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Hanes Eglwysi Annibynnol Cymru

(History of the Welsh Independent Churches)

By Thomas Rees and John Thomas; published in 1871+.

 

These first sections were extracted by Darris G Williams (2005 & 2/2008)

These following section was extracted by Gareth Hicks from the CD published by Archive CD Books (Dec 2007)

 


Rhydyfro

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(pages 90-92)

"Pentref bychan tua milldir a haner o Bontardawy, ar y ffordd sydd yn  arwain oddiyno i Langadog, yw y lle hwn.  Yn mhlwyf Llanguwg y mae. Nid oedd y gymydogaeth hon ychydig flynyddau yn ol ond lled deneu ei  phoblogaeth, ac anghyfleus i'r ychydig drigolion i fwynhau breintiau crefyddol; ond er hyny yr oedd amryw bobl grefyddol yn byw yn yr ardal o oes i oes er's ugeiniau o flynyddau. 

Y Gellionen oedd addoldy yr ardalwyr hyn cyhyd ag y parhawyd i bregethu athrawiaeth efengylaidd yno. Wedi adeiladu capel Baran yn 1805, yno y byddai y rhan fwyaf o honynt yn cyrchu.  O'r pryd yr adeiladwyd Baran hyd y flwyddyn 1828, nid  oedd un math o foddion crefyddol yn cael eu cynal yn ardal Rhydyfro,  oddieithr ambell bregeth achlysurol mewn anedd-dai.  Yn y flwyddyn hono torodd diwygiad crefyddol grymus allan trwy yr holl wlad, a chafodd yr ardal hon, yn mysg ardaloedd eraill, ran o'r gawod fendithiol, ac ymunodd amryw o'r ardalwyr a'r eglwysi yn Baran, yr Alltwen, a Charmel Llanguwg. 

Tua yr amser hwn daeth William Hopkin i fyw i'r ardal, a bu yn offerynol i gael gan yr ychydig frodyr yn y gymydogaeth i osod i fyny gyfarfod gweddi bob nos Sabboth.  Enwau y brodyr a unasant yn y gwaith da hwn gyda W. Hopkin oeddynt Howell Llewellyn, Evan Howell, Job Morgan a'i fab, Thomas Howell, Llewellyn William, a Dafydd Morgan; ac yn fuan wedi hyny ymunodd Owen Evans a hwy. Yr oedd hefyd yn eu mysg rai gwragedd rhagorol megis Catherine Llwyd, Margaret Edwards, a gwraig Hopkin Harry. 

Yn fuan ar ol hyn cafwyd pregethu lled gyson yn yr ardal.  Byddai y naill neu y llall o'r pregethwyr ieuaingc o ysgol Mr. Howells, Baran, yma agos bob nos Sabboth.  Coffeir yn barchus am ffyddlondeb Mr. W. Williams, yn awr o Hirwaun, a Mr. John Jones, yr hwn a ymfudodd i'r America, yn ymweled a'r ardal hon pan yr oeddynt yn ysgol Baran.  Wedi i bethau fod mewn agwedd lewyrchus iawn am dymor yma cyfododd ysbryd ymfudo yn yr ardalwyr, ac aeth amryw o'r creffyddwyr ffyddlonaf o'r ardal hon i'r America, a bu y cyfarfod gweddi yn agos i farw ar ol eu colli. 

Ond trefnodd Rhagluniaeth yn garedig i ragflaenu hyny trwy arwain hen frawd ffyddlon a nodedig o wresog o'r enw Dafydd Jones i fyw i felin Gelligron, tua y flwyddyn 1832. Bu ef yn foddion, nid yn unig i adfywio y cyfarfod gweddi, ond hefyd i gychwyn ysgol Sabbothol yn yr ardal, yr hon a fu o fendith ddirfawr i'r ieuengetyd ac eraill.  Effeithiodd yr ysgol i luosogi y cynnulleidfaoedd a ddeuent i'r cyfarfodydd gweddio ac i wrando y pregethau, a theimlid fod yr anedd-dai yn anghyfleus iawn, yn enwedig at gynal yr ysgol. 

Yn ngwyneb hyn aed i feddwl a siarad am adeiladu ysgoldy bychan at gadw yr ysgol, a moddion crefyddol eraill, ar brydnawn a nos y Sabboth, ond ni fwriedid llai na myned i fyny i Baran bob bore Sabboth.  Penodwyd William Hopkin, Godregarth, ac Owen Evans, Llwynmudw, i fyned trwy yr ardal i gasglu addewidion at yr ysgoldy.  Cawsant dderbyniad caredig ac addewidion mwy haelionus nag a ddisgwylient yn mhob man.  Wedi galw yn mhob ty yn y Fro, aethant i'r Mynydd-dir, yn nghymydogaeth Baran, ar yr un neges, ond yn lle cymorth, sarugrwydd a gawsant gan mwyaf yno, am yr ofnid y buasent ar ol cael ysgoldy yn llwyr ymadael a'r fam eglwys.  Darfu i angharedigrwydd pobl Baran, yn lle rhagflaenu ymadawiad pobl Rhydyfro, ei gyflymu.  Pan welodd pobl y Fro fod pobl y Mynydd-dir yn wrthwynebol iddynt, yn lle adeiladu ysgoldy, fel y bwriadent, adeiladasant gapel o werth 320, heb un oriel ynddo. 

Dechreuwyd adeiladu yn y flywyddyn 1843, ac wedi gorphen y gwaith ymadawodd tua deugain o'r aelodau o Baran, a chorphelwyd hwy yn eglwys Annibynol ar y 10fed dydd o Ionawr, 1844.  Cymerodd Mr. Pryse, Cwmllynfell, yr hwn yn flaenorol oedd yn weinidog yr eglwys yn Baran, ofal y gangen hon, a pharhaodd ei gysylltiad a hi fel eu gweinidog hyd derfyn ei oes. 

Llwyddodd yr achos yn rhyfeddol dan ei ofal ef, fel yr oedd yr eglwys flynyddau cyn ei farwolaeth yn fwy na chant o aelodau, yr hyn oedd yn nifer fawr i ardal gyfyng a chymharol deneu ei phoblogaeth. Mae oriel wedi ei gosod yn y capel er's blynyddau bellach, y fynwent wedi cael ei harddu, a thy capel cyfleus wedi ei adeiladu yn ymyl, a'r cwbl yn ddiddyled. 

Wedi byw ar weinidogaeth achlysurol am oddeutu blwyddyn ar ol marwolaeth eu gweinidog parchus, rhoddodd yr eglwys hon ei hun yn 1870 o dan ofal Mr. John Jones, mewn cysylltiad a Charmel, Llanguwg, a'r Gwrhyd.  Cymerasom y rhan fwyaf o'r hanes hwn o law ysgrifen Mr. Pryse, Cwmllynfell, yr hon a ysgrifenwyd ganddo lai na blwyddyn cyn ei farwolaeth."

 

Translation by Eleri Rowlands (Dec 2007)

"This is a little village about a mile and a half away from Pontardawe on the road that leads from there to Llangadog. It is in the parish of Llangiwg. A few years ago the population was very sparse and it was inconvenient for those who enjoy religious services;  but despite that there were quite a few believers living in the area from generation to generation.

Gellionnen was the place of worship for the people of the area as long as evangelist teaching was preached there. After the building of Baran Chapel in 1805, most of them worshipped there.  From the time that the Baran was built until 1828 there was no religious presence in the area of Rhydyfro, apart from the occasional sermon in local homes.  In that year a powerful religious revival broke out through the whole country, and this area, along with other areas, experienced a shower of blessings and many local people joined the congregations at Baran, Alltwen and Carmel,Llangiwg.

About this time, Wil Hopkin came to live in the area and he was instrumental in persuading the few brothers in the neighbourhood to form a prayer meeting on Sunday evenings. The names of the ones who joined in the good work with W. Hopkin were Howell Llewellyn, Evan Howell, Job Morgan and his son, Thomas Howell, Llewellyn William and Dafydd Morgan; and soon after that Owen Evans joined them. There were also some excellent ladies such as Catherine Lloyd, Margaret Edwards and the wife of Hopkin Harry.

