Influence of Ex Corde Ecclesiae and St John Henry Newman on Catholic education today

An international webinar hosted by The University of Notre Dame Australia.

The University of Notre Dame Australia will host an international webinar on Friday, 9 October – the Feast Day of St John Henry Newman – with guest presenters in Australia and internationally – reflecting on the inspiration of Newman’s Idea of a University from which the founders of the University of Notre Dame Australia took their inspiration.

The discussion will also acknowledge the 30th anniversary of the promulgation of St John Paul II’s apostolic constitution Ex Corde Ecclesdaie which also drew inspiration from Newman’s writings.

The presenters, including the Archbishop of Sydney, Most Rev Fisher OP will look at the relevance of Newman’s 1852 Idea of a University on Catholic education today.

Vice Chancellor Professor Francis Campbell will facilitate the webinar. Other presenters will be Sister Professor Isabell Naumann, ISSM, President of the Catholic Institute of Sydney; Fr George Bowen, Chaplain, The London Oratory School; Dr Jacob Phillips. Director of the Institute of Theology at St Mary’s University, Twickenham, London and Monsignor Friedrich Bechina FSO, undersecretary of the Vatican’s Congregation for Catholic Education.

Anyone can register for the webinar by clicking here.

The webinar will begin at 5.00pm AEST or 2.00pm WAST. It will run for approximately one hour and 45 minutes including a question and answer at the end of the 15 minute presentation by the speakers.

“What our University founders saw in Newman’s Idea of a University was a commitment to intellectual inquiry which remains at the heart of our educational philosophy today as we encourage our university community to foster learning, discovery, meaning and the pursuit of truth and universal knowledge, ” Prof Campbell said.

John Henry Newman spent the first half of his life as an Anglican and the second half as a Roman Catholic, being ordained a Catholic priest in Rome in 1847.

He was named a Cardinal in 1879 taking as his motto “Cor ad cor loquitur”-“Heart speaks to heart.”

Although considered a controversial figure, Newman was regarded by many as the 19th-century’s most important English-speaking Roman Catholic theologian. An historian and poet, he has been called the “absent Father of Vatican II” because his writings on conscience, religious liberty, Scripture, the vocation of lay people, the relation of Church and State, and other topics were extremely influential in the shaping of the Council’s documents.

Newman was beatified in 2010 by Pope Benedict XVI and canonised by Pope Francis in October 2019.

/University Public Release. View in full here.