Personal Encounter with God

Dr. John Crosby, professor of philosophy at Franciscan University of Steubenville, delivered a lecture during the spring 2011 semester on “The Human Person as a World of His Own” at Franciscan University. It was the second in a series of five lectures by Dr. Crosby on “The Christian Personalism of Blessed John Henry Newman.”  In this lecture, Dr. Crosby discusses Newman’s understanding of the human person.  Citing a “really memorable expression of Newman’s,” Crosby says, “[The human person] has a depth within him unfathomable, an infinite abyss of existence, and the social scene in which he bears part is but for the moment, like a gleam of sunshine upon its surface…Newman proceeds to say that only in relation with God can all the affections of which we are capable awaken, even though this encounter with God is in the darkness of faith…if we only lived in relation to finite beings, we would never know how vast our heart is, nor suspect the infinite abyss of existence in it.”  We come to discover in ourselves a capax dei, a capacity for God, and so an infinity in our hearts.