...thoughts turn to Maryvale, which was his home when he left Littlemore to start a new chapter of his life.
Today Maryvale offers a wonderful opportunity to study the Faith and to become an evangelist. We can't all be as effective as Newman - but we can certainly open up our minds and hearts, and share the good news of the Gospel.
There's a lot of talk today about the Church needing missionary disciples. Maryvale is where you can get trained to become just that.
There is a great range of courses - all done by distance-learning, something which Maryvale has been doing for years and is, of course, exactly tuned for this Coronavirus time. You can do a training course in Youth Ministry. There are courses for parish catechists. Or you can get an Ecclesiastical Licence empowering you for a leadership position in a Catholic school. Some of the courses obviously require good academic qualifications.: there's a course starting in January on Philosophy in the Catholic Tradition...
Maryvale itself is a fine old house set in its own grounds not far from Birmingham. One of the most delightful things about attending a course usually is the hospitality and welcome of the house. Like many other students over the years, I have had the privilege of using the room that Newman used while he lived there - with its small hidden window looking on to the chapel, where he knelt to pray..
But Maryvale isn't just a place, it's a real community and a superb experience, with wonderful tutors.
If you are feeling dead-end coronavirus-ish...click on to the website and plan for something new. This is a good time to commit to a new project and a new challenge - with a real and practical usefulness to the Church's mission, which in our poor country has never been more urgent...