Thomas Smith (21 March 1763 – 30 July 1831) was an English Roman Catholic bishop who served as the Vicar Apostolic of the Northern District from 1821 to 1831.
The Catholic Church, also known as the Roman Catholic Church, is the largest Christian church, with approximately 1.3 billion baptised Catholics worldwide as of 2016. As the world's "oldest continuously functioning international institution", it has played a prominent role in the history and development of Western civilisation. The church is headed by the Bishop of Rome, known as the Pope. Its central administration, the Holy See, is in the Vatican City, an enclave within the city of Rome in Italy.
He was born on 21 March 1763, the son of James Smith of the Brooms, near Lanchester, County Durham.At the age of thirteen, he was sent to Sedgley Park School, Wolverhampton, where he became proficient in Latin and French. From there he went to the English College, Douai, where he was made procurator at the age of twenty-one. Smith was ordained to the priesthood in 1788 by Louis-François-Marc Hilaire de Conzié, Bishop of Arras.
Lanchester is a village and civil parish in County Durham, England, and was in the former district of Derwentside (1975–2009). It is 8 miles (13 km) to the west of the city of Durham and 5 miles (8 km) from the former steel town of Consett, and has a population of slightly more than 4,000 measured at the 2011 Census as 4,054.
Sedgley Park School was a Roman Catholic Academy located on the outskirts of Wolverhampton, then part of Staffordshire. The school was founded by William Errington, at the request of Bishop Richard Challoner, on 25 March 1763.
The English College, was a Catholic seminary in Douai, now in France, associated with the University of Douai. It was established in about 1561, and was suppressed in 1793. It is known for a Bible translation referred to as the Douay–Rheims Bible. Of over 300 priests from Douai sent on the English mission, about one-third were executed. The dissolution of the college at the tie of the French Revolution led to the founding of Crook Hall and St Edmund's College, Ware. It is popularly believed that the indemnification funds paid by the French for the seizure of Douai's property were diverted by the British commissioners to complete the furnishings of George IV's Royal Pavilion at Brighton.
At the time of the French Revolution, Smith was a Professor of Philosophy. He and his students were imprisoned for about sixteen months before being released. It was then Smith's responsibility to see that the students returned safely to their parents. In March 1795, the motley group arrived at the Blue Boar in Holburn wearing an assortment of cast-off clothes given them by the soldiers, Smith himself sporting sailor's jacket. The landlady was reluctant to receive them until she saw the nobility and gentry rise to congratulate them on their return.
Upon the death of the Rev. John Lodge in November of that year, Smith succeeded to the mission at Durham.
He was appointed coadjutor to William Gibson, Vicar Apostolic of the Northern District; the Briefs for the coadjutorship and titular see of Bolina were dated on 15 May 1807.However, the mandate for his consecration was lost in transmission to England, and a fresh mandate was applied for in July 1808. He was consecrated titular bishop of Bolina at St. Edmund's College, Ware by Bishop William Poynter on 10 March 1810, attended by bishops Gibson and Collingridge as co-consecrators. On the death of Bishop Gibson on 2 June 1821, Bishop Smith automatically succeeded as Vicar Apostolic of the Northern District.
A coadjutor bishop is a bishop in the Catholic, Anglican, and (historically) Eastern Orthodox churches whose main role is to assist the diocesan bishop in the administration of the diocese. The coadjutor is a bishop himself, although he is also appointed as vicar general. The coadjutor bishop is, however, given authority beyond that ordinarily given to the vicar general, making him co-head of the diocese in all but ceremonial precedence. In modern times, the coadjutor automatically succeeds the diocesan bishop upon the latter's retirement, removal, or death.
William Gibson was an English Roman Catholic prelate. He was president of the English College, Douai from 1781 to 1790, and later became a bishop, serving as the Vicar Apostolic of the Northern District from 1790 to 1821.
A papal brief is a formal document emanating from the Pope, in a somewhat simpler and more modern form than a papal bull.
