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This week in Christian history: Anabaptists form, Soviet Union, Oxford Movement ends

This week in Christian history: Anabaptists form, Soviet Union, Oxford Movement ends

John Newman releases last pro-Catholic tract – January 25, 1841

A portrait of John Henry Newman (1801-1890), influential churchman who led the Oxford Movement in the Church of England and later became a cardinal-deacon in the Roman Catholic Church. |

This week marks the anniversary of when John Henry Newman, noted Anglican Church intellectual who eventually converted to Catholicism, issued the controversial Tract 90.

The document, the last in a series known as “Tracts for the Times,” examined the Thirty-Nine Articles of the Church of England and argued that they had more in common with Roman Catholicism than the rest of Protestant Christianity.

Controversy over the Catholic comparison led to the shutting down of the Oxford Movement, a pro-Catholic movement within the Church of England that Newman led, and Newman moving away from the University of Oxford.

“I was denounced as a traitor who had laid his train and was detected in the very act of firing it against the time-honoured Establishment,” Newman later wrote.

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