Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Deacon Keith Fournier

7/29/2010 (4 years ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

The communion of saints is real. The prayers of the Saints are efficacious.In fact, they can - and do- produce miracles.

I rejoiced when the "Congregation for the Causes of Saints" confirmed the miracle attributed to Cardinal John Henry Newman, the healing of a severe spinal disorder suffered by Deacon Jack Sullivan from the Archdiocese of Boston. I identify with Deacon Jack for several reasons. I was born and raised in Boston, I love his plain spoken manner, I believe in miracles, I am a great admirer of Cardinal Newman, I am a deacon and I believe that this trip to the United Kingdom by Benedict, the Pope of Christian Unity, is prophetic. 

Deacon Jack Sullivan Reads the Gospel and preaches at the Newman Oratory.

Deacon Jack Sullivan Reads the Gospel and preaches at the Newman Oratory.

Highlights

By Deacon Keith Fournier

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

7/29/2010 (4 years ago)

Published in Living Faith


CHESAPEAKE, VA (Catholic Online) - Because of my deep admiration for John Henry Cardinal Newman, and my conviction that the move of our Anglican friends into the full communion of the Church is a part of a prophetic plan for the coming full communion of Christ's Church, I follow with great interest the visit of Pope Benedict XVI to the United Kingdom. I have also followed the cause of John Henry Cardinal Newman. He is one of my heroes!

I rejoiced when the "Congregation for the Causes of Saints" confirmed the miracle attributed to Cardinal John Henry Newman, the healing of a severe spinal disorder suffered by Deacon Jack Sullivan from the Archdiocese of Boston. I identify with Deacon Jack for several reasons. I was born and raised in Boston, I love his plain spoken manner, I believe in miracles, I am a great admirer of Cardinal Newman, I am a deacon and I believe that this trip to the United Kingdom by Benedict, the Pope of Christian Unity, is prophetic. 

In speaking of the miracle Deacon Sullivan told the London Times: "If it wasn't for Cardinal Newman's intercession it would have been virtually impossible to complete my diaconate formation and be ordained for the Archdiocese of Boston...Nor would I have been able to continue in my chosen profession as a magistrate in our court system to support my family." He explained that he  has developed "a very deep sense of the reality of God's love for each one of us, especially during times of immense difficulties and suffering....I have developed a very real relationship with Cardinal Newman in frequent prayer and I try to pass on what marvelous gifts I have received to those I meet."

The approval of the miracle constituted the final step before Pope Benedict XVI could proceed with the beatification of the beloved Anglican convert and British Cardinal. One more miracle will be required in the process leading to canonization. I have no doubt it will occur. I believe that Cardinal Newman's prayers have been a part of the historic movement which led to the Anglican Ordinariates and the release of the Apostolic Constitution. 

John "Jack" Sullivan, 70, is a brother deacon and fellow lawyer.In his experience of the power og God manifested through the prayers of His Saints, I find great hope.He experienced a miracle assisted through the intercessory prayer of John Henry Cardinal Newman. He shared his story at Arnold Hall Conference Center. In years past, before my ordination, I attended several retreats there with Opus Dei. However, Opus Dei has no place for Deacons.

It seems that when the founder of "the work" (the popular term for Opus Dei) my lawyer friend (St Escriva was a lawyer) and inspiration, founded the work, there were no permanent deacons. So, my ordination fifteen years ago was a crossroads concerning my participation in Opus Dei. Perhaps some day the leaders of the work will reconsider the role of Deacons. I know that their founder has a great place in his heart for them. After all, he is still alive in Christ, a part of that great cloud of witnesses, the communion of Saints. I know this is true because he is one of my greatest intercessors and teachers.

My good friend of many years, Fr C John McCloskey III, a Newman scholar, had hosted a series of programs for EWTN on Cardinal Newman in 2000. At the end of the program wherin Father CJ interviewed  Fr Ian Ker, a  Newman biographer from Oxford, he put a message on the television screen that read: "If you receive any favors from Cardinal Newman, please contact the Birmingham Oratory in England." The Oratory is where Newman lived and died. 

