Poem: “The Sign of the Cross”

crucifixionThe Sign of the Cross

Whenever across this sinful flesh of mine
I draw the Holy Sign,
All good thoughts stir within me, and renew
Their slumbering strength divine;
Till there springs up a courage high and true
To suffer and to do.

And who shall say, but hateful spirits around,
For their brief hour unbound,
Shudder to see, and wail their overthrow?
While on far heathen ground
Some lonely Saint hails the fresh odor, though
Its source he cannot know.

John Henry Newman

Blessed John Henry Newman was born in London, the eldest of three sons and three daughters. He became an evangelical Oxford academic and priest in the Anglican Church of England. In 1845, Newman was received into the Roman Catholic Church. He founded the Catholic University of Ireland which later became the University College, Dublin.  Newman died on August 11th, 1890 of pneumonia at the Birmingham Oratory. At the time of his death, he had been Protodeacon of the Holy Roman Church. The Protodeacon is the longest-serving Cardinal Deacon in the College of Cardinals. Newman was beatified on September 19th, 2010