Soon after this they received fairly regular preaching in the area. Either one or another of the young preachers from Mr Howells' school, Baran were here almost every Sunday evening. We remember respectfully the faithfulness of Mr W. Williams, now of Hirwaun, and Mr John Jones who emigrated to America, visiting the locality while they were in Baran school.  When everything had been very successful for some time, a spirit of emigration arose in the locals and many of the most faithful moved to America and the prayer meetings almost died out after their loss.

But Fate arranged things more kindly by leading a notable old faithful by the name of Dafydd Jones to live in Gelligron Mill about the year 1832. He was a means, not only of reviving the prayer meetings, but also in establishing a Sabbath school in the area which was a great blessing to the young people and others. The school managed to multiply the congregations who came to the prayer meetings and to listen to the sermons, and it was felt that the homes they were held in were unsuitable especially for establishing a school.

To this end they discussed and decided to build a small schoolroom to be used as a school and other religious devotions on the afternoon and evening of the Sabboth but it was not expected to be more than just going up to Baran every  Sunday morning. William Hopkin, Godrergarth and Owen Evans, Llwynmudw were appointed to travel around the area collecting promises towards the schoolroom. They received a kind welcome and more generous promises then they had expected everywhere they went. After they had called in every house in the area, they went to the highlands, in the area of the Baran, on one visit, but instead of help, they received a churlish reception on the whole, as the inhabitants believed they wanted to build a schoolroom which would turn its back on the mother church completely. The unkindness of the people of Baran speeded up the split with the people of Rhydyfro. When the people of the vale realised that the highland people were opposed to them, instead of building a schoolroom, as they meant to do, they built a chapel costing 320, without a gallery.

Building started in the year 1843, and once the work was finished, about forty members of the Baran left and they were established as an Independent chapel on January 10th, 1844.  Mr Pryse, Cwmllynfell, who was the former minister in the chapel in Baran, took office, and his connection to the chapel continued until the end of his days.

The cause was surprisingly successful under his care when in the latter years there was a membership of more than 100, which was a large number in such a narrow area with such a sparse population. A gallery has been constructed in the chapel for many years now and the graveyard has been tidied and a convenient chapel house has been built nearby, and the whole lot without debt.

Having lived on occasional ministry for about a year after the death of their respected minister, this chapel put herself under the care of Mr John Jones, along with Carmel, Llangiwg and the Gwrhyd.  We took most of this history from the handwriting of Mr Pryse, Cwmllynfell, which was written by him less than a year before he died."


Gwrhyd

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(page 319)

"Mae y capel hwn wedi ei adeiladu ar ben mynydd y Gwrhyd, ac yn agos i haner y ffordd o Carmel i'r Pantteg. Fel y nodasom yn hanes Cwmllynfell, yr oedd capel bychan yn Forchegel, yn agos i'r man lle y saif capel y Gwrhyd yn bresenol, oddiar ddechreu y ddeunawfed ganrif, ac er fod yno amryw wedi eu claddu, trwy rhyw foddion anhysbys i ni, cafodd y lle ei adael i syrthio i adfeilion. Yr oedd y rhan fwyaf o drigolion yr ardal, pa fodd bynag, yn parhau yn Ymneillduwyr, ac yn myned i addoli i Gwmllynfell, y Gellionen, neu yr Alltwen, hyd nes yr adeiladwyd Carmel a'r Pantteg yn nes atynt. Gan fod Carmel a'r Pantteg yn dra anghyfleus, o herwydd noethder a gerwindeb y ffyrdd, yr oedd preswylwyr yr ardal er's blynyddau yn son am gael capel yma. Yn y flwyddyn 1856, cafodd y capel ei adeiladu, a chorpholwyd ynddo eglwys, yn benaf, os nad yn gwbl oll, o aelodau Carmel. Gollyngwyd o hancr cant i bymtheg a deugain o aelodau o Carmel i ddechreu yr achos yn y lle hwn. Corpholwyd hwy yn eglwys ar y Sabboth, Mehefin 28ain, 1857, ac agorwyd y capel newydd y Mawrth a'r Mercher canlynol, pryd y pregethodd Meistri D. Evans, Nazareth; P. Griffiths, Alltwen; T. Jones, Treforis; W. Humphreys, Cadle; J. Davies, Cwmaman; G. Jones, Cefncribwr, ac eraill. Costiodd y capel, a'r mur oddiamgylch y fynwent, 350p., ond talwyd y cwbl hyd at 50p. erbyn dydd yr agoriad, ac ni buwyd fawr o amser cyn talu y gweddill. Y rhai sydd wedi gwasanaethu swydd diaconiaid yma o ffurfiad yr eglwys hyd yn awr ydynt, - Hezeciah Evans, Gwrhydisaf; William Evans, Cwmnantllugi; Llewellyn Rees, Gwrhydisaf; Thomas Griffiths, Pistyllgwyn; Thomas Rees, Ynyswen, a David Williams, Llwyncelyn. Rhif yr aelodau yn bresenol yw cant. Mae yr eglwys hon o'r dechreuad wedi bod dan yr un weinidogaeth a'r fam-eglwys yn Carmel. Nis gellir disgwyl yma lawer a gynnydd yn y gynnulleidfa heb i agoriad gweithian glo ar lechweddi y mynyddau luosogi trigolion yr ardal. Mae agos holl drigolion y gymydogaeth yn bresenol naill ai yn aelodau neu yn wrandawyr rheolaidd yma. Mae plwyf Llanguwg er's mwy na dau cant o flynyddau wedi bod yn gartrefle Annibyniaeth. Er nad yw trigolion y plwyf oll nemawr dines ddeng mill o rif, y mae yma ddeg a gapeli Annibynol, ac eglwysi cryfion yn y rhan fwyaf a honynt, heb son am addoldai y gwahanol enwadau Ymneiliduol eraill. Buasai trigolion y plwyf hwn mewn cyflwr moesol truenus oni buasai yr hyn a wnaeth Ymneillduaeth yma."

 

Translation by Eleri Rowlands (Jan 2008)

"This chapel has been built on top of the Gwrhyd mountain and close to half way from Carmel to Pantteg. As we noted in the history of Cwmllynfell, there was a little chapel in Forchegel, close to the spot where the present Gwrhyd chapel now stands, since the beginning of the eighteenth century, and although many are buried there, the place was allowed to fall in ruins. Most of the people living in the area remained non-conformists, and carried on worshipping in Cwmllynfell, Gellionnen or Alltwen until Carmel and Pantteg were built closer to them.  Since the road conditions to Carmel and Pantteg were poor the people of the area had long discussed building a new chapel here.  The chapel was built in the year 1856, and it incorporated most if not all of the members of Carmel. The church membership dropped by fifty to fifty five to start the cause in this place. They were established as a church on Sunday, June 28th, 1857 and the new church opened on the following Tuesday and Wednesday when Mr D. Evans, Nazareth; Mr P. Griffiths, Alltwen; Mr T. Jones, Morriston; Mr W. Humphreys, Cadle; Mr J. Davies, Cwmaman; Mr G. Jones, Cefncribwr, and others preached.  The church and a wall around the graveyard cost 350, but the whole amount, except for 50 was settled by the opening day and they weren't long in paying off the rest of the debt.  The ones who have served as deacons from the opening day until now are, - Hezeciah Evans, Gwrhydisaf; William Evans, Cwmnantllugi; Llewellyn Rees, Gwrhydisaf; Thomas Griffiths, Pistyllgwyn; Thomas Rees, Ynyswen, a David Williams, Llwyncelyn. The membership number is now one hundred. This chapel has been under the care of the same minister as Carmel, the mother church, from the day of its opening.  Unless more coal pits open on the slopes of the mountains and thereby increasing the workers in the area it will not be possible to increase the congregations. Almost all the people who live in the area are either members or attend as listeners regularly.  For more than 200 years the parish of Llangiwg has been the home of Independence.  Although the whole area doesn't comprise more than ten thousand people, besides other non-conformist places of worship, there are ten Independent chapels and most of them are strong. The people of the area would be in a poor moral state if it were not for non-conformism. "

 


Carmel, Gwauncaegurwen

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"Fel ysgoldy a lle i bregethu yn achlysurol ynddo yr adeiladwyd y capel hwn gyntaf yn y flwyddyn 1762. Y prif offeryn i gychwyn ei adeiladiad oedd Mr. Noah Jones, gwr genedigol o'r ardal hon, a'r hwn oedd y pryd hwnw yn weinidog yn Walsal, sir Stafford. Efe oedd perchenog fferm y Cwmbach, ar ran o ba un y saif Carmel. Darfu i Mr. Jones, heblaw dwyn holl draul yr adeiladaeth, roddi dwy bunt y flwyddyn at draul addysg plant tlodion y gymydogaeth yn yr ysgol a gedwid yn yr ysgoldy, a phunt yn y flwyddyn i dalu i Mr. Josiah Rees, Gellionen, am bregethu yn yr ysgoldy ar brydnawnau y Sabbothau dros dymor yr haf. Bu farw Mr. Jones, heb wneuthur ei ewyllys, ac aeth ei eiddo i feddiant ei frawd, ond bu hwnw mor garedig a gwerthu yr ysgoldy i'r ardalwyr am ddeg gini, a rhoddi les arni am fil ond un o flynyddau am y gydnabyddiaeth o byburen yn y flwyddyn, os gofynid hi.