Jack Sullivan, not yet ordained, was watching EWTN that night. He prayed and asked for the intercession of the good Cardinal. He had been in formation to be ordained to the Order of Deacon for the Archdiocese of Boston. He had just finished his second year. However, he had experienced a terrible injury which threatened his fulfilling his vocation. He had awakened one day with intense pain in his legs, nearly unable to even walk.  

He went to Jordan Hospital in Plymouth where a CAT scan disclosed that five vertebrae were squeezing his spinal cord and creating a bulge. He was told that he might soon be paralyzed. When the specialist physician at Brigham and Women's Hospital reviewed his case upon referral they said it was the worst back issue they had reviewed in 17 years. He was advised to undergo surgery.

This was a problem for this man who, like me, had a call to ordination. He was advised to forget resuming his studies for the diaconate. He knew he could not do so. That night while watching EWTN he prayed. Here are the words he remembers: "Please, Cardinal Newman, intercede with God so that I might go back to classes and be ordained."  Well, the good cardinal is a powerful intercessor in the communion of Saints. The next day, Jack felt no pain and could walk without difficulty. Another specialist at New England Baptist Hospital said the surgery was not necessary. He resumed his studies. 

The story does not end there. He finished his third year of studies. But in 2001 the intense pain returned. He was unable to walk and confined to a wheelchair. The Doctors finally performed surgery in August of 2001. It was followed by serious complications. The protective membrane around Jack's spine ruptured. The prognosis was bleak.

Jack Sullivan again called on Cardinal Newman to pray for him. It was then that he experienced what he called an experience of heat, a tingling sensation and wonderful peace which came upon him. After about ten minutes he stood straight up and walked without a cane or any pain. He contacted Fr. CJ McLoskey, a man of deep faith. He was encouraged to believe that the Lord had intervened through the intercession of John Henry Cardinal Newman.

In fact, that was precisely  what had happened. The communion of saints is real! The prayers of the Saints are efficacious.In fact, they can - and do- produce miracles.

On September 14 2002, Jack was ordained as a member of the Clergy of the Catholic Church, a Deacon. He walks a mile and a half every day. He now has no restrictions. The miracle was closely scrutinized with testimony from 10 witnesses. It faced the strong review of panels of medical experts and theologians. Finally it was recognized by the Vatican's Congregation for the Causes of Saints and by Pope Benedict XVI. It is the real deal. Praise God!

Deacon Jack Sullivan will have the honor of proclaiming the Gospel at Cofton Park Birmingham on Sunday, September 19, 2010 where Pope Benedict XVI will preside and beatify John Henry Cardinal Newman. This will be the first beatification by Pope Benedict XVI since he was elected Pope in April 2005. Normally the Cardinal of the Diocese presides over a beatification. Over 1,000 priests will concelebrate and help with the distribution of Holy Communion. Four deacons will assist; one will be Deacon Jack Sullivan. He will stand up straight, freed from the debilitating injury through the intercession John Henry Cardinal Newman, and proclaim the Gospel.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copywriter 2015 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for June 2015
Universal:
That immigrants and refugees may find welcome and respect in the countries to which they come.
Evangelization: That the personal encounter with Jesus may arouse in many young people the desire to offer their own lives in priesthood or consecrated life.


Rosaries, Crosses, Prayer Cards and more... by Catholic Shopping .com


Comments


More Living Faith

Remembering another great encyclical!

