The Original Oratory on Bigelow Blvd
The Oratory Today. Completed in 1996
Three branches of the Oratory: The Fathers of the Congregation, The Adults and Families of the Secular Oratory and the Students of the Newman Center
The Pittsburgh Oratory was founded with a close connection in mind to Newman’s idea of a University and the ethos of his Oxford aspirations. Even so, campus ministry is not exclusively the work of Oratorians. Most Oratories administer parishes, and do so in large urban areas such as Toronto, London, Vienna, and Rome. Yet, all have programs dedicated to the spiritual, intellectual and personal formation of college students and youth, a consistent echo of St. Philip Neri’s pastoral care for the youth in turbulent sixteenth-century Rome. The Pittsburgh Oratory likewise promotes and fosters the spiritual growth and maturation of all – including adults and families – who find in St. Philip Neri, Bl. John Henry Newman, and their spiritual path, an example and help in fulfilling their own personal call to holiness and apostleship. The devotions, disciplines, programs, and fellowships that follow naturally from this goal of, “sharing all things in common,” generates a distinctive Oratorian communitas – both a common joy in the manifold gifts of the Spirit, as well as a common task and responsibility to act in and from these gifts as salt and light in our ecclesial, social, and academic spheres. This larger “community” formed around the life of the priests of the Congregation of the Oratory is often referred to as the “Secular Oratory”. Everyone who attends the Oratory for any of its sacramental, devotional, or educational activities is welcome to take part in and even register formally as a member of the Secular Oratory. Although these sorts of activities and this sort of community may resemble that of many parishes, nonetheless, The Oratory is not a parish.