Bu Mr. Davies, o'r Alltwen, am lawer o flynyddau yn pregethu yn achlysurol yn yr ysgoldy. Yn y flwyddyn 1821, ailadeiladwyd ef, a chafodd ei agor yn mis Ebrill, 1822. Yn niwedd yr un flwyddyn, daeth tua haner cant o aelodau o Gwmllynfell yma, a chorpholwyd hwy yn eglwys Annibynol gan Meistri R. Howells, Baran; P. Griffiths, Alltwen, a J. Rowlands, Cwmllynfell.

lonawr 12fed, 1825, y cadwyd y cyfarfod cymundeb cyntaf yma. Ar y trydydd cymundeb yn mis Mawrth, derbyniodd Mr. Griffiths un-ar-ddeg o aelodau newyddion yma. Wedi corpholiad yr eglwys bu Mr. Howells, a Mr. Griffiths yn gydweinidogion am dymor, ond yn dra buan syrthiodd y gofal oll ar ysgwyddau Mr. Griffiths. Bu ef yn llafurio yma gyda llwyddiant a pharch mawr hyd y flwyddyn 1845, pryd y gorfodwyd ef, ar gyfrif helaethrwydd maes ei lafur, i roddi gofal y lle hwn i fyny.

Yn y flwyddyn 1829, adeiladwyd y capel y drydydd waith, ac agorwyd ef Medi 29ain a'r 30ain, yn yr un flwyddyn.

Yn fuan wedi i Mr. Griffiths roddi yr eglwys i fyny, rhoddwyd galwad i Mr. John Rees, Bryn, Llanelli. Bu Mr. Rees yn gweinidogaethu yma gyda chymeradwyaeth gyffredinol yr eglwys a'r gwrandawyr hyd nes iddo symud i Ganaan, Abertawy, yn niwedd y flwyddyn 1850. Yn mhen ychydig wedi ei ymadawiad ef, rhoddwyd galwad i Mr. Evan Evans, Nantyglo. Er fod eglwys Carmel dan ddylanwad nifer o ddynion da a chrefyddol iawn, a bod Mr. Evans yn ddyn da, ac uwchlaw y cyffredin am fanylder a chywirdeb ei wybodaeth Ysgrythyrol a chyffredinol, etto, mewn rhyw fodd methodd yr eglwys ac yntau gyd-dynu yn ddymunol, ac felly ni bu tymor ei weinidogaeth ef yma ond dros ddeunaw mis.

Dilynwyd Mr. Evans yma gan Mr. Evan Lewis, aelod o eglwys Llanwrthwl, Brycheiniog, ond a urddasid yn weinidog yn Dolyddelen, sir Gaernarfon. Bu ef yma am ddeng mlynedd. Yn y flwyddyn 1864, ymfudodd i Awstralia, lle y mae yn bresenol.

Yn Mai, 1865, dechreuodd Mr. John Jones, Maentwrog, y gweinidog presenol, ei lafur yma, ac y mae yn aros yn ei le hyd y dydd hwn. Mae yma gynnulleidfa gref ac eglwys o ddau cant o aelodau.

Dechreuwyd yma Ysgol Sabbothol yn 1814, ac y mae yn parhau o hyd, ac yn awr yn ddwy gangen luosog a llewyrchus. Y diaconiaid a weinyddasant yma ar y cymundeb cyntaf oedd Daniel Evans, Gwrhydisaf, mab Mr. W. Evans, gynt gweinidog Cwmllynfell, a'i frawd-yn-nghyfraith, Thomas David, Cwmgors.

Oddiar ffurfiad yr eglwys hyd yn bresenol mae y personau canlynol wedi gwasanaethu y swydd o ddiaconiaid yma: -

Y rhai canlynol, hyd y gwyddom ni, yn unig a gyfodwyd yma i bregethu: -

***Wedi ysgrifenu hanes Cwmllynfell, gwelsom yn hen lyfr yr eglwys hono, yr hwn sydd yn ngafael y Cofrestrydd Cyffredinol yn Llundain, mai yn 1767, y cymerodd Mr. William Evans ofal gweinidogaethol ei fam-eglwys, ac felly ni bu ond tair blynedd yn weinidog yno, canys bu farw yn 1770, ond yn ystod y tymor byr hwnw derbyniodd 132 o aelodau, a bedyddiodd 102 o blant. Gweinidog rhyfeddol o lwyddianus ydoedd yn mhob lle fu dan ei ofal."

 

Translation by Eleri Rowlands (Jan 2008)

 This chapel was first built in 1762 as a schoolroom and as a place for occasional preaching. Mr Noah Jones, a man who was born locally, was the prime mover for building.  He was, at the time, a minister in Walsall, Staffordshire.  He was the owner of Cwmbach farm, where Carmel now stands. Mr Jones, besides paying the costs of building Carmel and donating 2 a year towards the costs of educating the poor children of the area in the school held in the schoolroom also paid 1 during the year to Mr Josiah Rees, Gellionnen for preaching in the schoolroom on Sunday afternoons in the summer.  Mr Jones died intestate. His assets passed to his brother. He was kind enough to sell the schoolroom to the local residents for ten guineas, (ten pounds and ten shillings) and to grant a 999 year lease at a peppercorn rent, if demanded

For many years Mr Davies from Alltwen occasionally preached in the schoolroom.  In 1821 it was rebuilt and was opened in April 1822. At the end of that year about fifty members came here from Cwmllynfell and they were established as an Independent chapel by Mr R. Howells, Baran; Mr P. Griffiths, Alltwen; and Mr J. Rowlands, Cwmllynfell.

The first communion service was held here on January 12th, 1825. At the third communion in March, Mr Griffiths accepted eleven new members here. After the establishment of the chapel Mr Howells and Mr Griffiths were co-ministers for a while but quite soon the care of the chapel fell on the shoulders of Mr Griffiths. He worked hard successfully and with great respect until the year 1845, when because of overwork he had to give up.

In the year 1829 the chapel was rebuilt for a third time and it was opened on September 29th and the 30th in the same year.

Soon after Mr Griffiths gave up the care of the chapel, Mr John Rees, Bryn, Llanelli was given a call. Mr Rees ministered here with the common consent of the chapel members and listeners until he moved to Canaan, Swansea, at the end of 1850. Soon after he left a call was given to Mr. Evan Evans, Nantyglo. Although Carmel was under the influence of many good, religious men and  Mr Evans was a good man, who had more than the usual knowledge for detail and scriptural correctness, in some way the chapel members and he failed to work together effectively so the term of his ministry lasted only eighteen months.

Mr Evans was followed by Mr Evan Lewis, a member of the chapel of Llanwrthwl, Breconshire, but was ordained a minister in Dolydden, Caernarfonshire. He was here for ten years. In 1864, he emigrated (migrated) to Australia where he still resides.

In May, 1865, Mr John Jones, Maentwrog, started his ministry. He is the present minister. There is a strong congregation and a chapel of two hundred members.

A Sunday School was established in 1814, which still exists, and it is now a successful two branch Sunday School. The deacons who served here at the first communion were Daniel Evans, Gwrhydisaf, the son of  Mr. W. Evans, the former minister of Cwmllynfell, and his son-in-law, Thomas David, Cwmgors.

