Monday, 25 March 2013

Dean and Bishop of Winchester under Lancelot Andrewes

On the subject of Dean and Bishop of Winchester, it is interesting to note that a dispute over authority is nothing new. While safeguarding is the context of the withdrawal of the present Dean's commission, there is also the issue of authority; that's what makes the current business so very messy. Is it just about safeguarding, or is there also a hidden agenda of the new Bishop of Winchester using the problems over safeguarding to strengthen control over Jersey, and in particular, to revive an old dispute from the 17th century?

Now I'm not saying that the matter of safeguarding is not important or that an inquiry should not take place (and on this matter, see my blog posting, but what I am suggesting is that there may be more than one issue on hand, and the very public use of a document by a newly installed Bishop of Winchester may have political overtones. Matters may be more complex than they seem on the surface, just as almost certainly was the case with Graham Power and his suspension.

This extract comes from a book called "Lancelot Andrewes, 1555-1626." by Paul Welsby and details the last time the Bishop of Winchester tried to assert his primacy over the Crown appointment of the Dean:

The Bishop of Winchester and the Dean of Jersey
by Paul Welsby

After the accession of James I it became evident that the government was determined to introduce the Anglican system of Church government into Jersey. After an inquiry into the ecclesiastical affairs of Jersey, with particular reference to the appointment, jurisdiction, and revenues of a Dean, and to the provision of the Book of Common Prayer.

Ordinances were issued to the States in June 1618 to nominate three ministers from whom the King would choose a Dean.2 Sir Edward Conway, Secretary of State, endeavoured to have David Bardinell, a Jersey minister, nominated to the deanery, and in February 1619 the King established the ancient ecclesiastical authority, at the same time requesting that Bardinell should be preferred to the office of Dean, who was to be the ecclesiastical superior of the Island.

It was, however, a year before the actual appointment was made and the reason for the delay was that Bishop Andrewes made a stand for the rights of his See in the matter. The original idea had been that the appointment of Dean should be made by Royal Letters Patent, in virtue of an Ordinance of Henry VII, but Andrewes had discovered a record showing that after this Ordinance, Henry had followed the procedure of presenting a Dean to the Bishop of Coutances to be admitted by him.

The consequence of Andrewes's stand over this was that in 1620 James wrote to Andrewes, and also to the governor, bailiffs, Jurats, and people of Jersey, recalling that he had commanded that the Deans of Jersey should be made by Royal Letters Patent, but, as a doubt had arisen that such a course might be derogatory to the Bishops of Winchester, he reaffirmed his previous command and asserted that the right of nomination fell to the Crown, although he conceded that admission to office lay with the Bishop of Winchester.

Accordingly Bandinell was formally presented to Andrewes, from whom he received Institution and a Commission for the exercise of jurisdiction in the Island. "Poor Bardinell", wrote Sir William Bird, "has almost as many seals and instruments for his poor deanery as any bishop for a good bishopric in England." He was also given a letter from Andrewes and the Archbishop, in the King's name, to the Governor for such allowances as had hitherto belonged to his office, and on 15 April 1620 he was sworn in at an acrimonious meeting of the States of the Island.

The Dean proceeded to his two-fold task of reforming the ecclesiastical government of the Island and of inducing the ministers to use the Book of Common Prayer, both of which were disliked by the Islanders. Canons were prepared by the Dean and ministers and were presented to the Council, but they were opposed by the bailiff and jurats. The case was argued before Bishop Andrewes, together with the Bishop of Lincoln (Williams) and the Archbishop of Canterbury.

Revision was made of the draft Canons and the King ratified them under Sign Manual on 30 June 1623.7 These Canons regulated divine worship, the sacraments, the Dean, ministers, churchwardens, and clerks, the Church Courts, appeals and revenues, and they were uncompromisingly Anglican in substance. Two points are to be noted. All persons were required to accept the Prayer Book Service, and all ministers must receive episcopal ordination before they could be admitted to a benefice.

There is little doubt that Andrewes would have been a strong advocate of these Canons which aimed at approximating church order and worship in Jersey to that which prevailed in the rest of his diocese. Such documents as are available, however, do not give the impression that he was in any sense a driving force behind the measures or the events which led up to them.

H. B. Wilson went too far when he suggested that Andrewes "rested not till he procured the revival of the deanery in Jersey, and recovered that island to an entire conformity with the Church of England". On the contrary, he appears to have been content merely to look on with approval at what others were doing. But perhaps his approval was not altogether unqualified, for the Canons left the Bishop of Winchester, though nominally the Ordinary, with nothing but an appellate jurisdiction over cases heard in the Court of the Dean, who for all disciplinary purposes exercised the power of a bishop.


James said...

Which name is correct - Bardinell or Bandinell?

TonyTheProf said...

Bandinell is almost certainly the right name, but the quote is taken from an age when spelling of names was not as rigorous and set in stone as it is today.

A well know example is Shakespeare. "The spelling of William Shakespeare's name has varied over time. It was not consistently spelled any single way during his lifetime, in manuscript or in printed form. After his death the name was spelled variously by editors of his work and the spelling was not fixed until well into the 20th century." (Wiki)