After ten years and in poor health, he wrote on 5 July 1831 to Cardinal Lorenzo Litta, Prefect of the Congregation for the Propagation of the Faith, asking to resign his charge of the Northern District, but before it was granted Bishop Smith died at Ushaw College on 30 July 1831, aged 68.He was buried in the grounds of Ushaw College on 2 August 1831.
Lorenzo Litta was an Italian littérateur and churchman, who became a Cardinal.
Prefect is a magisterial title of varying definition, but which, basically, refers to the leader of an administrative area.
Ushaw College is a former Catholic seminary near the village of Ushaw Moor, County Durham, England. It was founded in 1808 by scholars from the English College, Douai, who had fled France after the French Revolution. Ushaw College was affiliated with the University of Durham from 1968 and was the principal Roman Catholic seminary for the training of Catholic priests in the north of England, finally closing in 2011 due to the shortage of vocations. The buildings and grounds are now maintained by a charitable trust.
The Apostolic Vicariate of the London District was an ecclesiastical jurisdiction of the Roman Catholic Church in England and Wales. It was led by a vicar apostolic who was a titular bishop. The apostolic vicariate was created in 1688 and was dissolved in 1850 and its former area was replaced by the episcopal sees of Westminster and Southwark.
John Briggs was an English prelate of the Roman Catholic Church. He served as the first Bishop of Beverley from 1850 to 1860.
William Turner (1799–1872) was an English Roman Catholic prelate who served as the first Bishop of Salford from 1851 to 1872. After his ordination to the priesthood, he served in the poorer parishes of central Manchester, and was appointed Vicar General for the Lancashire District.
Alexander Smith (1684–1766) was a Roman Catholic bishop who served as the Vicar Apostolic of the Lowland District, Scotland.
James Grant (1706–1778) was a Roman Catholic bishop who served as the Vicar Apostolic of the Lowland District of Scotland.
Alexander Paterson (1766–1831) was a Roman Catholic bishop who served as the Vicar Apostolic of the Lowland District from 1825 to 1827, then, following district name change, Vicar Apostolic of the Eastern District from 1827 to 1831.
Aeneas Chisholm (1759–1818) was a Roman Catholic bishop who served as the Vicar Apostolic of the Highland District, Scotland.
James Francis Kyle (1788–1869) was a Roman Catholic bishop who served as the first Vicar Apostolic of the Northern District of Scotland.
John Murdoch was a Roman Catholic bishop who served as the Vicar Apostolic of the Western District of Scotland.
George Hilary Brown (1784–1856) was an English prelate who served as the first Roman Catholic Bishop of Liverpool from 1850 to 1856.
George Witham was an English Roman Catholic bishop who served as the Vicar Apostolic of the Midland District, and, later, as the Vicar Apostolic of the Northern District.
William Maire (1704–1769) was an English prelate of the Roman Catholic Church. He served as coadjutor to the Vicar Apostolic of the Northern District from 1768 to 1769.
William Walton (1716–1780) was an English Roman Catholic bishop who served as the Vicar Apostolic of the Northern District of England from 1775 to 1780.
Matthew Gibson (1734–1790) was an English Roman Catholic bishop who served as the Vicar Apostolic of the Northern District from 1780 to 1790.
Francis George Mostyn (1800–1847) was a Roman Catholic bishop who served as the Vicar Apostolic of the Northern District of England from 1840 to 1847.
William Riddell (1807–1847) was a Roman Catholic bishop who briefly served as the Vicar Apostolic of the Northern District of England in 1847.
William Hogarth (1786–1866) was an English prelate of the Roman Catholic Church. He was the first Bishop of Hexham and Newcastle.
James Sharples (1797–1850) was an English Roman Catholic bishop. He served as coadjutor to the Vicar Apostolic of the Lancashire District from 1843 until his death in 1850.
The Apostolic Vicariate of England was an ecclesiastical jurisdiction of the Roman Catholic Church in England and Wales. It was led by a vicar apostolic who was a titular bishop. The apostolic vicariate was created in 1623 and was divided into four districts in 1688.
|Catholic Church titles|
| Vicar Apostolic of the Northern District |