A Welsh saint

One of the great things about writing here, is all the ‘friends’ you make, people who you will probably never meet but just feel very in touch with, and appreciate their comments and communication… Which leads me onto a man born four hundred years ago this year, in Abergavenny in Wales. His father was a headmaster,  Morgan Lewis who was a protestant, his mother, Margaret was a Catholic, and little David was the youngest of  nine children.

David Lewis went to Paris when he was sixteen, and there he assumed the faith of his mother and became a Catholic, a dangerous thing to do in those days. From Paris he went to Rome to study for the priesthood and assumed the name of Charles Baker, as many Catholics did at that perilous time. he became a priest in 1642, at the age of twenty-six, and three years later he became a Jesuit.

At some point he returned to Wales and he was arrested in 1678 for becoming a priest and for saying the Catholic mass. He was sent to London… and as with many priests and other Catholics he was sentenced to be hanged. He was sent back to Wales and died there in August 1679 when he was sixty-three years old. Other Welsh Catholic priests were executed or exiled, and he was the last Welsh Jesuit until 2001, by which time he had been canonised by Pope Paul VI. St David Lewis is also known as Tad y Tlodion, father of the poor.

The reason I was interested in this story isn’t because i am either a Catholic or Welsh, but one of my WordPress friends is also called David Lewis!


  1. David Lewis

    My brother died in February and I couldn’t come to terms with it and I never felt so alone in my life. Nerves are frayed and it came to a head last week. Had help and good advice from friends and wife. I thought I was a pretty tough outgoing sort without a care in the world but I hit a brick wall at the end of a dead end street. Coming to terms with my own mortality was one of the hardest problems I’ve faced.


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