Celebrating 125 Years of Penn Newman

Serving the University of Pennsylvania since 1893

Our Mission

We are an apostolic Catholic community entrusted to Mary, working with the Penn university community to live a full Christian Life by generating spaces of prayer, encounter, reconciliation and service, from one heart to another.


History: Birth of the Newman Movement

Nothing would be done at all if one waited until one could do it so well that no one could find fault with it.
— Cardinal John Henry Newman

It was in 1893 that Timothy Harrington, a graduate medical student at the University of Pennsylvania, together with John J. Gilbride, James J. Walsh and his brother Joseph met with Father Garvey, pastor of St. James Parish, to explore ways of providing students with an ongoing enrichment of Catholic faith. The fruit of their work was the establishment of the Newman Club and eventually the Newman Apostolate, a recognized ministry within the Catholic Church. Newman Centers take their name from John Henry Cardinal Newman, the 19th century theologian whose insights placed theology at the heart of the university experience.

Penn Newman provides all Catholic students with the opportunity to:

– experience excellent liturgy, thereby enriching their life of faith;

– engage in spiritual formation;

– acquire theological education;

– attain archdiocesan certification (e.g. in liturgical ministries and as lay leaders).

Newman Centers are critical to the maintenance of values and integrity in the education of future leaders, especially in secular institutions. Leaders with integrity, compassion, and a strong ethical sensibility will always be in short supply and greatly needed and demanded. The Newman Center at the University of Pennsylvania has served, does serve, and will continue to serve as a training ground to nurture and cultivate such talent.


Authentic community is an essential aspect of the "Heart to Heart" spirituality inspired by John Henry Newman. We all look for true love and long-lasting friendship. Far from being a mere club or group of people with common interests, the Newman Community strives to be an example, a shining light on Penn's campus, of the true communion and inter-personal unity which has its foundation not in us, but in God himself. 

It is in community that our love finds its unique and proper expression.

"Thus community becomes "Schola Amoris," a School of Love, for young people and for adults -- a school in which all learn to love God, to love the brothers and sisters with whom they live, and to love humanity, which is in great need of God's mercy and of fraternal solidarity." **

If you are looking for opportunities to meet young men and women who form part of this community, we have a number of activities for you to attend!


Newman Dinners

Newman Dinners are held each Thursday night at 6pm in the lower level of Newman. A $5 all you can eat chicken parm meal fills the house. And freshmen eat free!


Newman Nights

Several times throughout the semester, immediately following Newman Dinner, we have a variety of faith-based discussions upstairs, ranging hosting international speakers, to discussions on current topics, and more. 


After Mass Socials

FREE Jimmy Johns luncheon after every 11:30am Mass!



Did you know we sponsor a men and women's household? Live communally with intention with your peers.


And more...

We dine together, study together, pray together, celebrate together, and are in this together. We loft our couches for our Souper-bowl Party Blow Out, we're open 24-7 during Finals Week, we throw BBQ Picnics, water balloon fights, indoor laser tag, paintball outings, and beach days. Join our Listserv for updates on all special activities.

** Fraternal Life In Community, 25