J. Curl (2002b);
A. S. Gray (1985);
Hague & and Hague (1986);
Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (2004)
A leader in the English seminary movement; b. Blanscough Hall, Wigam, 1549; d. Biddulph Hall, Staffordshire, 1627. He was born of a staunchly Catholic Lancashire family, educated at Oxford and Douai College, and ordained in 1577. He departed for the English mission the following year. He was captured in 1584 and banished from the realm in 1585. For the next 28 years his main work was the English seminary in Reims and Douai. In 1589 he was named vice president of Douai and in 1599 succeeded Richard Barrett there as the third president. Despite a praiseworthy administration, he was plagued with ever-present financial difficulties, declining student morale, and the unfortunate quarrels that divided the English clergy during these years. In 1613 Dr. Worthington was summoned to Rome, and Matthew Kellison succeeded him as president. By 1616 he was again on the mission, working in London and Staffordshire, where he organized a sodality or association among his fellow priests for their mutual spiritual comfort and financial assistance. He was the author of several controversial and devotional works and did many of the annotations of the Douai Old Testament.
Bibliography: p. guilday, The English Catholic Refugees on the Continent (London 1914). t. fitzherbert, Letters, ed. l. hicks, Publications of the Catholic Record Society 41 (London 1948).
[t. h. clancy]