Selection of Parochial & Plain Sermons

John Henry Newman

Edited by W. J. Copeland

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PPS1-5 Self-Denial the Test of Religious Earnestness (Advent)
PPS8-2 Divine Calls (Advent)
PPS4-20 The Ventures of Faith (Advent)
PPS4-22 Watching (Advent)
PPS8-17 Religious Joy (Christmas Day)
PPS7-1 The Lapse of Time (New Year's Sunday)
PPS5-6 Remembrance of Past Mercies (Epiphany)
PPS5-5 Equanimity (Epiphany)
PPS1-2 The Immortality of the Soul (Epiphany)
PPS1-26   Christian Manhood (Epiphany)
PPS5-16   Sincerity and Hypocrisy (Epiphany)
PPS5-9 Christian Sympathy (Epiphany)
PPS5-19 Present Blessings (Septuagesima)
PPS5-20 Endurance, the Christian's Portion (Sexagesima)
PPS5-23 Love, the One Thing Needful (Quinquagesima)
PPS4-6 The Individuality of the Soul (Lent)
PPS6-2 Lent, the Season of Repentance (Lent)
PPS3-11 Bodily Suffering (Lent)
PPS3-10 Tears of Christ at the Grave of Lazarus (Lent)
PPS6-4 Christ's Privations, a Meditation for Christians (Lent)
PPS6-7 The Cross of Christ the Measure of the World (Lent)
PPS7-10 The Crucifixion (Easter Day)
PPS4-23 Keeping Fast and Festival (Easter Tide)
PPS1-22 Witnesses of the Resurrection (Easter Tide)
PPS3-9 A Particular Providence as revealed in the Gospel (Easter Tide)
PPS4-17 Christ Manifested in Remembrance (Easter Tide)
PPS4-13 The Invisible World (Easter Tide)
PPS6-17 Waiting for Christ (Easter Tide)
PPS6-16 Warfare the Condition of Victory (Ascension)
PPS6-15 Rising with Christ (Sunday after Ascension)
PPS6-22 The Weapons of Saints (Whitsunday)
PPS4-19 The Mysteriousness of our Present Being (Trinity Sunday)
PPS1-1 Holiness Necessary for Future Blessedness (Sundays after Trinity)
PPS1-9 The Religious Use of Excited Feelings  (Sundays after Trinity)
PPS1-17 The Self-Wise Inquirer (Sundays after Trinity)
PPS1-25 Scripture a Record of Human Sorrow (Sundays after Trinity)
PPS2-28 The Danger of Riches (Sundays after Trinity)
PPS4-2 Obedience without Love, as instanced in the Character of Balaam  (Sundays after Trinity)
PPS4-3 Moral Consequences of Single Sins (Sundays after Trinity)
PPS4-14 The Greatness and Littleness of Human Life (Sundays after Trinity)
PPS4-15 Moral Effects of Communion with God (Sundays after Trinity)
PPS5-22 The Thought of God the Stay of the Soul (Sundays after Trinity)
PPS5-24 The Power of the Will (Sundays after Trinity)
PPS6-19 The Gospel Palaces (Sundays after Trinity)
PPS7-2 Religion a Weariness to the Natural Man (Sundays after Trinity)
PPS7-3 The World our Enemy (Sundays after Trinity)
PPS7-4 The Praise of Men (Sundays after Trinity)
PPS7-14 Religion Pleasant to the Religious (Sundays after Trinity)
PPS7-15 Mental Prayer (Sundays after Trinity)
PPS8-5 Curiosity a Temptation to Sin (Sundays after Trinity)
PPS8-6 Miracles no Remedy for Unbelief (Sundays after Trinity)
PPS8-9 Jeremiah, a Lesson for the Disappointed (Sundays after Trinity)
PPS8-16 The Shepherd of our Souls (Sundays after Trinity)
PPS8-11 Doing Glory to God in Pursuits of the World
(Sundays after Trinity)

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{v} THE present volume has for its design the publication in a convenient and inexpensive form, uniform with the rest, of a selection of about fifty from the "Parochial and Plain Sermons" of the Author; such as might be acceptable at once to those for whose benefit the Sermons were originally designed, and not unacceptable to others into whose hands the book might fall, in the interest of a common faith and love.

In the short Preface to the eight volumes mention was made of the effect of the Sermons "in bringing out the fundamental Articles of the Faith, and their bearing on the formation of the Christian character." It is well to state here that the choice made in the Selection has been made with special reference to that hearing.

The Author in his earliest work, the "History of the Arians," [Note 1] which preceded the first volume of the Sermons, while insisting on the duty of the Church to define and {vi} preserve the faith once delivered to it by the imposition of creeds, speaks of "the ministers of Christ" as "answerable for the formation of one, and one only, character in the heart of man."

This may be fairly called the keynote of his teaching. It seems to have been his great aim from the first, under a solemn sense of this responsibility, to trace on the heart, with rich variety of illustration, the features of that character, and to show, with deep study of our moral nature, and far-reaching sympathy, how faith on the basis of exact and definite doctrine energizes in enlarged and expansive love.

Such is the pervading spirit of the varied contents of the eight volumes, and it is matter of deep interest to note, in his later volume on "Subjects of the Day," the affecting terms in which the Author, amidst sad experience of the evils of disunion, reflects on "the abundant evidence which we have on all sides of us, that the division of Churches is the corruption of hearts." [Note 2]

It may be hoped that these remarks on the tone and tenor of the Sermons at large will go far in recommending such a Selection of them as from their bearing on the formation of the Christian character may best contribute to the promotion of mutual sympathy between estranged communions and alienated hearts. The Selection, therefore, is rather ethical than theological. It consists, with the exception of a few special sermons for the most important Days, mainly of such as, though not ranging strictly and methodically with the Calendar, will be found more or less adapted for reading in the Seasons as they pass.

In accordance with the principle on which the eight volumes were edited in 1868, the Sermons are unaltered, except by the substitution of the words "Holy Eucharist" for "the Lord’s Supper" in one place, and "Holy Communion" for "Communion Service" in another, these substituted terms, or the like, being used already in other sermons, and commending themselves to many into whose hands it is desirable that the volume should fall.

It only remains to say, with regard to the arrangement, that as there are very rarely more than six Sundays between the first Sunday in the New Year and Septuagesima, and very rarely six in Epiphany when there is a second Sunday after Christmas, the whole number, "six" before and after Epiphany, are placed under the general head "Epiphany;" and as the sermons after Trinity are confined to twenty­two, the six in Epiphany may be used though one may have been used before.

October 1878.
W. J. C.


1. First edition, p. 163.
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2. Sermon X.
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Newman Reader — Works of John Henry Newman
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