- Archbishop of Wales
The Province of
Walesin the Anglican Communionwas created in 1920, as the Church in Wales, independent from the Church of England(of which the four Welsh dioceses had previously been part). Unlike the Archbishops of Canterbury and York -- who are appointed by the Queen upon the advice of the Prime Minister -- the Archbishop of Wales is one of the six diocesan bishops of Wales, elected to hold this office in addition to his own diocese.
The establishment of a separate province and archbishopric was an indirect consequence of the Disestablishment of the Church of England in Wales (voted by Parliament in 1914 but implemented in 1920). Precedents for this development were sought by some in the early Celtic Church with a debatable pre-eminence of
St. Davids. A Roman Catholic archbishopric of Cardiff had been created in 1916. The circulating character of the post was justified by Welsh geography and by the ecclesiastical precedent of the province of Numidia (of which St. Augustine of Hippohad been a bishop).
Successive archbishops have not only represented different geographical areas but also different tendencies within Anglicanism. In the mid- twentieth century lingustic issues were prominent in the successive incumbencies of
Edwin Morris(who spoke no Welsh) and of Glyn Simon(who sympathised with advocates of the use of the Welsh language). Morris in some ways represented the broad churchmanship characteristic of the first occupant of the newly created post, Alfred Edwards, whereas Simon in many respects inherited the Anglo-Catholic outlook of the second archbishop, Charles Alfred Howell Green(but without his authoritarianism). Towards the end of his period in office Gwilym Williams was one of three leading Welsh figures in a deputation to guarantee the status of the language which had been challenged by Margaret Thatcher. He was also decisive in the decision to ordain women priests. The present Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr. Rowan Williams, held the post as Bishop of Monmouth.
The current Archbishop of Wales is The Most Rev Dr Barry Morgan, who signs 'Barry Cambrensis'.
Archbishops of Wales
Alfred George Edwards( Bishop of St Asaph) 1920-1934
Charles Alfred Howell Green( Bishop of Bangor) 1934-1944
David Lewis Prosser( Bishop of St David's) 1944-1949
*John Morgan (
Bishop of Llandaff) 1949-1957
Edwin Morris( Bishop of Monmouth) 1957-1967
William Glyn Hughes Simon( Bishop of Llandaff) 1968-1971
Gwilym Owen Williams( Bishop of Bangor) 1971-1982
Derrick Greenslade Childs( Bishop of Monmouth) 1983-1986
George Noakes( Bishop of St David's) 1987-1991
Alwyn Rice Jones( Bishop of St Asaph) 1991-1999
Rowan Williams( Bishop of Monmouth) 1999-2002 (became Archbishop of Canterburyin the Church of Englandin 2002)
Barry Morgan( Bishop of Llandaff) 2002-
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