Tuesday, September 18, 2007

The Free Church of The Welsh: Nine

The episode of the Free Church of the Welsh left deep scars in the Merseyside Welsh Community. However, the new denomination did not last long. Formed as a protest against a perceived injustice, the new church had no specific doctrinal basis on which to base a coninued witness. If it stood for anything, it was for the rights of individual congregations over and against the machinery of a connexion. Attempts to expand into Wales met with no lasting success. A fellowship was established in Carmarthen in March of 1902, but did not last.

By early 1920, as the long drift away from religion began, the Free Church of the Welsh was in talks about unity with the local Quarterly Meeting of the Union of Welsh Independents. By 1921, the Free Church of the Welsh had merged with the Independents and the denominational magazine had ceased publication. Both W. O. Jones and his right hand man, became Independent ministers, Jones dying in May of 1937 in the post of minister of Canning Street Independent Church. He was describes as a man of 'gentlemanly spirit and [...] culture.' His turbulent past was very much behind him.



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