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Monday, 29 January 2018

Yr eglwys a'r Gymraeg: 'Dechreuad' ond mwy i'w wneud


Andy John Bishop of Bangor                                               Source: BBC/Twitter


Another top job post has been created at the Church in Wales' expensive new HQ while ministry areas continue to scratch around for clergy and any help they can get if it is freely provided.

This time the bench of bishops require a Director of Welsh Language and Bilingual Mission to assist them having been negligent in ensuring that Welsh speaking bishops were appointed where appropriate. The diocese of St Davids is a glaring example where political correctness in appointing a woman bishop took precedence over all else.

Andy Pandy, as he is affectionately known in some quarters, gives his spin here on the need for a new post to promote Welsh within the Church in Wales which he says is "beginning" but there is more work to do.

Typically +Andy's account is in Welsh as if he has a vast Welsh speaking audience while Welsh speaking congregations are neglected. Certainly there is more work to do, starting with inadequate bishops engaged in empire building. Three dioceses have already come to readers' attention where the number of clergy is in stark contrast to priests out in the country dashing from church to church.

56 comments:

  1. Fantabulosa Faerie29 January 2018 at 14:38

    That's outrageous!
    +Crap needs to get his sh*t together toute suite.
    What about the hundreds of thousands of us poor neglected LGBTQIAAA+B-C2DE%$£&XYZ#* folk?
    We demand the immediate appointment of a Director of Polari (http://www.polari.org.uk/) Language and Metrosexual Mission as we are still entirely under-represented even in Llandaff.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You're still using 'B' - how do you think that makes us non-binary asexual people think? 'Bisexual' is such an outdated word, you bigot . . .

      Delete
    2. Fantabulosa Faerie29 January 2018 at 22:51

      Mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa.
      Did I miss U out and U, for unclassified and uncalssifiable?
      How is a girl supposed to remember it all?

      Delete
    3. Cymru'r Groes30 January 2018 at 00:50

      St Padarn's Institute is all inclusive and has introduced a new training module -Queer feminist fight club Femme Feral.
      https://www.facebook.com/VICE/videos/1908732052774168/
      Designed specifically with women and femme-identifying ordinands in mind, it caters to those who feel the need to let off a bit off steam and express their rage through some harmless dressing-up, role-play, body-slams and dropkicks.
      When rolled out to all the Misery Areas it will be known as "Sweaty Church".

      The Bishopettes have been booked to appear as a Tag team at the next session.

      Delete
  2. Talk about locking the stable door after the horse has bolted!

    Crap has presided over the decimation of Welsh-speaking clergy in the Diocese of Bangor for nearly a decade, and did not care a damn whether a parish had a competent Welsh-speaking priest or not. So we had Cyanide Sue in the Deanery (Welsh non-existent), preceded by Alun-two-faced-Hawkins (who used to outsource his sermons for translation at Diocesan expense). Key parishes were denied Welsh-speaking clergy (Holyhead, Llanfairfechan and Penmaenmawr, Conwy, Llangefni, Dolgellau, Maentwrog, to name but a few). Then there was a persistent exodus of our brightest Welsh-speaking clergy (some of whom had been high-achieving learners), including two archdeacons, five incumbents, a residentiary canon, a university chaplain and several curates. Not only were they a loss to the diocese; they left the Church in Wales to take up prestigious posts in the Church of England.

    And that's without serious scrutiny of Crap's flimsy grasp of Iath y Nefoedd, ably demonstrated a couple of weeks ago, as we all sat listening to him mix his mutations on Radio Cymru, whilst being evasive about his marital failures. Some of us have been around long enough to know that, until a couple of years ago, when the bullying allegations became impossible to ignore, Crap was enthusiastically colluding with the view of his nemesis in the Deanery that an emphasis on the Welsh language was 'exclusive.' Instead of showing some leadership, he allowed himself to 'sup with the enemy' - and woke up one morning to find a knife in his back.

    That this unprincipled and weak-willed excuse for a bishop is now responsible for promoting the Welsh language in the C in W is as pathetic as it is derisory. Little wonder we are becoming a declining irrelevance.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Not all left for 'prestigious posts in the Church of England'. At least one left ministry altogether, leaving wife and family in the vicarage. They were then evicted.

