Newman Cause reaches new phase

 The evidence into an alleged miraculous cure through the intercession of the Venerable John Henry Cardinal Newman, in the Archdiocese of Boston, Massachusetts, USA, has now been sent to the Congregation for the Causes of Saints in Rome. The Roman Postulator of the Cause, Dr Andrea Ambrosi, was assigned by the Boston Tribunal as the official carrier of the package of documents, containing two copies of the Process. He flew from Boston to Rome, and handed over the package to officials at the Vatican Congregation on Tuesday 14 November. The package, containing the sworn testimonies and the medical evidence into the healing of Jack Sullivan, a 68-year old deacon, from Marshfield, in the Archdiocese of Boston, was sealed during the Closing Session of the Diocesan Tribunal, on Thursday 9 November. The package was wrapped in brown paper, tied with red ribbon and secured with the wax seal of Cardinal Sean O'Malley, Archbishop of Boston. The final two and a half hour, closed session took place at the tribunal office situated in the Convent of St Teresa of Avila, in West Roxbury, about eight miles south west of Boston. Those present at the meeting included Bishop Walter J Edyvean, an auxiliary bishop of Boston; Mgr Mark Mahoney, Judicial Vicar of the Archdiocese, and other members of the Diocesan Tribunal. Bishop Edyvean, who has responsibility for the western region of the Archdiocese, also represented Cardinal O'Malley at the Opening Session of the Tribunal on Saturday 25 June 2005. Also present for the Closing Session were the Roman Postulator, Dr Andrea Ambrosi, and Fr Paul Chavasse, Provost of the Birmingham Oratory (founded by Cardinal Newman in 1848), in his capacity as Actor Causae (Actor of the Cause) for the Beatification and Canonisation of Cardinal Newman. The Actor has overall responsibility for introducing and overseeing the progress of the Cause. At the start of the meeting Mgr Mahoney reminded the members of the tribunal about their oath of secrecy surrounding the proceedings. The session consisted of the signing and the sealing of the documents, of which a third copy has been retained in the archives of the Archdiocese of Boston. The Closing of the Tribunal took place on the Feast of the Dedication of the Lateran Basilica the Cathedral of Pope Benedict XVI in Rome the Mother Church of Christendom. Fr Chavasse, said: "It was extremely fitting that the Closing Session of the Tribunal took place on this particular feast. In his own day Cardinal Newman was a great defender of the Catholic Church and the Papacy, and his life and writings are increasingly seen as of enormous significance for the mission of the Universal Church today." Fr Chavasse added: "It was very moving to be privileged to actually seal the package of documents with the hot red wax and so witness the ending of this particular chapter in the history of the Cause."

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