Carl Cooper

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The Right Reverend
Carl Cooper
BA, MPhil
Bishop of St David's
Province Wales
Diocese St David's
In office 2002–2008
Predecessor Huw Jones
Successor Wyn Evans
Orders
Consecration 2002
Personal details
Birth name Carl Norman Cooper
Born (1960-08-04) 4 August 1960 (age 54)
Nationality British
Denomination Church in Wales
Spouse Amanda Claire
Previous post Archdeacon of Meirionnydd

Carl Cooper (born 1960) is a former Anglican bishop who was the Bishop of St. David's from 2002 to 2008.

Early life[edit]

Cooper was born on 4 August 1960 and grew up in Wigan in Lancashire. He first spent time in Wales as an undergraduate at the University of Wales, Lampeter, where he took a degree in French before studying theology at Wycliffe Hall in Oxford.[1]

Unusually for a non-native Welsh Bishop, Cooper is a fluent Welsh-speaker. He received a Master of Philosophy degree for a study in bilingualism in the Church in Wales.

Religious life[edit]

He served as curate in Llanelli, then as the Rector of Ciliau Aeron, Ceredigion.[2] He also served at Dolgellau and as Archdeacon of Meirionnydd.

Episcopal career[edit]

He was elected and consecrated Bishop of St David's in 2002.

In his role as bishop, Cooper was invited to Uganda by the "old friend of west Wales", George Katwesigye,[3] there he met MP and University of Wales graduate David Bahati. At that meeting Cooper was quoted as saying, "Wales' influence often stretches further than we realise."[4] David Bahati later tried to pass an act through the Ugandan Parliament to have the death penalty applied to certain homosexual acts.[5] Bishop George Katwesigye has accused perpetrators of homosexuality of "indirectly bringing back colonialism in Uganda".[6]

In February 2008 it was announced that Cooper was to split from his wife of 25 years, Joy.[7] There then followed press speculation linking Cooper with his chaplain and communications officer, the Reverend Mandy Williams Potter. After consultation with the Archbishop of Wales, Cooper took a leave of absence on 12 March 2008;[8] and then resigned his position on 29 April 2008.[9][10][11]

Later life[edit]

After standing down as a bishop of the Church in Wales, Cooper was appointed Chief Executive of the Powys Association of Voluntary Organisations (PAVO),[12] a post that he still holds as of 2014.[13]

Personal life[edit]

Cooper was married to Joy and they have four children together. They separated in 2008 after 25 years of marriage.[14][15]

In 2008, he stepped down as Bishop of St David's because of allegations that he had been having an affair with his chaplain, the Rev Mandy Williams-Potter. At the time, they both denied the affair.[16][17] In 2010, it was revealed by the press that the two were living together and had both separated from their former spouses.[14] Williams-Potter had been married to her husband for 15 years and they had had two children together, before splitting in 2008.[18]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Who's Who 2008 London, A & C Black, 2007 ISBN 978-0-7136-8555-8
  2. ^ Crockford's clerical directory1995, (London, Church House 1994) ISBN 0-7151-8088-6
  3. ^ http://www.churchinwales.org.uk/press/display_press_release.php?prid=4461
  4. ^ http://www.churchinwales.org.uk/press/display_press_release.php?prid=4461
  5. ^ http://edmi.parliament.uk/EDMi/EDMDetails.aspx?EDMID=40483&Session=903
  6. ^ http://ssempanews.blogspot.com/
  7. ^ Daily Telegraph, 22 February 2008, p7
  8. ^ "Bishop given leave over rumours". BBC Wales News. 12 March 2008. Retrieved 2008-04-29. 
  9. ^ "Bishop resigns after speculation". BBC Wales News. 29 April 2008. Retrieved 2008-04-29. 
  10. ^ Bishop and Vicar resign after gossip over "love affair"-article by Tom Peterkin in The Daily Telegraph issue no 47,558 (dated 30 April 2008)
  11. ^ "Press Release - Bishop of St Davids resigns". Church in Wales. 29 April 2008. Retrieved 2008-04-29. 
  12. ^ Williamson, David (30 June 2008). "First day in a new job for the ex-bishop who's now Mr Cooper". The Western Mail. Retrieved 17 May 2014. 
  13. ^ "Chief Executive". PAVO. Retrieved 17 May 2014. 
  14. ^ a b Kelly, Tom; North, Nic (4 June 2010). "Bishop who denied affair with married reverend is now living with her in home they bought with shared mortgage". The Daily Mail. Retrieved 26 November 2014. 
  15. ^ "Bishop and wife are to separate". BBC News. 21 February 2008. Retrieved 26 November 2014. 
  16. ^ "Bishop given leave over rumours". BBC News. 12 March 2008. Retrieved 26 November 2014. 
  17. ^ "Chaplain denies bishop 'rumours'". BBC News. 6 March 2008. Retrieved 26 November 2014. 
  18. ^ Shipton, Martin (3 June 2010). "Former bishop shares home with ex-chaplain". Wales Online. Retrieved 26 November 2014.