Bishop, William

(c.1553-1624) First episcopal superior in England after the extinction of the hierarchy, born Brailes, Warwickshire, England. About 1574 he joined Dorctor Allen at Douai, and subsequently completed his studies at Rome, returning to the English mission. In 1598 he went to Rome on behalf of the secular clergy in connection with the "archpriest controversy"; his views were unfavorably received and for some time he was forbidden to return to England. When the injunction was withdrawn he returned, and soon after he drew up the famous "Protestation of Allegiance" to Elizabeth, which was violently denounced by his opponents. In 1623 he was named titular Bishop of Chalcedon and Vicar Apostolic of England. He organized a system of church government throughout the country, establishing a chapter of 24 canons to assume jurisdiction during any vacancy of the vicariate.

New Catholic Dictionary

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