Symud i'r prif gynnwys

Roman Catholic Episcopacy in Wales from the Reformation to Queen Victoria The Roman Catholics in Wales during the recusant period were a small and dwindling constituency lacking strong leadership and with little formal organisation. They were not, however, without an episcopate and there has been a long line of bishops, either Welsh by birth or adoption, who have ministered to the Welsh Catholics since the Reformation. The line has not been unbroken and has not always been distinguished or even creditable but it has maintained an ecclesial connection, tenuous at times, between the wider church and its Welsh adherents. This paper looks at these bishops both as individuals and, perhaps more importantly, at their impact on the community they served. In the troubled and uncertain years of the Reformation Welsh prelates played an important role in the touch-and-go continuity of Welsh Catholicism. Three names come very readily to mind: Morys Clynnog, Owen Lewis, and Thomas Goldwell, all of whom have entries in the Dictionary of National Biography. Clynnog, a native of Carmarthenshire, and an alumnus of Christ Church, Oxford, was bishop-elect of Bangor (he had the unfortunate timing of being appointed in 1558, just before Mary Tudor's death) and was part of the Papal Commission of 1560 which was sent to ascertain Elizabeth's religious intentions. He was the author of a Welsh Catechism and a leading spokesman for an armed invasion of these islands to reimpose the Catholic faith.2 He died, drowned in the English Channel, in 1581. Clynnog was of the generation as were Lewis and Goldwell who saw the break with Rome as a temporary hitch and were probably less interested in a missionary drive to support those Welsh men and women who remained loyal to Rome than to get a political or military settlement. Owen Lewis [1532-94] was born in Anglesey and became scholar of Winchester College and fellow of New College, Oxford. Like SEEKING A BISHOP Dom Aidan Bellenger