Since the formation of the chapel until now these people have served as deacons here:-

The following, as far as we know, are the only ones to have preached here:-

 

*** Since writing the history of Cwmllynfell, we saw in the old book of that church, that is now in the possession of the General Registrar in London, that Mr William Evans took over the care of the mother church  in 1767, and so he was a minister for only three years, since he died in 1770, but in that short time he accepted 132 members, and christened 102 children. He was a remarkably successful minister at every church under his care.

 


Pantteg, Ystalyfera

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  (Vol 2, p170-174)

"Yn y Diwygiwr am 1848, tu dal. 15, y rnae hanes lled gyflawn. am yr eglwys hon wedi ymddangos. Ysgrifenwyd ef gan Mr. P. Griffiths, Alltwen, yr hwn oedd mewn gwell cyfle i wneyd hyny na neb sydd yn fyw; ac yr ydym yn rhoddi yr hyn a ysgrifenwyd ganddo ef yn llawn yma.

"Mae'r Pantteg yn sefyll ar yml y ffordd fawr yn Nghwmtawe, 12 milldir o Abertawy, yn mhlwyf Llangiwc, sir Forganwg. Yr oedd yn yr ardal hon dy bychan wedi ei adeiladu gan drigolion yr ardal, at gadw ysgol ddyddiol; ac wedi cael lle at hyny gan y parchus F. Gough, Ynysgedwyn, am ddim, tra fyddai dwfr yn rhedeg yn afon Tawe. Yr oedd amryw o bobl grefyddol yn byw yn yr ardaloedd yma, rhai o'r Alltwen, Godre'rhos, a Chwmllynfell; ac yr oeddynt yn cadw cyfarfodydd gweddio ar nosweithiau o'r wythnos, a phrydnawnau Sabbothau-a phregethu achlysurol yn Penpont-yr-ystrad, Glan'rhyd, Ystalyfera Uchaf, &c., ond nid oedd un achos wedi ei sefydlu. Cododd ysgol Sabothol yn yr ardal, a chafodd hon ei chynal yn yr hen ysgoldy. Yn y cyfamser, (hyny yw tua 1818), daeth y diweddar Barch. Daniel Griffiths, bryd hwnw o Felin-ycwrt, yn ddyn ieuangc dawnus a hwylus, i bregethu yu achlysurol i'r ardal, a chymhellwyd ef i dd'od yn fisol. Adnewyddodd yr ysgol, lluosogodd y gwrandawyr, ac aeth yr ysgoldy, a holl dai yr ardal, yn rhy fychain i gynwys y gwrandawyr; byddem yn gorfod bod allan-ac allan y bu'r ysgrifenydd agos bob tro cyn cael addoldy. Oddiar yr arwyddion yma o lwyddiant, meddyliwyd, siaradwyd, ac ymgynghorwyd am ryw le mwy cyfleus ac eangach er cynal addoliad, a hyny yn achlysurol; a daethant i benderfyniad i fynu ty er addoli. Yr oedd Mr. John Jones, Fountain Hall, goruchwyliwr ar gannal Cwmtawe (aelod o Gastellnedd), yn trigianu yn yr ardal, ac yn ddyn gwybodus iawn o amgylchiadau adeiladu, &c. Ynigynghorasant ag ef am y mater, ac aeth drostynt at Mr. F. Gough, o Ynysgedwyn, a chafodd ddarn mawr o dir at adeiladu, mewn lle cyfleus ar yml y ffordd fawr ar gommon Alltgrug, yn y Graigarw, heb fod yn mhell oddiwrth yr hen ysgoldy; a rhoddodd y boneddwr uchod lease ar y lle, dros 999 o flynyddau, am chwe cheiniog yn y flwyddyn, os deuent i'w cheisio. Felly, trosglwyddwyd y lle i ofal ymddiriedolwyr, sef Meistriaid Jones, Fountain Hall; Thomas Harper, Pontardawe Cottage; Thomas Morgans, Penlanfach; Evan Evans, Gilfachyrhaidd; Rees Prise, Ystalyferra isaf; Hezekiah Evans, Gwrid, a W. Evans, Cwmnantllicu. Wedi cael y lle yn sicr, dechreuwyd ar y gwaith o adeiladu; a bu yma ymdrech nid bychan i gael y defnyddiau at eu gilydd, cludwyd ato nos a dydd, a buwyd wrth oleuni y ser yn cludo meini a phethau eraill at y deml hon. Tanysgrifiwyd ato, a chasglwyd gan yr aelodau trwy amryw ardaloedd, ac heb gymorth neb gweinidogion na phregethwyr; oblegid yr oedd y Parch. John Davies, Alltwen, yn barnu nad oedd dim o'i eisiau, y gallasent gerdded 4 milldir i'r Alltwen, a rhywbeth tebyg i Gwmllynfell a Godre'rhos; ac o barch i henaint Mr. Davies, yr oedd pawb yn sefyll draw; ond er y cwbl aeth y bobl yn mlaen, a gorphenwyd y ty yn hardd a phrydferth. Y mae yn mesur drosto 35 wrth 28 o droedfeddi, 20 o uchder, ac oriel helaeth ynddo. Rhoddwyd corau ynddo, ac anrhegwyd ef ag awrlais ardderchog gan Mr. Jones, Fountain Hall. Er fod yn yr ardal amryw grefyddwyr o wahanol fanau, eto nid oedd pawb yn cydymdrechu o blaid y ty newydd. Pobl Cwmllynfell oedd yn gofalu fwyaf, ac nid oeddynt hwythau oil. Y rhai a roddodd eu hysgwyddau dano, ac oedd a chalon i weithio, oedd y rhai canlynol: - Evan Evans, Gilfachyrhaidd; Rees Prise, Ystalyferra, ac Ann ei wraig ; Mary Morgan, Penlanfach; W. Hopkin, henaf, Caregpentwyn, a Mary ei wraig; William Hopkin, ieuengaf, ac Ann ei wraig; Joseph Jones, a'i wraig; John Rees Thomas; Susannah Gibbs; Ann Hopkins, Pantyffynon; W. John, Cwmtawe, a Mary ei wraig; ac Ann Morgan, Cilmangwyn. Yr 16eg yma o Gwmllynfell oedd y gwroniaid a wynebodd ar y gwaith mawr o adeiladu ty i Arglwydd y lluoedd, ynghyd a Robert Todd o Godre'rhos, a'i wraig; Mr. John Jones, Castellnedd, a'r rhan fwyaf o bobl ddigrefydd yr ardal. Aeth y brawd Evan Evans i Abergwili, er cael trwydded (license) i bregethu ynddo-felly y daeth teml i Dduw yn yr ardal yma. Costiodd yr adeilad hardd a chadarn yma rhwng tri a phedwar cant o bunau; a chasglodd y bobl ffyddlon yma hwynt oll oddigerth rhyw 120, a gasglodd yr ysgrifenydd. Yn Mai 1821, agorwyd yr addoldy, a daeth amryw weinidogion yn nghyd, ac yn eu plith Mr. Davies, Alltwen; ac ar derfyn yr addoliad, cododd i fynu a dywedodd, mai PANTTEG a fyddai enw yr addoldy o hyny allan. Boddlonodd y bobl i hyny o enau henaint, er fod ei groesineb ef i'r lle wedi bod yn aflwydd mawr iddynt. Ni phregethodd ef erioed ynddo, dim ond ei enwi a wnaeth yn ei agoriad. Wedi hyny daeth amryw i alw heibio, ac yr oedd y Methodistiaid yn galw mor ami agos a neb. Yr oedd torf yn d'od i wrando, eto heb un eglwys wedi ei ffurfio. Rhagfyr 1821, bu farw Mr. Davies, Alltwen; a thua dechreu y flwyddyn ganlynol, daeth gwasgfa ar feddwl amryw o blant yr ysgol am eu cyflyrau. Annogwyd hwynt i gymeryd eu haelodi yn Nghwmllynfell, lle yr oedd yr hen bobl yn aelodau, ond pallodd y bobl ieuainc, gan ddywedyd mai yno oedd eu lle hwynt, ac mai yno oedd raid eu derbyn; y canlyniad fu iddynt gymhell y Parch. T. Edwards, o Godre'rhos, a'r Parch. James Williams, Tynycoed, i dd'od yno er corffoli eglwys, a derbyn y bobl, 11 eg o rifedi, at yr 16eg, ar y 29ain o Fawrth, 1822. Y misoedd canlynol daeth amryw eraill. Yn mis Mai daeth yr ysgrifenydd o'r Neuaddlwyd, heb fod yn gwbl iach, i dreulio ychydig wythnosau yn yr ardal, a daeth amryw eraill at yr achos yn ysbaid yr haf hwnw. Hydref yr 2il, 1822, rhoddasant alwad unfrydol i'r ysgrifenydd. Yr oeddynt erbyn hyn yn 89, ac yn grefyddwyr ieuainc oll ond 16eg. Wedi hyn aeth pethau rhagddynt yn gysurus, a gorphenwyd talu y ddyled.

