Faith and reason are like two wings on which the human spirit rises to the contemplation of truth.” – St. John Paul II

Lexington – The Newman Foundation, Inc. (NFI), which has been serving the Catholic community at the University of Kentucky since 1969, is now expanding its ministry to all secular colleges and universities in the Diocese of Lexington. This work will transpire in coordination with the Diocesan Office of Youth and Young Adult Ministry.

NFI is a non-profit organization that seeks to deepen and integrate personal, spiritual, and intellectual development through the Newman Apostolate by partnering with local communities to bring to tuition good works within the Diocese of Lexington.

“Outreach to students during their formative years in college, when major life decisions are being made, is a critical ministry of the church,” said Bishop John Store, O.F.M. Conv. “I would love to have more resources to support the work that many parishes are doing to have a Catholic presence on college and university campuses, and I welcome the Newman Foundation, Inc.’s interest in helping enhance this ministry.”

The Newman Apostolate is named after Cardinal John Henry Newman, who sought to bridge the divide between Catholicism and the scientific and social changes of the late 19th Century industrialization. Today, NFI promotes the Newman Apostolate by fostering Catholic intellectualism for students, faculty, staff, and parishioners at secular universities. This ministry is essential to Catholic teaching, which insists that faith and reason agree.

One of NFI’s contributions to the mission of the Newman Apostolate has been its Grants Program, which supports the importance of carrying Catholicism into the community. NLI will work in collaboration with campus ministers throughout the diocese to identify how to best serve the mission of the Newman Apostolate. By bringing people into contact with each other, they may discover the true meaning of “cor ad cor loquitur,” or “heart speaks to heart.” NFI seeks to provide students with opportunities and experiences to put their faith into action, engage in ministry, and develop meaningful relationships with God and God’s people.

Another way NFI fulfills its mission of  enriching the spiritual development of students is through its Distinguished Speakers’ Program. Since 1984, this lecture series invites nationally recognized speakers to discuss subjects that integrate the religious and intellectual spheres. One of these speakers is designated as the Father Elmer Moore Memorial speaker, and addresses topics such as the foundations of moral theology, essential meanings of the incarnation, and the mystery of Three Persons in One God. Fr. Moore was the founding pastor of Holy Spirit Parish, the first “college campus parish” in the U.S.

In addition to its regular programming, NFI supports special initiatives. For example, the Cottrill-Rolffes Chair of Catholic Studies at the University of Kentucky was established in 2005 thanks to a $2 million fundraising campaign led by NFI. As a result, the University of Kentucky Catholic community, as well as the entire university, have access to religious speakers and unique coursework.

NFI is excited to expand its mission beyond Lexington to better serve the Newman presence at non-Catholic colleges and universities within the diocese. To learn more about our mission, history, grants, or to contact the Foundation please visit www.newmanfnd.org; or e-mail newmandirector@gmail.com.