Daniel Rowland's Chapel (1763)




For Rowland, with the blessings of revival came further persecution from the bishop in 1763 when a William Williams was appointed to the curacies of Llangeitho and Nantcwnlle; Rowland was out of a job! Rowland carried out services at a house nearby and virtually all his congregation went with him; to such an extent that Holy Communion was not administered at the church for nearly 50 years. A chapel was built for Rowland at the nearby Gwynfil. In 1767 the church wardens and principal inhabitants of Nantcwnlle, together with the non-resident vicar asked Rowland to serve as curate again; to which he assented on the understanding that the bishop agreed, but the bishop did not agree. In 1769 he was offered the living of Newport in Pembrokeshire on the understanding that he would live there. However, “when the people around Llangeitho heard of it, they were greatly distressed. They flocked in great numbers to his house, and their entreaties, their importunities, and their weeping, were such as can hardly be conceived.” The living must have been very tempting, but he declined it. John Thornton, who had offered the living, wrote to Rowland’s son, Nathaniel, “I had a high opinion of your father before, but I have now a still higher opinion of him, though he declines to accept my offer. The reasons he assigns are highly creditable to him. It is not a usual thing with me to allow other people to go to my pocket, but tell your father, that he is fully welcome to do so whenever he pleases.”

Despite the evil intentions of the bishop, Rowland’s work was not curtailed in the slightest. In 1764 Rowland made a defence to the Bishop on the revival. This was rejected on the grounds that it estranged people from the Established Church and belittled the clergy!

After his expulsion from the Anglican Church, Rowland's followers built this chapel, although it has been re-built since. The original building was approximately where the statue is today. Christmas Evans wrote. 'I see him now entering in his black gown through a little door from the outside of the pulpit.

Revivals took place here in 1780, 1790, 1797, 1811, 1813, 1819, 1824 and 1832.