Ar y 17eg o Fai, 1824, bu farw un o'r aelodau, o'r enw John Evans, Craigarw, a dymunodd gael ei gladdu wrth y Pantteg, er nad oedd yno un fynwent wedi ei chau i fynu, ond lle garw cerygog, ag oedd ryw amser wedi llithro bendramwnwgl yn bridd ac yn geryg fel coffrau mawrion. Beth bynag, claddwyd ef y tu dwyreiniol i'r ty addoliad, a chladdwyd eraill yn fuan o du'r gorllewin i'r addoldy. Wrth weled y lle mor ddiffaeth o arw, a sel y bobl am orwedd wrth yr addoldy, penderfynodd yr ysgrifenydd ac eraill, os oedd modd, i wneyd lle addas i roi y meirw i orwedd; felly digaregwyd y tir saith troedfedd o ddyfnder, a rhoddwyd gwal yn y ddaear mor isel a gwaelod y fynwent, 7 troedfedd dan wyneb y tir, a muriwyd o amgylch y lle claddu oll. Costiodd hyn i'r gynnulleidfa dros 35. Symudwyd y brawd John Evans i'r fynwent. Mae'r beddau wedi eu trefnu yn rhesau union o'r naill ochr i'r llall, ac y mae yn gorwedd yno rhwng dau a thri chant o feirwon wedi peidio a'u cyffro. Yn fuan ar ol hyn aeth traul arall ar yr eglwys, sef adeiladu dau dy annedd wrth dalcen yr addoldy, er diddosi talcen y ty, yr hwn oedd yn gollwng dwfr-costiodd hyn gryn swm o arian. Ar ol hyn adeiladwyd ysgoldy, ty i'r ysgol feistr, ac ystabl, ar gwr eithaf tir yr eglwys. Wedi hyny ychwanegwyd dau room at dy yr ysgolfeistr, ac fe aeth at y cwbl amryw ugeiniau o bunau. Yn ysbaid y blynyddau yma, bu yr Arglwydd yn dda wrth ei achos yn y Pantteg, er i amryw farw a symud, eto cynyddodd yr eglwys i ganoedd, a meddyliwyd am gymuno ar y gallery-helaethwyd peth ar hono, gan fwriadu helaethu y ty. Wedi hir siarad ac ymgynghori, daethom i benderfyniad i adeiladu ty newydd, a gadael yr hen i sefyll er cynal addoliad, a'i droi at ddybenion eraill wedi hyny.

Yn y flwyddyn 1841, adeiladwyd ty eang, hardd, a chadarn, yn mesur 52 wrth 36 o droedfeddi drosto. Mae iddo oriel helaeth, 61 o gorau ar y llawr, 2 ddrws, a 14 o ffenestri. Costiodd yr adeilad hwn ynghyd a'r mur a'r palisade sydd o'i flaen, yn agos i 600, y rhai a gasglwyd oll yn ol ystyr flaenaf yr Egwyddor Wirfoddol; oblegid ni fuwyd gymaint a cherdded yr ardal-dim ond siarad o'r pwlpud a thano-ni orfodwyd neb mewn dim, ond rhydd ac ewyllysgar offrymau i'r Arglwydd. Talwyd yr holl draul mewn ysbaid chwech mlynedd, ac y mae heddyw yn rhydd, heb geiniog o ddyled du arno.

Yn 1846, rhoddwyd llofft ar yr hen addoldy er cadw ysgol ynddo, ac mae wedi ei gyfleu yn ysgoldy eang ac ardderchog heddyw, ac un Mr. Williams, o Ysgol Normalaidd Aberhonddu, yn addysgu o gylch cant o blant yn ngwahanol ranau dysgeidiaeth. Mae'r Ysgol Frytanaidd yma yn gwbl yn llaw eglwys y Pantteg, heb un blaid arall yn cynorthwyo, na dim grant gan neb iddi. Mae iddi drysorydd, ysgrifenydd, a phwyllgor o aelodau y Pantteg, ac eiddo yr eglwys yw y llyfrau oll. Mae llawr yr hen addoldy wedi ei wneyd yn dy annedd y naill ran, a'r rhan arall yn lle hardd, lle yr ymgynull cymdeithas y bobl ieuainc i ddarllen; mae ganddynt lyfr-gell wych at eu gwasanaeth, ac yno yr ymgynullant yn nosweithiol i'w reading-room. Mae yr hen ysgoldy a'r ystabl wedi eu troi yn dai annedd, ac felly mae traul o amryw ugeiniau o bunau wedi myned at bob peth yn ysbaid y saith mlynedd ar hugain diweddaf, eto nid oes neb yn grwgnach. Gallwn weled fod achos Duw yn y lle uchod wedi cael ei roddi ar y fath sefyllfa, ac yn y fath fodd, ag y gellir dysgwyl llwyddiant arno yn y blynyddau dyfodol-'' Ond os yr Arglwydd nid adeilada y ty, ofer y llafuria ei adeiladwyr;" ac nid adeilada'r Arglwydd 'mo hono, os na lafuria ei adeiladwyr hefyd.

O barth i eglwys y Pantteg, nid yw o oedran ag y gall fod wedi enwogi ei hun ag amryw hynodion; er hyny, y mae wedi cael y fraint o roesawi y gymanfa bedair-sirol, ac amryw gyfarfodydd mawrion eraill; mae wedi cael yr enw mawr o fod yn cadw undeb yr Ysbryd yn nghwlwm tangnefedd; mae gyda'r blaenaf o ran ei llais o blaid santeiddio dydd Duw, ac o blaid Dirwest, ac y mae y rhan fwyaf o'i blaenoriaid yn Ddirwestwyr da; ac mae ynddi lawer o ymdrech gyda'r canu cerddgar a soniarus. Rhenir llafur yr eglwys i bedwar dosbarth er cynal cyfarfodydd gweddio, ysgolion Sabothol, a chyfeillachau crefyddol.

Dymunaf i Haul mawr y Cyfiawnder drigo uwchben y lle hwn hyd nes y machludo haul y byd yma, a bendith bryniau tragywyddoldeb a ddisgyno ar y rhai fyddo yn addoli yma hyd nes cael llwch ac esgyrn fy anwyl ffryndiau o'r gladdfa, ac yna rhoed ef y lle i dan, os hyny fydd da yn ei olwg."

Ymddengys oddiwrth yr hanes blaenorol, mai yn hytrach yn groes i feddwl Mr. Davies o'r Alltwen yr adeiladwyd capel y Pantteg. Yr oedd gwrthwynebiad i helaethu terfynau yr achos yn cael ei ddangos gan y rhan fwyaf o hen weinidogion yr oesau o'r blaen, am y tybient, fel y mae lle i gasglu, fod cerdded ffordd bell i le o addoliad yu brawf nodedig o rym cariad a sel grefyddol.

Yn y flwyddyn 1849, bu ychwanegiad dirfawr at yr eglwys hon. Derbyniodd Mr. Griffiths, ar un boreu Sabboth, 209 trwy ddeheulaw cymdeithas i gymundeb eglwysig. Derbyniwyd yma drachefn amryw ugeiniau yn 1867. Yn y flwyddyn 1865, cafodd y capel ei adeiladu y drydedd waith dan arolygiad Mr. John Morgan, Penlanfach, un o'r diaconiaid. Nid oedd y draul, o herwydd gofal a gwybodaeth Mr. Morgan, ond 700p., ond y mae y capel mor eang a hardd a'r capeli y telir yn gyffredin 1200p. am danynt. Cynaliwyd cyfarfodydd yr agoriad Medi 24ain a'r 25ain, 1865, pryd y pregethodd Meistri D. Davies, New Inn; W. Morgan, Maesteg; T. Rees, D.D., Abertawy; H. Oliver, B.A., Pontypridd; D. Price, Aberdar; W. Jones, Abertawy; J. Roberts, Castellnedd, ac eraill. Talwyd dros haner y draul cyn diwedd cyfarfodydd yr agoriad, ac y mae y gweddill wedi eu talu er's amser bellach. Yn niwedd y flwyddyn 1866, rhoddodd Mr. Griffiths, o'r Alltwen ofal yr eglwys hon i fyny, ar ol bod yn weinidog iddi am bedair-blynedd-a-deugain. Helaethrwydd dirfawr maes ei lafur, ei henaint, a'r ystyriaeth fod y Pantteg bellach yn ddigon galluog i gynal gweinidog ei hun, a barodd iddo ddyfod i'r penderfyniad hwn. Yn haf y flwyddyn 1867, rhoddwyd galwad i Mr. John Jenkins, Treffynon, yr hwn a fu yma hyd ddiwedd 1868, pryd y symudodd i gapel Seion, Abertawy. Yn niwedd y flwyddyn 1870, rhoddwyd galwad i Mr. E. Trefor Jones, Meifod, Maldwyn, y gweinidog presenol. Cynaliwyd cyfarfod ei sefydliad Chwefror 22ain a'r 23ain, 1871, pryd y pregethwyd ar natur eglwys gan Mr. B. Williams, Canaan; gweddiwyd am fendith ar yr undeb gan yr hen weinidog, Mr. Griffiths, o'r Alltwen; pregethodd Dr. Rees, Abertawy, siars i'r gweinidog, a Mr. Johns, Llanelli, siars i'r eglwys.

Y pregethwyr a godwyd yn yr eglwys hon ydynt,-Benjamin Thomas, gweinidog yr eglwys yn y Gurnos. Thomas Evans, Talgarth, a John Clee, gwr ieuangc gobeithiol iawn, yr hwn a fu farw ar gychwyniad ei fywyd cyhoeddus."

Translation by Maureen Saycell (Feb 2008)

"In the Diwygiwr for 1848, page 15, there is a fairly full history given for this church. It was written by Mr P.Griffiths, Alltwen, who was better equipped to do so than anyone else alive, and we quote in full what was written by him.

"Pantteg stands alongside the main road in Cwmtawe, twelve miles from Swansea, in the parish of Llangiwg, Glamorganshire. In this area a small house had been built by the local people to hold a day school, the land was donated by the respected F. Gough, Ynysgedwyn, free while there was water running in the river Tawe. There were many religious people living in the vicinity, some from Alltwen, Godre'rhos and Cwmllynfell, they held prayer meetings on week nights, and on Sunday afternoons, and occasional preaching in Penpont-yr-ystrad, Glan'rhyd, Ystalyfera Uchaf and so on, but not one cause had been established. A Sunday school was started in the area, it was held in the old school-house. In the meantime, (that is around 1818), the late Reverend Daniel Griffiths, then of Felin-y-cwrt, a spirited and talented young man came to preach occasionally, and he was invited to come every month. He revived the school, increased those listening, and the school-house and all the houses in the area became too small to hold the congregation, we had to be outside - and the writer was outside nearly every time until there was a chapel. From these apparent signs of success, it was thought about, talked about, and discussed to find a larger more convenient place to worship, and that occasionally, and they came to a decision to acquire a place of worship. Mr John Jones, Fountain Hill, a supervisor on the Cwmtawe Canal (a member of Neath), who lived in the area, and a man with knowledge of building, advice was taken from him, and he went to see Mr Gough, of Ynysgedwyn on their behalf and he acquired a large piece of land for building, in a convenient place near the main road on Alltgrug common, in Graigarw, and not far from the old school-house. The above gentleman leased it for nine hundred and ninety nine years for sixpence a year, if it was requested. And  therefore it was transferred to the trustees ; Messrs Jones, Fountain Hall; Thomas Harper, Pontardawe Cottage; Thomas Morgans, Penlanfach; Evan Evans, Gilfachyrhaidd; Rees Prise, Ystalyferra Isaf; Hezekiah Evans, Gwrid, and W. Evans, Cwmnantllicu. After securing the place, the building work began, there was a big effort to get the materials together, the carrying was done night and day, and starlight was used to light the way for those carrying materials to this temple. Subscriptions were made, and collections were made by the members through many areas and without any support from ministers or preachers. The Reverend John Davies, Alltwen had judged that the chapel was not needed, and that they could walk the four miles to Alltwen, or something similar to Cwmllynfell or Godre'rhos, and out of sympathy for Mr Davies' advanced age, everyone stepped back, but despite that the people carried on, and the house was completed beautifully. It measures over thirty five feet by twenty eight, and twenty feet high, and with a large gallery inside. Seats were installed, and a beautiful clock was gifted by Mr Jones, Fountain Hall. Despite the fact that there were many religious people from various places, no one cooperated to back the new house. The people of Cwmllynfell did most, but not all of them. The ones who put their shoulders and their hearts into it were the following:- Evan Evans, Gilfachyrhaidd; Rees Prise, Ystalyfera, and Ann his wife ; Mary Morgan, Penlanfach; W. Hopkin, the older, Caregpentwyn, and Mary his wife; William Hopkin, the younger, and Ann his wife; Joseph Jones, and his wife; John Rees Thomas; Susannah Gibbs; Ann Hopkins, Pantyffynon; W. John, Cwmtawe, and Mary his wife; and Ann Morgan, Cilmangwyn. These sixteen from Cwnllynfell were the heroes who faced the hard work of building the house for the Lord of Hosts, as well as Robert Todd, Godre'rhos, and his wife; Mr John Jones, Neath, and most of the non-religious people of the area. The brother Evan Evans went to Abergwili, to get a license to preach in it - and so God's temple came to this area. This strong and beautiful building cost between three and four hundred pounds, and the faithful collected about 120, given to the writer. In May 1821, the chapel was opened, many ministers came together, including Mr Davies, Alltwen, and at the end of worship he stood up and said that the name of this house of worship would henceforth be PANTTEG. The people were satisfied with this spoken from old age, despite the fact that his lack of support had caused them major problems. He never preached there, only named it at the opening. After that many came calling and the Methodists came as often as anyone. A crowd would come to listen, but still no church was formed. In December 1821, Mr Davies, Alltwen died, and the beginning of the following year, their condition began to press on the minds of the school children. They were encouraged to become members in Cwmllynfell, where the older people were members, but the young people refused, saying that this was where they should be, and this was where they would be confirmed, following this they asked Reverend T. Edwards, Godre'rhos, and Reverend James Williams, Tynycoed, to come and establish the church there, and to confirm the people, eleven of them, on the 16th and 29th of March, 1822. In the following months many more came. During May the writer from Neuaddlwyd, who was not in the best of health, to spend a few weeks in the area, and many others came to the cause that summer. On October 2nd, 1822, they gave an united call to the writer. There were eighty nine by then, and all but sixteen were young. After this things moved on comfortably, and the debt was paid off.

On the 17th of May, 1824, John Evans, Craigarw, one of the members, died and wished to be buried by Pantteg, although there was no enclosed cemetery there, only rough stony ground, which at some point had slipped with all the soil loose and stones as big as large coffers. Anyway he was buried to the east of the church, and soon more were soon buried to the west of the church. Seeing the place so depressingly rough, and the people so keen to be laid to rest by the chapel, the writer and others decided that if there was a way, to make the place suitable for the dead to lie in, it would be done, therefore the stones were removed to a depth of seven feet, and a wall was built to the depth of the cemetery, seven feet deep and the whole boundary of the cemetery was walled in. This cost the congregation over 35. The brother John Evans was moved to the cemetery. The graves have been laid out in straight lines from side to side, and resting there are between two and three hundred who lie at peace. Soon after this another heavy financial load came upon the church, that was to build two dwelling houses on the end of the chapel, and to mend the gable end of the chapel, which was leaking water, this cost a fair sum of money. After that a school was built, and a house for the schoolmaster, and a stable on the furthest end of the church ground. Later two rooms were added to the schoolmaster's house, and it all came to many twenties of pounds.