      Delete
    2. It's not all doom and gloom in Bangor.
      +Crap is bringing his new Praise team for next Sunday.
      https://www.facebook.com/wendell.parker.12/videos/10156550051850193/

      Delete
    3. evangelical Ed, I think you will find that the sad situation to which you refer happened on Barry the Golfer's watch, some years before Andy Crap got anywhere near Ty'r Esgob (the Golfer was quite adept at employing the services of M'Learned Friend - all at diocesan expense). I think Astounded is referring to the haemorrhaging of pastorally able, intellectually gifted clergy, who made a real difference to their parishes and other spheres of ministry, and are now to be found in places like St Albans, Leeds, Essex, Southwark, Salford, Surrey, Kent and France. And that is before we start counting a Dean we were glad to see the back of, and the mysterious disappearance of the Canon Theologian and the Archdeacon for Ministry. The last two departures being especially Putinesque.

      Now, all we have is a gaggle of 55+ year old women who came to North Wales with their primary school teaching pensions, and no intention of immersing themselves in the local culture by leaning to siarad Cymraeg,all sycophantically worshipping at the shrine of a clueless bishop, and being cheered along from her sofa by Car Crash Cathy, ably assisted by Bob the Builder and the Lavatory Attendant. I can tell you, the future's looking good in Bangor...!

      Delete
    4. No Bangor Bugle, this happened recently. The wife and four children have found a temporary home in the community they’d both moved to North Wales to serve.

      She was unceremoniously dumped by her husband and then shat on by her bishop, but the bishop’s wife got a part time job and a house.

      +Bangor should be ashamed of himself!

      Menai Drudge

      Delete
  3. The rot set in many decades ago in Esgobaeth Bangor - picking Bishops by telephone canvasing a la "he failed to get it last time" or "fair play, he's wont get another chance" etc etc to boy bishops that turned a sunday morning eisteddfod sermon into a pantomime that made even some RC's blush - No! As with President Trump, though on a mini mini-scale, the CinW system created not only Andypandy but also a bishop yn Nhy Ddewi who can only "spake one speak", as that old Welsh joke would have it. Duw a'm helpo ni ... or will it soon be 'Duwes'!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Welsh-speaking Englishman30 January 2018 at 00:45

    I learned Welsh while studying for ordination. As an Englishman I thought that the least I could do was to prepare for ministry in a bilingual province by learning the language and spent 8 weeks one summer in Lampeter on the "cwrs wlpan". I am reasonably fluent. Following the course I preached at the then Welsh language church in Aberdare and Dewi Sant in Cardiff. As a "foreigner" I was moved considerably by the reaction of even non-Welsh speaking Anglicans to the fact that I had taken steps to learn the language. Although they didn't speak Welsh, they were very proud that their parish priest COULD speak Welsh. At one point during my time in the Church in Wales I remember it being reported at a meeting that the "only way to get on" in the Church in Wales was to be able to communicate through the medium of Welsh. How many of the current bench of bishops can speak Welsh fluently and therefore minister to people for whom Welsh is their first language and who therefore find it easier to THINK in theological concepts in Welsh rather than in English. I remember the days when only ONE of the bench of bishops was unable to communicate through the ancient language of Wales. I think of my visits to a Welsh speaker in a hospital in south east Wales who had lost the use of English after a stroke but who was able to converse fully in Welsh. When I think back to the time I took to learn the language, I am so grateful that I did this even if was just to be able to minister to this one particular person in his own language as it made such a difference to him although he lived in a non Welsh-speaking area. When the Eisteddfod Genedlaethol came the area a few years ago, I was urged to go to the Church in Wales pavilion as often as I possibly could as there was only one other Welsh-speaking priest in the area. I even took part in one of the competitions in the Pavilion!

    ReplyDelete
  5. Let those speak Welsh who wish to (a minority in the Province today). I fail to see that it is an essential requirement for a bishop in Wales.
    Bob

    ReplyDelete
  6. Gwyn from Gwalchmai30 January 2018 at 14:16

    Welsh-Speaking Englishman speaks eloquently and passionately about the fundamental importance of the Welsh language in pastoral ministry (in contrast to the mindless superficiality of 'Bob'). As the last-but-one Archdeacon of Bangor used to say, being able to minister to people in Welsh is not a matter of cultural superiority; it is a fundamental expression of the Gospel for people who think and pray in their mother tongue. Contrast that with the aggressive Cymrophobia of Cyanide Sue and her gang, who would endlessly whinge about 'servant' ministry, whilst ensuring that the diocese 'served' their needs and ends - and no-one else's.

    If the Bishops of the Church in Wales cannot speak to the broad spectrum of Welsh life, and are unable to speak in the public sphere through the medium of Welsh, they are failing in one of the primary tasks of mission. As we speak, a rumour is going around that, in the whole of Wales, they cannot find a single bishop (serving or retired) whose Welsh is of a sufficient standard to conduct a confirmation service in Eglwys Dewi Sant, Cardiff. I suppose 'Bob' would say 'So what: they can all understand English.' No relation of Cyanide Sue, I suppose?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It matters little to me what language they speak if the thieving bastards are still dipping their hands into the collection plate to sustain the unaudited "discretionary" fund in LLandaff.

      Delete
  7. Bob - some time ago I posed the question through this blog asking if anyone knew of a single bishop through the entire provinces of Canterbury and York who could not speak English.
    I still await an answer.
    If fluency in the English language is essential to perform an episcopal ministry in England then by the same token fluency in the Welsh language is essential in the province of Wales.
    Your views belong to a darker and less enlightened age.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Inexact analogy. You aren't watching closely enough, dear Watchman. Most Welshmen speak English, and seem satisfied with it. I don't need to insult you. Your arguments are not convincing. Let those in the Welsh heartlands be catered for. Leave the rest of us alone.
    Bob

    ReplyDelete
  9. Not an analogy Bob nor inexact either but a direct contrast which illustrates the malaise at the heart of he Church in Wales. Not being content with destroying the Christian faith in Wales the bench zitters and their acolytes seek also to infect our language and culture.
    You are not a product of St. Michael's College are you?

    ReplyDelete
  10. Dear Watchman,
    In fairness to the bench of bishops in Barry Morgan's time, there were efforts to promote the Welsh language. Some of us thought then that they were overdone.
    I do not understand how the current bench seeks to infect 'our language and culture'.
    I have nothing derogatory to say about the Welsh language: nothing whatsoever. Long may you continue to delight in it and use it. However, most Welsh people use English as their main tongue. It is the attempt to foist upon us a language we do not use that some of us object to. I simply think you must recognise that.
    By the way, you do not change the meaning of 'analogy' or any word simply by a brazen denial.
    Bob

    ReplyDelete
  11. I think you are shameless and disgusting. You obviously have a major problem with clergy, women and gay people. I thought Jesus said love one another. This entire website is full of negativity and hate. Shame on you for calling yourselves “Christian”.

    ReplyDelete
  12. In all charity Bob, you both excel and exceed yourself in your last post. In your efforts to divide our nation you would be an absolute gift to the bench zitters.
    I understand that there is a vacancy for the post of Archdeacon in Andy Crap's diocese of Bangarai. Have you thought of submitting an application for the vacancy? You would find it both cleansing and enlightening and if you play your cards right you may even be rewarded with a brand new residence worth half a million pounds far from the Cathedral. It's happened before !

    ReplyDelete
  13. Dear Watchman,
    Sadly you are an incorrigible insulter, while refusing to face what you find to be unwelcome facts. You are also poor at even responding to argument, let alone meeting it.
    I have no wish to return insults however, either about you or the Welsh language. Long may you continue to be proud of it. Even so, please do not thrust it down the throats of English-speaking, English-loving Welsh men and women.
    To return to the original blog: so long as Welsh-speaking parts of Wales are given Welsh-speaking bishops it should not be de rigueur for bishops in the more densely populated south. Why? because like it or not, English is the first language for most people there.
    Bob

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Bob,

      How do you define Welsh speaking parts of Wales? Given that about 30% of welsh speakers are in South East Wales - a minority, but significant, nonetheless. Across Wales about 45% of 16-19 year olds speak welsh and 50% of 3-15 year olds as well, which means that our younger generations may very well require more services in their mother tongue. Admittedly the % of welsh speakers plummet as you get older... I do not think it is a case of forcing anything down the throat of anyone, but actually providing spiritual care for people in their language of choice. Also considering that the constitution of the Church in Wales gives equal status to both languages, it's a moot point.

      Good day.

      Delete
  14. http://www.liverpoolcathedral.org.uk/43/section.aspx/37/we_announce_the_8_dean_of_liverpool

    Cyanide Sue gets top job in the Anglican church as Dean of Liverpool. The Diocese of Bangor is so shocked, everyone has gone for a collective lie-down in a darkened room.

    Menai Drudge

    ReplyDelete
  15. Quote from the Bishop of Liverpool:

    'Liverpool Cathedral is in good shape. I am impressed by its clear vision and sense of collegiality amongst clergy, staff and volunteers as they seek to serve the city, region and diocese. Sue wholeheartedly supports that vision and will be working to cement its reputation and build its ministry.”

    It is in good shape now! Let's just hope she manages to reign in her spiteful side.

    Hilariously, having left Bangor under something of a cloud, she must must be laughing up one sleeve whilst flicking a massive two-fingered salute to +Andy Crap and his band of merry men.


    Menai Drudge

    ReplyDelete
  16. Pondering Pastor, I read the Liverpool announcement, with some interest after comments on this blog. There appears to be glowing acclamation from her current Bishop and diocese. So, what appears to be the issue here? If she is such a gifted priest, what is all the fuss.

    ReplyDelete
  17. Nom de plum
    For how many of those groups you quoted is Welsh the primary language, which they use at home, in work, among friends? After the attempts to promote the language in schools, it would be unusual if young people had not picked up as much as '0' level French.
    Bob

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  18. Gifted priest?

    Hahahaha!

    She is one of the nastiest, most aggressive people on the planet. With all the charm and charism of a mouldy Welsh cake.

    Sparks will almost certainly fly at Liverpool but we should be far enough from the fall-out zone here in Wales.

    Menai Drudge

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  19. Fear Not, as we speak people are contacting the Bishop Liverpool and the Liverpool Safeguarding Team with stories of bullying. I also felt duty-bound to bring various posts on this blog to the attention of the virgers, musicians and others who will, perforce, bear the brunt of her (allegedly) damaged personality. It will all end in tears, of course. The pressures will mount, the aggression will go up a gear, and the complaints will come flooding in. The truth always outs. As in Bangor so in Liverpool. Watch this space.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Surely the debate here shouldn't be about the Welsh language, rather the top heavy nature and hubris of the Bench. The Parishes are struggling to pay parish share, many of which no longer have full time clergy; yet more and more well paid jobs, advising Bishops are being created. Bishops are being flown to Rome for "unity week". All while mission and growth at Parish level are ignored as Clergy tear around doing endless funerals, and lay people struggle to fund raise.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Danny.
      As mentioned in the introduction, comments for publication should be 'on topic' and not involve third parties. 'Anonymous' comments without a pen name are not published.

      Delete
  21. Menai Drudge, how come she lands a plumb job like Liverpool. If she was that bad surely her tenure in Bangor would have doomed her rise. Pondering Pastor.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. For crying out loud PP, shit floats to the top just as well in the CofE as it does in the CinW.

      Delete
    2. Ken from Porthmadog1 February 2018 at 09:54

      Cyanide Sue in Liverpool. Well. Let's see. My instinct is to say 'sit back and watch the the whole bang shooting match go up in flames.' Someone with her pathology cannot play Ms Nice Gal for ever and ever (as she seems to have done in Derby for two-and-a-bit years - while doubtless doing her best to impress Mrs Bishop of Derby who is the Archbishop of Canterbury's Senior Appointments guru). How long before a young verger gets bullied, followed by the odd organist, not to mention a sweet old lady in the visits department. Just watch it happen. It won't take long.

      Meanwhile, I wonder if Andy Crap wrote her a positive reference for this job, like he did for Derby. He should watch out. He might survive one knife in the back. But two?

      Delete
    3. Those of us who sang in the choir will not quickly forget her ugly and confrontational behaviour. She never could look you in the eye, and is adept at hiding behind her status. Bullying is unacceptable, but is usually a consequence of low self-esteem. She was very good at choosing her victims. She never attracted trust and respect simply because she seemed incapable of practising what she preached.

      Delete
    4. That sounds just like Peggy the Pilate in Llandaff.
      Do the sisterhood attend the same finishing school?

      Delete
    5. I notice that a distinguished former cathedral Dean in the Church of England has been reflecting on this latest enquiry into how cathedrals are run. Spotting a loophole in the report's proposals, he asks:

      'If (God forbid!) a cathedral ever suffered under a mad, wicked or incompetent dean, who, in the absence of the council (for which this is one of its statutory functions), would petition the bishop to instigate a process for his or her removal?'

      There's a question for the Bishops of Bangor and Llandaff - as much as Liverpool!

      Delete
  22. PP, Dear me, no effort to offend LG. Some posts came in after my response. If she is that bad enough said.

    Back to the bilingual issue. Being CiW, surely it is not unreasonable for at least one Bishop to speak Welsh fluently enough to conduct services, sacraments and ceremonies in the Province? But this new role, or should I say expensive role? Should not one of the 6 or one of the Deans take on this role, with some remuneration commensurate. Then there are the two new Archdeacon posts in Bangor, and one in Monmouth. Add the stipends and the salaries of the new posts plus the new office costs and what do you have?

    Surely this will indeed affect Parish share to some degree. What happened to Stewardship, has this only been aimed at the parishes, hopefully not.

    So many good ideas come out of this blog, some a little heated admittedly, but valid all the same.

    Back to the language issue,it was notrd that one new member of the bench was learning welsh, lets be honest, that is to be commended, whatever view one may have. But maybe a percentage should be applied to how many clergy speak fluently the language, and act accordingly. Also as a public body the church does have to subject itself to the law, the welsh language act and the scrutiny of the welsh language commissioner. So English is fine, but the mother tongue has to be in its rightful place too.

    ReplyDelete
  23. Of course, but in those areas where Welsh is the main language, not otherwise.

    Bob

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Good of you to insist on linguistic ghettos, Bob. I wonder where your idea came from? Warsaw, perhaps?

      Delete
    2. Hi Bob,
      What? Like Pontcanna? Or any of the welsh medium schools where c.25% of our children are educated (the other 75% having to learn Welsh as a second language as part if the curriculum).
      Again, as both languages are given equal status according to the constitution, it doesn’t really matter if you think we shouldn’t proclaim the Gospel in Welsh, in all parts of Wales, we are obliged to do so. The Anglican church in Wales has a long history of Welsh language provision dating back to 1567 when the BCP was translated into Welsh and again in 1664 (I think), when the 1662 BCP was translated into Welsh.

      Welsh language liturgy and it’s provision has been around for pretty much as long as Anglicanism has. Long may it continue throughout this land, especially if it is a medium for sharing the Gospel, our reason for being.

      Good day.

      Delete
    3. Muddled Priorities1 February 2018 at 13:10

      @Bob & Plum

      Your disagreement over the merits or otherwise of Welsh are moot.

      The body of the Church in Wales is writhing in its death throes and gasping it's last breaths.
      It is morally bankrupt and a complete irrelevance to over 99% of the Welsh population, regardless of their language preferences.
      The faithful who now find themselves housebound don't receive visits or their Communion.
      The faithful who find themselves in Hospital don't receive visits or their Communion.
      Vast numbers of Churches don't even open just once a week for any Sunday services, never mind the offices of the day.
      The Cathedral is crumbling but it's business as usual squandering £1000s on office supplies.

      But there's always money for new Penthouse offices, there's always money for Bishop's jollies to Rome and time and energy to argue over Welsh.

      Delete
    4. Can't take much more.1 February 2018 at 14:36

      Muddled Priorities. Do not tar all the clergy with the same brush. Many visit the housebound faithfully and visit parishioners. Many ensure that the sick are visited in home and hospital and that the bereaved are cared for both before and after funerals. Look closer at those promoting their gimmicks in church. Food with everything, the ones shouting look at me and what I'm doing. Loyal , faithful hardworking clergy can be found all over but don't shout about it. They just get on quietly and diligently with what's needed. As I said at the beginning, don't tar them all with the same brush.

