Appeared in Vol. 2 No. 1
The famous Oxford Movement in the mid-19th century in England was a religious revival which aimed at bringing forth what its proponents believed to be the hidden Catholicity of the Anglican Church. At that time, Anglicanism was the established religion in England, and enjoyed many privileges under the government. At the same time, there was already a secular movement of disestablishment designed to despoil the Church and enrich the government. But there was also, especially within the Oxford Movement, a sense that the Church ought to be disestablished for religious reasons-to reveal the apostolic Anglican tradition which was neither controlled by nor subject to the State. John Henry Cardinal Newman, before his conversion, subscribed to this view. In the article that follows, John R. Grif n explores Newman’s Apologia Pro Vita Sua in which he described the religious climate of the day and the reasons for his conversion. in particular, Griffin analyzes Newman’s claim that John Keble, in a sermon titled National apostasy, originated the Oxford Movement, and gave Newman many of his own ideas about the apostolicity of the Anglican Church-ideas which retarded his conversion to Catholicism. Griffin’s argument reveals two things: Newman’s reliability as a commentator on religious affairs, which many scholars have denied, and the reasons for Newman’s long delay in leaving the Church of England.
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