patrons and churches
Posted by Sarah P on June 19, 1998 at 07:02:42:
In response to Vicars and Livings, written by Captain Everett on June 17, 1998 at 23:47:48
As far as I can see, the system was a direct follow on from the pre-Reformation system where most parish churches belonged to monasteries. The parishioners had to pay financial dues and tithes, but it was up to the monastery who was appointed vicar, and how much of the money went into their pocket and how much was spent on the upkeep of the church and the vicar or curate's salary. Vigilant medieval bishops were always taking monasteries to court over not properly maintaining the church and its services to parishioners, while creaming off the profits.
In some cases, the original 'owner' or lord of the manor who handed over the church to the monastery kept the right of presentation to the living so as to have a career for a younger son, while letting the monastery take the money and the burden of upkeep of building etc. After the Dissolution of the monasteries in the 16th century, the new lay owners of monastic property also kept the control of the churches which were associated with the monastery, which is why older churches continued to be handled like property in this way in JA's time and beyond.
End of lecture in medieval church history, JA is much more fun.
Posting followups to old messages is disabled; instead go to the main index and post a new message which mentions this one.