When the Church in England broke communion with the Roman Catholic Church, the Church of England was established by the state as the established church. Later, by decree of the Irish Parliament, a similar new body became the State Church in the Kingdom of Ireland. It assumed possession of most Church property (and so retained a great repository of religious architecture and other items, though some were later destroyed). The substantial majority of the population remained faithful to the Latin Rite of Roman Catholicism, despite the political and economic advantages of membership in the state church. They were obliged to find alternative premises and to conduct their services in secret. The English-speaking minority mostly adhered to the Church of Ireland or to Presbyterianism. On the death of Archbishop Trench of Tuam in 1839, the Province of Tuam was united to the Armagh. Over the centuries, numerous dioceses were merged, in view of declining membership. The historic sees of Derry and Raphoe were united in 1834. It is for this reason that the united diocese has two cathedrals.
^ abFryde, E. B.; Greenway, D. E.; Porter, S.; Roy, I. (1986). Handbook of British Chronology (Third Edition, revised ed.). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. pp. 387–388. ISBN0-521-56350-X.Cite uses deprecated parameters (help)