Catholics

On 12 September 1830 Newman preached a sermon in the University Church entitled “Jeremiah, A Lesson for the Disappointed.” It has not, so far as I am aware, ever attracted a great deal of attention. Though it was later published in Parochial and Plain Sermons—“the most important publication not only of Newman’s Protestant days, but of his life,” as Owen Chadwick once averred—it had to wait til volume eight for inclusion: hardly typical of “The Very Best Of …” territory.

That is fitting in a way, however. For the whole topic of “Jeremiah, A Lesson for the Disappointed” is the fact of being overlooked, of deserving recognition but not getting it, of striving and failing—or rather, of seeming to fail.


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