During this time, the Lord was kind to the cause in Pantteg, although many died or moved away, the church membership grew to hundreds, and it was decided to tidy and extend the gallery, with the intention of enlarging the chapel. After a great deal of discussion and taking advice, we decided to build a new house of worship, while leaving the old one standing in order to hold services, and then be used for other purposes after that.

In the year 1841, a large, beautiful and strong chapel was built, measuring fifty two feet by thirty six feet. It has an extensive gallery, sixty one pews downstairs, two doors, and fourteen windows. The building along with the wall and palisade in the front, cost around 600, which was all collected in the true meaning of the Voluntary Code, because there was no walking around the area, only speaking from the pulpit, and no one was forced into anything, only free and willing offerings to the Lord. All the debt was paid within six years, and today it is free, without a penny's debt on it.

In 1846, an upstairs was added to the old chapel so that a school could be held there, and it has been converted to a large and impressive school today, and one Mr Williams, from Brecon Normal College, is teaching about one hundred children at various stages of their education. This British School is in the total control of Pantteg, without any support from any other party, and no grant aid. There is a treasurer, secretary, and a council of the members of Pantteg, and the church owns all of the books. The ground floor has been converted to a dwelling on one side and the other a pleasant meeting place for young people to read, they have a good Library at their service, they meet there in the reading room.

The old schoolhouse and stable have been converted into dwelling houses, therefore many twenties of pounds have been spent over the last twenty seven years, but nobody complains. We can see that the Lord's cause is in a situation that, in such a way, success can be expected in the years to come-  "If the Lord does not build the house, the efforts of the builders are wasted"- and the Lord does not build it, unless the builders do not work also.

On behalf of the church of Pantteg, it has not been around long enough to be counted among the distinguished, although it has had the honour of hosting the Four Shires Festival, and many other big events, it has gained a reputation for keeping the union of the Spirit tied in with peace, it is with the foremost in calling for the Lord's Day to be kept holy, and in favour of Temperance and most of the deacons believe strongly in Temperance, and there are many here who make an effort to sing musically and harmoniously. The work of the church is divided into four classes in order to hold prayer meetings, Sunday school and religious associations.

I wish the large Sun of Righteousness to stay in this place until the sun sets on this world, and the blessings of the hills of eternity descend on those who worship here, until the ashes and bones of my beloved friends from the cemetery, and the set the place on fire , if that is good in his sight."

It appears from the above history, that it was against the wishes of Mr Davies from Alltwen that the chapel at Pantteg was built. There were objections to expanding the boundaries of the cause by most of the older ministers in time gone by, because they felt, the catchment area, and walking long distances to places of worship were proof of a strong love and religious zeal.

In 1849, there was a large addition to this church. Mr Griffiths confirmed 209 into membership of the church, to holy communion, on one Sunday morning. In 1867 there were many more confirmed. In the year 1865 the chapel was built for the third time under the supervision of Mr John Morgan, Penlanfach, one of the deacons. The cost was no more than 700, thanks to the care and knowledge of Mr Morgan, but the chapel is as large and beautiful as those where 1,200 has been spent. The opening services were held on September 24th and 25th 1865, sermons were given by Messrs D. Davies, New Inn; W. Morgan, Maesteg; T. Rees, D.D., Swansea; H. Oliver, B.A., Pontypridd; D. Price, Aberdare; W. Jones, Swansea; J. Roberts, Neath, and others.More than half the debt had been cleared before the end of the opening services, and the remainder has long since been cleared. At the end of 1866, Mr Griffiths Alltwen, gave up the pastoral care for this church after ministering to it for forty four years. . The wide field of his labours, old age and the fact that Pantteg was now capable of supporting it's own minister, these were factors in his decision. In the summer of 1867, a call was sent to Mr John Jenkins, Treffynnon, who was here until the end of 1868, when he moved to Seion chapel, Swansea.

At the end of 1870, a call was sent to Mr E. Trefor Jones, Meifod, Montgomeryshire, the current minister. His induction was held on February 22nd and 23rd, 1871 when a sermon on the nature of a church was given by Mr B. Williams, Canaan; a prayer for the union to be blessed was given by the old minister Mr Griffiths, Alltwen. Dr Rees, Swansea preached a challenge to the minister, and Mr Johns, Llanelli a challenge to the church.

The preachers raised in this church are:-

 

 


Cwmllynfell

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(Vol 2, p 144)

" Saif yr addoldy hwn yn mhlmyf Llanguwg, Morgnnwg, ond o fewn ychydig latheni i derfyn plwvf Llangadog, sir Gaerfyrddin, ac yn dra agos hefyd i blwyf Ystradgynlais, yn sir Frycheiniog. Mae yn dra sicr i'r achos yn y lle hwn gael ei ddechreu yn foreu yn amser yr Anghydffurfwyr, ond yr ydym wedi methu dyfod o hyd i amser ei ddechreuad, nac enwau neb o'i gychwynwyr. "Tybir mai un o'r enw Phillips oedd y gweinidog cyntaf yn Nghwmllynfell, ac iddo gael ei ganlyn gan John Llewellyn, a Llewellyn Bevan."[1] Ni ddigwyddodd i ni daro wrth enwau Mr. Phillips na Mr. John Llewellyn mewn unrhyw gofnodiad argraffedig nac ysgrifenedig, ond yn unig yn llawysgrif Mr. Pryse, ond y mae enw Llewellyn Bevan i'w gyfarfod yn aml mewn hen lawysgrifau. Yr oedd ef yn weinidog yn Nghwmllynfell, y Gellionen, a Gwynfe, yn 1715, ac o bosibl amryw flynyddau cyn hyny. Yr oedd y tair cynnulleidfa hyn, mae yn debyg o'r dechreuad, dan yr un weinidogaeth, ac yn 1715, yr oeddynt yn nghyd yn chwech chant o rif, a'r aelodau yn meddu naw-ar-hugain o bleidleisiau dros siroedd Morganwg, Caerfyrddin, a Brycheiniog. Yr ydym ynanhysbys o amsermarwolaeth Llewellyn Bevan, ond yr oedd Roger Howell yn gydweinidog ag ef yn 1715, a pharhaodd i weinidogaethu yma hyd ei farwolaeth yn 1742. Mae yn debygol i Joseph Simmons gael ei urddo yma yn gydweinidog a Roger Howell tuag amser marwolaeth Llewellyn Bevan, a pharhaodd ef i wasanaethu i'r eglwys hon a'r Gellionen, hyd nes iddo gymeryd gofal yr eglwys yn Maesyrhaf, Castellnedd, tua'r flwyddyn 1751. Nid ydym yn deall fod un gweinidog sefydlog wedibod yma ar ol ei ymadawiad ef nes i William Evans gael ei urddo yn Nghastellnedd fel gweinidog cynorthwyol yn 1754. Yr oedd ef yn gwasanaethu yr eglwysi yn Rhydymardy a'r Cwmmawr ddau Sabboth o bob mis, a'r Brychgoed am un Sabboth o'r mis am rai blynyddau, a thebyg mai ei fam-eglwys yn Nghwmllynfell oedd yn cael ei wasanaeth ar y Sabboth arall. Bu Mr. Evan Williams, o'r Brychgoed, a Mr. Lewis Rees, Mynyddbach, yn rhoddi rhan o'u gweinidogaeth i bobl Cwmllynfell rhwng 1757 a 1769, ond mae yn debygol mai fel cynorthwywyr i Mr. William Evans yr oeddynt hwy yn ymweled a'r lle, oblegid yr oedd y cynnulleidfaoedd yn Nghwmtawy, Cwmaman, a'r Alltwen dan ei ofal ef, yn gystal a Chwmllynfell, Rhydymardy, a'r Cwmmawr. Er dirfawr golled i'r eglwys, a'r wlad yn gyffredinol, bu farw y gweinidog gweithgar hwn yn bedair-ar-ddeg-a-deugain oed, yn 1770. Dywedir iddo ar ei wely angau gynghori pobl Cwmllynfell, yr Alltwen, a Chwmaman, i roddi galwad i Mr. John Davies, Pentre-ty-gwyn, i fod yn ganlyniedydd iddo ef, yr hyn a wnaethant. Dechreuodd Mr. Davies ei weinidogaeth yma yn 1771, a pharhaodd i lafurio yma gyda pharch a dylanwad mawr hyd 1821, pryd y bu farw mewn henaint teg. Yn fuan wedi marwolaeth Mr. Davies, rhoddodd yr eglwysi yn Nghwmllynfell a Chwmaman alwad i Mr. John Rowlands, Llanybri, a bu yntau yma yn barchus a rhyfeddol o boblogaidd hyd ei farwolaeth ddisymwth yn Mai 1834. Ar ol bod tua blwyddyn heb un gweinidog sefydlog, rhoddodd eglwys Cwmllynfell alwad i Mr. Rhy Pryse, Llanwrtyd, ac urddwyd ef Awst 19eg a'r 20fed, 1835. Ar yr achlysur traddodwyd y gynaraeth gan Mr. D. Evans, Cwmwysg; holwyd y gofniadau gan Mr. W. Davies Llanymddyfri ; dyfchafwyd yr urdd-weddi gan Mr. H. Herbert, Drefnewydd ; pregethwyd i'r gweinidog gan Mr. D. Williams, Llanwrtyd, ac i'r eglwys gan Mr. P. Griffiths, Alltwen.[2] Bu yn enwog a llwyddianus iawn yma hyd derfyn ei oes. Yn fuan ar ol ei sefydliad ef yn Nghwmllynfell adeiladwyd capel a chorpholwyd eglwys yn Mryaman, yr hon sydd er's llawer o flynyddoedd bellach yn eglwys gref a blodeuog iawn. Ar farwolaeth Mr. Pryse, rhanwyd cylch ei weinidogaeth a chymerodd pob un o'r eglwysi weinidogion iddynt eu hunain. Rhoddodd eglwys Cwmllynfell alwad i Mr. John Rees, myfyriwr yn athrofa y Bala, ac urddwyd ef yma Medi 28ain a'r 29ain, 1870. Pregethwyd ar natur eglwys gan Mr. W. E. Evans, Capel Seion ; gofynwyd yr holiadau arferol gan Mr. W. Williams, Hirwaun ; gweddiodd Mr. P. Griffiths, Alltwen, am fendith ar yr undeb ; rhoddwyd siars i'r gweinidog gan Mr. J. Peter, Bala, ac i'r eglwys gan Dr. T. Rees, Abertawy.[3] Efe yw y gweinidog yn bresenol. Yr ydym yn hyderu y pery yntau, fel ei ragflaenoriaid enwog, i lafurio yn dderbyniol a llwyddianus yma hyd derfyn ei yrfa. Nid oes genym hanes fod neb, ond Mr. Joseph Simmons, o weinidogion yr eglwys hon wedi ei gadael nes iddynt gael eu lluddias gan farwolaeth i barhau.