Image of

By Tony Magliano

While Pope Francis' new encyclical Laudato, Si' is enjoying wide publicity, few people are aware this year marks the 20th anniversary of another powerfully prophetic social justice and peace encyclical: Evangelium Vitae ("The Gospel of Life"). Trying to awaken the ... continue reading


Italy's 'incorruptible' preserved saints remain displayed in churches to be honored Watch

Image of

By Linky C. (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Several incorruptible bodies of saints remain to displayed to be honored around several churches in Italy. These haunting images bring a different kind of eerie to the tourist and locals who are visiting these churches. Some of these saints are in a fragmented state, ... continue reading


Amazing beautiful ancient mosaic church floor found under courtyard of current church Watch

Image of

By Atarah Haely (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Archaeologists have discovered an ancient decorated mosaic floor of an ancient church, underneath its modern incarnation, during an excavation. The Christian mosaic is believed to be about 1,700-years-old and part of the old Byzantine church of the fourth century. ... continue reading


Former 'Accountant of Auschwitz' asks God for forgiveness during trial facing 300,000 counts of accessory to murder Watch

Image of Oscar Groening,

By Linky C. (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Former Auschwitz guard, Oscar Groening has asked for God's forgiveness after serving Austchwitz during his testimony in court, last Wednesday. The 94-year-old worked for Austchwitz when he was just 13 and later became the "Accountant of Auschwitz." MUNTINLUPA, ... continue reading


U.S. archbishops express excitement over pending papal visit Watch

Image of After visiting Cuba, the Pope will visit three major cities on the U.S. east coast - Washington, D.C., New York, and Philadelphia - and the respective bishops of those cities were indeed jubilant.

By Matt Hadro (CNA/EWTN News)

Looking forward to Pope Francis' September visit to the U.S., the nation's bishops were exuberant on Tuesday, as the itinerary for the apostolic voyage was released. Washington D.C. (CNA/EWTN News) - Fewer than three months before the scheduled visit, Archbishop ... continue reading


Pope Francis to meet with president, prisoners and homeless during U.S. visit Watch

Image of Pope Francis will celebrate Mass at Madison Square Garden and preside over a vespers service at the newly spruced-up St. Patrick's Cathedral.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Pope Francis' visit to both the United States and Cuba will be hectic. In addition to meeting with political officials in both countries, the Pontiff will meet with prisoners at the Curran-Fromhold Correctional Facility in Philadelphia and the homeless at the ... continue reading


Learning from Elijah: Shipwreck, Struggle and the Broom Tree

Image of Elijah under the broom tree

By Deacon Keith Fournier

There are lessons that can only be learned under the broom tree. The lesson St Paul gave to the early Christians in Greece about the reality of being shipwrecked and experiencing daily struggles in life is critical in our age. God is searching for men and ... continue reading


Head of Russian Orthodox Church to meet with Pope Francis to repair rift between branches Watch

Image of Patriarch Kirill of Moscow is a Russian Orthodox bishop. He became Patriarch of Moscow and all Rus' and Primate of the Russian Orthodox Church in February of 2009.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

It is definitely going to happen -- but where and when has yet to be decided. The head of the Russian Orthodox Church and Pope Francis have agreed to meet in an attempt to repair the major rift between the Eastern and Western branches of Christianity. LOS ... continue reading


Pope Francis explains the nature of faith - the whole Gospel is written in its light Watch

Image of Francis lamented that

By CNA/EWTN News

The Pope focused on the virtue of faith during his Sunday Angelus address, saying the whole gospel is written in its light. VATICAN CITY (CNA/EWTN News) - "Faith is this: to touch Jesus and to draw from him the grace which saves," Pope Francis explained June 28 at ... continue reading


Pope Francis admonishes archbishops to be convinced by what themselves teach Watch

Image of The Pope added that, in being witnesses to the faith, archbishops should practice what they preach.

By CNA/EWTN News

During his Mass for the feast of Saints Peter and Paul on Monday, Pope Francis called on the Church's new archbishops to be courageous witnesses who are not ashamed of Christ, and who are convinced by what they themselves teach. VATICAN CITY (CNA/EWTN News) - ... continue reading


All Living Faith News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Genesis 28:10-22
10 Jacob left Beersheba and set out for ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 91:1-2, 3-4, 14-15
1 You who live in the secret place of Elyon, spend ... Read More

Gospel, Matthew 9:18-26
18 While he was speaking to them, suddenly one of the ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for July 6th, 2015 Image

St. Maria Goretti
July 6: Born in Corinaldo, Ancona, Italy, on October 16 1890; her ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter