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Church in Wales

Church in Wales. The Church in Wales as an autonomous province within the Anglican Communion came into being in 1920, when, on 31 March, the Act of 1914 disestablishing the Church of England in the principality came into force. The four ancient Welsh dioceses of Bangor, St Asaph, St David's, and Llandaff became a self-governing church, with the bishop of St Asaph, Alfred George Edwards, as the first archbishop of Wales. The 1914 Act, among other provisions, deprived the Welsh bishops of their seats in the House of Lords, and abolished private patronage. All endowments given to the church before 1662 were taken from it. Since 1920 there has been no established church in Wales; legally, all denominations have equal status. The Anglican church in Wales elects its own bishops, and manages its own affairs through an elected governing body of clergy and laity, and a representative body in which its property, including church buildings, is vested. The Disestablishment Act had been vehemently opposed by many—but not all—Anglicans in Wales, but was supported by the majority of free churchmen.

Revd Dr John R. Guy

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