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Lloyd George in No. 10

16 December 2016

December 15th, 1916.

MR LLOYD GEORGE, besides becoming Prime Minister, becomes also dispenser of high ecclesiastical preferments. Lord Salisbury and Mr Gladstone, as Churchmen, took a strong personal interest in their task of nomination to bishoprics, and, on the whole, were fortunate in their selections. The late Prime Minister made his selections on a principle of his own, the exact nature of which it is not easy to perceive. But Mr Lloyd George is frankly a Dissenter, and, as such, cannot be expected to know who are the fittest ecclesiastics for the Crown to nominate, nor to have much interest in the matter. It would be among the ironies of his position if, during his term of office, a Welsh bishopric fell vacant and he had to advise the Crown. The position is strange and disturbing, and his first appointment to high office in the Church will be awaited with anxiety. Possibly he will prefer to act upon the advice of others, rather than risk being charged with showing bias. The situation that has now arisen is a disagreeable result of a system which, so long as Prime Ministers are sincere Churchmen, works fairly satisfactorily, but is fraught with danger in circumstances like the present.


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