The Newman Cluster in Wolverhampton, Bilston, Darlaston, Willenhall and Wolverhampton had a fabulous first event to celebrate the canonisation of John Henry Newman with a full church to listen to Fr Guy Nicholls who really made the local connection between Newman and the Black Country. 

Newman's Sanctity by Fr Guy Nicholls (pdf)

Fr Craig Fullard said:

"He reminded us that whilst Newman was yes a Cardinal, yes he was a great Scholar and great thinker, and yes he did much in the world of education that we should never forget it was ‘Father Newman’ whose pastoral heart led him to our parish to serve the people of our cluster who were in need, despite his own very poor health at the time. 

"Newman visited Bilston during the second cholera outbreak and his love of God and the poor was central to his life and work and that’s why he is a saint also. 

"Fr Guy stated that he very much felt it was Blessed John Henry Newman’s hand guiding us as we move forward together in faith and love as the St John Henry Newman Cluster. 

"After the talk Fr Guy blessed four statues of Blessed J H Newman which will be placed in the four churches of the Cluster. 

"We then prayed  Evening Prayer and had a time of Adoration and Benediction using the hymns written by Newman. We ended by praying his prayer:

"May the Lord support us all the day long,
Till the shades lengthen and the evening comes,
and the busy world is hushed, and the fever of life is over,
and our work is done.
Then in his mercy may he give us a safe lodging,
and holy rest, and peace at the last.

"The team at St. Mary’s put on a splendid ‘spread’ afterwards whilst people mingled and reflected on what Fr Guy had said."