The beatification and canonization of someone who lived in modern times makes a silly spectacle. John Henry Newman was a talented polemicist; and given his effect on thoughtful, but somewhat weedy, young men, he must have been a charismatic figure in his way. But do you believe he worked the requisite miracles? Do you think he's specially able to intercede for you with The Virgin Mary, this author of the novels Loss and Gain and Callista?
I suspect that if we had known St Francis or St Jude or St Patrick the way men within our memory knew Newman--that is, as someone to argue politics with over a beer--we'd find their sainthood equally preposterous. Who is playing advocatus diaboli in the canonization process? Has he spoken to Chuck Kingsley and Matt Arnold yet?