      Delete
    5. Muddled Priorities2 February 2018 at 09:45

      I'm not tarring anybody with anything - that wouldn't be politically correct would it?
      We all know some Parish Priests who are working their socks off and themselves into an early grave but we all know plenty who are doing very little and plenty of Parishes that are fortunate to see a member of the clergy once a month.
      One of the mainstays of ministry at the coalface was knowing your flock and having the time to get around them, including the ones who lived in the are but didn't go to Church.
      The Parish system had not, and has not, become outdated.
      All that has changed is the ability, or rather the lack of it, of the Church in Wales to fill its vacant posts, thanks in no small part to the arch deceiver Barry Morgan and his ilk.
      By all means speak as you find "Can't take much more" but then permit me to do likewise.
      The experiences I described above are being endured by my housebound or hospitalised friends and family in different parts of the Llandaff diocese even as I write and it's nothing less than a complete bloody disgrace.

      Delete
  24. I fear that few of you are facing reality. Welsh has had its day as the language spoken by most people in Wales. You may wish it were otherwise, but that is the situation. Most Welsh people use English as their first and natural language.
    Let those who wish to continue to speak Welsh do so, and let there be priests who do so also, but I fail to see that is an ESSENTIAL requirement for all the bishops of the Church in Wales. Adherence to the Christian Gospel is, however.
    Bob

    ReplyDelete
  25. Poor Bob. He just doesn't get it. What 'reality' are we talking about? The ability to speak Welsh is part of faithfulness to the Gospel, especially in a society that afford equal status to both languages - and people do their business with God in Welsh as their most authentic means of self-expression. Cyanide Sue doesn't get that, either. The only alternative is a shameless imperialism that dictates cultural norms and where brute force wins every time. A far cry from 'adherence to the Gospel', Bob.

    ReplyDelete
  26. 'Go ye, therefore, and teach all nations, baptising them' etc. using Welsh and other languages to do so, yet the language is not the Gospel: the Gospel is! That is where we differ.
    Bob

    ReplyDelete
  27. Bob, a word to the wise: stop digging. You're making yourself look completely ridiculous with every post.

    ReplyDelete
  28. Equal status for both languages thats the core emphasis in Church law. But in our multicultural cities, do priests need polish, Lithuanian,urdu or manderin?As we do have expressions of congregations. Surely the most important aspect is that Jesus Christ be praised and the Gospel taught in whatever language is appropriate at the time in whatever setting Pondering Pastor.

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  29. Exactly! Cardiff's RC community has long had one or two Polish priests to minister to them. But not Polish for everyone. Must their bishops be Welsh speakers? I confess, I don't know.
    Rob

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    Replies
    1. At least two RC Bishops in recent times became fluent in the Welsh language Bob. Bishops Mullins and Reagan are held in the highest regard.

      Delete
  30. It is quite absurd to suggest that there is a parallel between minority languages spoken by immigrants (Chinese, Polish and the rest) and the native tongue of the Welsh people, even if it is spoken only by very few as their first language. In a barbaric age the Church has an important role as a guardian of civilisation - think of the so-called 'dark ages', which in an era dominated by uncultured demagogues such as the blond-wigged thug in the Washington White House seem to be returning with alarming velocity. Donald Allchin - a priest with not an ounce of Welsh blood in his veins - thought it worth his while to learn the language so as to get to know the complete corpus of Welsh religious poetry from the 13th century Black Book of Carmarthen to Euros Bowen and other contemporary writers, and through his books enriched the spirituality of a generation. Among the material he brought to the attention of a wider public were the hymns of Pantycelyn and Ann Griffiths, with their ecstatic language and deep theological insights - and without which we would be infinitely the poorer. Should we be happy with a Welsh Church led by bishops unable even to read these significant texts, let alone understand and expound them?

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  31. Far more important to know the Gospels, I think.
    Bob

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  32. Stop drilling Bob. You are becoming a bore.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. North Walians wail;English prevails: the choice of the Welsh people.
      Jack Union

      Delete
  33. Interesting to see a number of Welsh vacancies and resignations in the Church Times, for Wales, one diocese in particular. PP.

    ReplyDelete