Reclaiming the Faith: ND center in Ireland honors new saint

Author: Colleen Wilcox

Newman 2The entrance to the Newman University Church and the Notre Dame-Newman Centre for Faith and Reason in Dublin.

Steve Warner, a renowned expert in liturgical music, and Rev. William Dailey, C.S.C., are attempting to revive an urban Irish parish that faces the same challenges as modern Catholicism across the world. These challenges are impossible to miss in Ireland, which like other Western countries has seen a steep decline in Mass attendance and a corresponding rise in people who claim no religion. The hope is that top-notch music and preaching can act as a model of how to reignite the faith in this sacred place.

The center and church are named for the church’s founder, Blessed John Henry Newman, who will be canonized as a saint on Oct. 13.

The church opened in 1856 and has since been an iconic landmark in Dublin’s city center, a testament to Newman’s ambition to harmonize faith and reason. At the invitation of the Most Rev. Diarmuid Martin, archbishop of Dublin, Notre Dame agreed in 2016 to steward the historic church by establishing a center there designed to engage young professionals.

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