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Christmas Evans: Welsh Baptist

Christmas EvansBorn at Ysgaerwen, near Llandyssil (15 miles east southeast of Cardigan, [Wales]), December 25, 1766; death at Swansea July 19, 1838. Through the death of his father, a shoemaker, he was left destitute at the age of nine. After six unhappy years spent with his mother's uncle he became a farm hand. Through the influence of David Davies, a preacher and school-teacher, he joined the Presbyterian church at Llwynrhydowen, and soon afterward began to preach. In 1788 he joined the Baptist church at Aberduar and in 1789 was ordained pastor at Lleyn. In 1792 he went to Anglesey, where for many years he ruled over the Baptist churches; his salary was seventeen pounds a year. For a time he was a victim of the "Sandemanian heresy," but later he regained his orthodoxy. Finally the churches of Anglesey rebelled against his despotic government, and in 1826 he went to Caerphilly. In 1828 he removed to Cardiff, and in 1832 to Carnarvon, his last pastorate. Evans was a man of ardent piety and a great and powerful preacher. His brethren called him the "Bunyan of Wales." His Sermons have been frequently published in Welsh (English translation with memoir, by Joseph Crow, Philadelphia, 1854).

Bibliography: Biographies have been written by: D. R. Stephens, London, 1847; D. M. Evans, ib. 1863; E. P. Hood, New York, 1901. Consult also DNB, xviii. 57-58.

From The New Schaff-Herzog Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge... New York: Funk and Wagnalls Company, 1909.

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