Kells (originally Kenlis) is the name of an ancient Irish town in which a very important synod was held A.D. 1152. It was convoked by Papyrio (Paparo ?), cardinal priest, and the pope's (Eugenius III) legate, for the formal reception of the Irish Church into the see of Rome. The Church of Ireland, which had been founded. A.D. 432, remained until the close of the 9th century, and even later, almost entirely isolated from the rest of Christendom. Through these long years, bishop Usher says (iv, 325), "All the affairs of the bishops and Church of Ireland were done at home... the people and the kings made their bishops." All this while the Irish Church, in her isolation and poverty, grew from infancy to maturity, following the plain scriptural teachings of her unlettered founder, without perhaps knowing anything of the refinements and innovations which were arising on the Continent. The irruption of the Danes in.A.D. 787 had brought the Irish, and with them the Church, into more general communication with continental Europe; and, when, towards the close of the 9th century, many of the colonists in Ireland embraced Christianity, their clergy applied to the. English, whom they claimed as their kindred, for .ordination, and in A.D. 1085, Lanfranc, archbishop of Canterbury, ordained for them Donatus as the bishop of Dublin. On his con, secration Donatus made the following declaration: " I Donatus, bishop of the see of Dublin, in Ireland, do promise canonical obedience to you, O Lanfranc, archbishop of the holy Church of Canterbury, and to your successors'? (Illust. Men of Ireland, i, 235). This was the first promise of fealty on the part of any church in Ireland, and it was made by a foreigner (no native had ever made such a pledge), and gave rise to two Church organizations, the old one founded by St. Patrick, and the new Dano-Irish Church started by this action of the archbishop of Canterbury. The Synod of Kells was called to bring about a union of the two branches, or, at least, to establish on a permanent basis the claims of Romanism. We cannot tell who composed this celebrated synod at Kells, for from this time forward all the records were in the keeping of the new organization; those of the old were either accidentally or intentionally lost. It: is not, however, very probable that the old Irish government of nearly seven hundred years' standing would at once dissolve itself and merge into the new one, whose purposes they had so long resisted. Besides, nearly twenty years afterwards, in A.D. 1170, we find the old Synod of Armagh still in existence, deploring and protesting, against the slaughterings and devastations of the English under Henry II, whom the popes had then sent over to Ireland to bring their Church "to canonical conformity." Papyrio clearly recognised it as his task to establish a hierarchy where none had ever existed before, and for this purpose he attempted to suppress most of the former Irish bishops, and to create four great archiepiscopal sees-those of Armagh Cashel, Dublin, and Tuam-by instituting a system of tithes, claiming Peter's pence, and requiring conformity in all Church matters " to the one catholic and Roman office." He brought also with him the palliums or investitures from the pope for the four newly-created archiepiscopal sees; the reception of these was regarded as so many pledges of fealty and obedience to the popes of Rome. The public presentation and reception of these badges had long been an object of great solicitude on the part both of Rome aid of several of the prominent bishops in England and Ireland; for, in their estimation, until this was done, there seemed to have been something wanting in regard to a full and coinplete union. All of these measures, as we have seen, were, however, inaugurated and carried forward by the Dano-Irish and a small Romanizing party in Ireland. The native clergy, with few exceptions, would have actively opposed them had they not looked upon. the Danes as mere colonists. To, their sorrow, the Irish learned, when too late, that the Roman hierarchy had been successfully established in Ireland by the action of the Synod of Kells. See Malit, History of the Irish Church, p. 6. SEE IRELAND. (D. D.)

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