Jack Sullivan, the American Permanent Deacon, who was miraculously cured of a serious spinal disorder through the intercession of Cardinal Newman, in August 2001, has accepted an invitation from Archbishop Vincent Nichols, President of the Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales, to visit London, Birmingham and Oxford, during November.
Deacon Sullivan, aged 70, will be accompanied by his wife Carol for the six-day official visit from Monday 9 to Saturday 14 November, during which time he will have an opportunity to visit places connected with the life of the Venerable John Henry Cardinal Newman (1801-1890).
The approval of the miracle of Jack Sullivan’s healing by the Vatican Congregation for the Causes of Saints, on 2 June this year, has cleared the way for the beatification of John Henry Newman. The Papal Decree was promulgated by Pope Benedict XVI, a month later on 3 July.
During their time in England Deacon Sullivan and his wife will visit Littlemore, near Oxford, where Newman was received into the Catholic Church by Blessed Dominic Barberi, an Italian Passionist priest, on 9 October 1845.
During the afternoon of Monday 9 November, Deacon Sullivan will give a press conference at Archbishop’s House, Westminster, chaired by the Archbishop of Westminster.
Afterwards, Archbishop Vincent Nichols will be the principal celebrant at the 5.30 pm Sung Mass in Westminster Cathedral, the Feast of the Dedication of the Lateran Basilica - the Pope’s Cathedral in Rome, that represents every Catholic Church and chapel in the world.
Archbishop Nichols has invited Deacon Sullivan to be deacon at the Mass and also to preach the homily.
Archbishop Vincent Nichols, said: “I am delighted to welcome Deacon Jack Sullivan to this country. His presence and testimony will help us to understand more deeply the power of prayer and the importance of intercession to those who can pray for us in the presence of God.
The Archbishop of Westminster, added: “I look forward to this celebration of Mass in Westminster Cathedral during which we thank God for the life and witness of Cardinal Newman and the gift of this miracle.”
Catholic Truth Society Lecture
Jack Sullivan will give the Catholic Truth Society Lecture 2009, at 6 pm on 10 November, at a venue in central London yet to be confirmed. During the lecture Jack Sullivan will talk frankly about his illness, his devotion to Cardinal Newman, his intercession to Cardinal Newman and his miraculous cure that took place in Boston on 15 August 2001, the Feast of the Assumption. He will also answer questions from members of the audience.