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Where Have we Come From? Minimize

Meath and Kildare - where have we come from? In 1976, the Dioceses of Meath and Kildare were united (Kildare Diocese having for the previous century and a quarter been united with the neighbouring Dioceses of Dublin and Glendalough), but Meath and Kildare each have impressive histories stretching back to the early centuries of Christianity. Made up a number of the oldest dioceses in the early Irish Church including Kells, Clonard and Duleek, the Diocese of Meath was one of the Cuig Cuige in ancient Ireland and was a province in its own right. The Boyne valley in the centre of Meath Diocese features centrally in the mission of St Patrick to Ireland. (Newgrange, one of the most significant pre-Christian religious sites in Europe, is part of the tourist trail to this day.)

Clonmacnoise was one of the monastic centres of the country, set at the place where the ancient east-west road across the country met the River Shannon running south. It remains very much part of the spiritual life of the Dioceses. Kells in the Diocese of Meath has given its name to the greatest illuminated manuscript of the Irish Church - the Book of Kells.   Kildare was the setting of the ministry of St Brigid. Indeed Kildare was one of the few places where, in the early centuries of the Christian faith in Ireland, the bishop was under the firm jurisdiction of a woman! Kildare has also a fine Cathedral - St Brigid's Cathedral, mediaeval in origin and fully restored in the late nineteenth century with a further major restoration at the end of the twentieth century. Proud as we rightly are of our past, the Christian Gospel is also about the present and what Jesus Christ wills for us today..       

Bishops of Meath Minimize

Bishops of Meath and Kildare

1976 Donald Arthur Richard Caird (Dublin 1985) 1985 Walton Newcombe Francis Empey (Dublin 1996) 1996 Richard Lionel Clarke

By act of the General Synod of the Church of Ireland in 1976, Meath was transferred from the Province of Armagh to Dublin. Kildare diocese was separated from Dublin and Glendalough and the new Diocese of Meath and Kildare was formed.

Bishops of Meath

1152 Eleutherius O’Meehan 1174 Eugene 1194 Simon de Rochfort 1224 Sedates (not consecrated) 1227 Ralph le Petit 1232 Richard de la Corner (Nangle) 1250 Geoffrey Cusack 1255 Hugh de Taghmon 1287 Thomas St Leger 1321 John O’Carroll (Cashel 1327) 1327 William de Paul 1350 William St Lefer 1353 Nicholas Allen 1369 Stephen de Valle 1380 William Andrew 1386 Alexander Petit 1402 Robert Mountain 1413 Edward Dantsey 1430 William Hadsor 1434 William Silk 1450 Edward Ouldhall 1460 William Sherwood 1483 John Payn 1507 William Rokeby (Dublin 1512) 1512 Hugh Inge (Dublin 1523) 1523 Richard Wilson 1530 Edward Staples 1554 William Walsh (deposed 1560) 1563 Hugh Brady 1584 Thomas Jones 1605 Roger Dod 1611George Montgomery 1621 James Ussher (Armagh 1625) 1625 Anthony Martin 1660 Henry Leslie 1661 Henry Jones 1682 Anthony Dopping 1705 William Moreton 1716 John Evans 1724 Henry Downes (Derry 1627) 1727 Ralph Lambert 1732 Welbore Ellis 1734 Arthur Price (Cashel 1744) 1744 Henry Maule 1758 William Carmichael 1765 Richard Peacocke 1765 Arthur Smyth (Dublin 1766) 1766 Henry Maxwell 1798 Thomas Lewis O’Byrne 1823 Nathaniel Alexander 1840 Charles Dickenson 1842 Edward Adderly Stopford 1850 Thomas Stewart Townsend 1852 James Henderson Singer 1866 Samuel Singer 1876 William Connyngham Plunkett (Dublin 1885) 1885 Charles Parsons Reichel 1894 Joseph Ferguson Peacocke (Dublin 1897) 1919 Benjamin John Plunkett 1926 Thomas Gibson George Collins 1927 John Orr 1938 William Hardy Holmes 1945 James McCann (Armagh 1958) 1958 Robert Bonsall Pike


Bishops of Kildare

1152 Finn O’Gorman 1177 Nehemiah 1206 Cornelius MacGelain 1223 Ralph of Bristol 1232 John of Taunton 1258 Simon of Kilkenny 1280 Nicholas Cusack 1300 Nicholas Calf 1333 Richard Howlot 1353 Thomas Giffard 1366 Robert of Aketone 1404 John Madock 1431 William Edward 1449 Geoffrey Atherford 1464 Richard Lang 1474 David 1475 James Wal 1475 Edward Audley (Rochester 1480) 1480 Edward Lane 1526 Thomas Dillon 1529 Walter Wellesley 1540 William Maigh 1550 Thomas Lancaster (deposed 1555) 1555 Thomas Leverous (deposed 1560) 1564 Robert Dale (Daly) 1583 Daniel or Donnell O’NNeilan 1604 William Pilsworth 1636 Robert Usher 1644 William Gilborne 1661 Thomas Price (Cashel 1667) 1679 Anthony Dopping (Meath 1682) 1682 William Moreton (Meath 1705) 1705 Welbore Ellis (Meath 1732) 1731 Charles Cobbe (Dublin 1743) 1743 George Stone (Derry 1745) 1745 Thomas Fletcher 1761 Richard Robinson (Armagh 1765) 1765 Charles Jackson 1790 George Lewis Jones 1804 Charles Lindsay On his death, in 1846, Kildare Diocese was united with Dublin, in accordance with the Church Temporalities Act of 1833 1846 Richard Whately 1864 Richard Chenevix Trench 1885 William Connyngham Plunket 1897 Joseph Ferguson Peacocke 1915 John Henry Bernard 1919 Charles Frederick D’Arcy (Armagh 1920) 1920 John Allen Gregg (Armagh 1939) 1939 Arthur William Barton 1956 George Otto Simms (Armagh 1968) 1968 Alan Alexander Buchanan


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