Nid ydym wedi gallu dyfod o hyd i amseriad adeiladiad y capel cyntaf. Adeiladwyd yr ail gapel yn 1814, a chafodd ei adgyweirio a'i ad-drefnu yn 1823. Yn 1860, tynwyd yr hen gapel i lawr ac adeiladwyd yr un helaeth presenol. Yn yr un flwyddyn hefyd, adeiladwyd ty helaeth yn Nghwmtwrch, yr hwn a elwir y Temperance Hall, lle y cedwir Ysgol Sabbothol, cyfeillachau crefyddol, cyfarfodydd gweddio, a phregethu achlysurol.

Gellir ystyried yr holl eglwysi Annibynol a Methodistaidd o Flaen-glyn-tawy i Gwmaman, ac o Odrerhos a Phontardawy i Frynaman, fel canghenau uniongyrchol neu anuniongyrchol o'r hen fam-eglwys yn Nghwmllynfell, ac er yr holl ganghenau a aethant allan o honi, mae yr hen eglwys yn awr yn gryfach a lluosocach nag y bu erioed. Un cylch gweinidogaethol, os nad un eglwys y cyfrifid Cwmllynfell a'r Gellionen hyd tua y flwyddyn 1767, pryd p ymsefydlodd Mr. Josiah Rees yn y Gellionen, ac yr aeth y gynnulleidfa hono i gael ei chyfrif yn Arminaidd, ac o radd i radd aeth yn Ariaidd, ac er's mwy na thriugain mlynedd bellach yn hollol Undodaidd. Pan oedd y cynnulleidfaoedd yn y Gellionen a Chwmllynfell dan yr un weinidogaeth yr oedd ganddynt gapel bychan yn Fforchegel, ar fin y mynydd, tua haner y ffordd rhwng y ddau le. Cafodd amryw eu claddu yno. Wedi ymraniad y ddwy gynnulleidfa, aeth y capel yn Fforchege1 yn ddiddefnydd, gan nad yw yn debygol y gallasent mwyach gyduno i'w gyd-ddefnyddio yn lle addoliad ar brydnawn Sabbothau, fel y gwnelent gynt. Nid oes yn awr yn Fforchegel unrhyw olion o'r hen addoldy, ond ychydig ddarnau drylliedig o'r hen fedd-feini ; ond y mae capel Carmel, Rhydyfro, a'r Gwryd yn mwy na llenwi lle yr hen fan gysegredig hwnw.

Mae yn ddiameu fod llawer iawn o bregethwyr wedi cyfodi yn yr hen eglwys hon o oes i oes, ond yr ydym wedi methu a dyfod o hyd i enwau nemawr o'r rhai a gyfodwyd yma yn nhymor boreuaf yr achos. Mae yn dra thebyg mai aelodau gwreiddiol o'r eglwys hon oedd Llewellyn Bevan, a Roger Howell, y rhai a fuont am flynyddau yn weinidogion yma, ac y mae yn sicr mae yma y cyfo dwyd William Evans. Daw pob un o honynt hwy dan sylw etto.

Mae lluaws o aelodau yr eglwys hon yn deilwng o'u coff hau ar gyfrif eu rhagoriaeth fel crefyddwyr, ond ni oddefa ein terfynau i ni enwi ond ychydig o honynt. Yr oedd Mr. John Jones, Brynbrain, tad-yn-nghyfraith Mr. Rowlands a Mr. Pryse, yn un o ragorolion y ddaear. Yr oedd yn grefyddwr rhagorol, ac yn ddefnyddiol, haelionus, a digyffelyb o ddylanwadol. Bu ei dy yn agored i weision Crist o bell ag agos am fwy na haner canrif. Bu ef farw tua phymtheng-mlynedd-ar-hugain yn ol. Yn ddiweddar y claddwyd ei weddw rhagorol, pryd yr oedd yn agos i gan' mlwydd oed. Yr oedd Ezeciel, Daniel, a Benjamin Evans, meibion yr hen weinidog, William Evans, yn ddynion nodedig yn eu hoes fel crefyddwyr. Nid yn fuan yr anghofir enwau Edward William, Glyncynwelisaf; Richard Bowen, Dorwen; Owen Bowen, Penywern; Sion Gwilym, Thomas William, Cwmtwrch; Dafydd William, Ddolgam; Dafydd Sion Lewis, William J. Thomas, Felinfach; Dafydd Isaac, Y Dderi; John Harries, Coedffalde; Griffith T. Williams, a Lewis Rowlands. Rhagorai rhai o'r gwyr hyn yn eu doniau fel gweddiwyr, eraill yn eu medr i drafod achosion eglwysig, ac eraill fel blaenoriaid y gan; ac y mae pob sail i gredu eu bod oll heddyw yn nghymanfa a chynnulleidfa y rhai cyntafanedig.

Mae eglwys Cwmllynfell nid yn unig wedi gofalu am gynal gweinidogaeth efengylaidd yn yr ardal am fwy na dau gant o flynyddau, ond y mae hefyd er's llawer o flynyddau wedi gofalu am ysgol ddyddiol i blant y gymydogaeth. Adeiladwyd ysgoldy yn ymyl y capel yn 1804, a chafodd ei helaethu wedi hyny ddwy waith. Mae yn bresenol yn ysgoldy eang a chyfleus, ac ysgol effeithiol yn cael ei chynal ynddo.[4]

[1] Llawysgrif Mr. R. Pryse

[2] Diwygiwr, 1836. Tu dal. 275.

[3] Tyst Cymreig, Hydref 7fed, 1870.

[4] Yr ydym yn ddyledus am lawer o'r ffeithiau uchod i'r hen batriarch ffyddlon John Herbert, yr hwn sydd yn aelod yn y lle er's wyth-mlynedd-a-deugain, ac yn swyddwr er's deuddeg-ar-hugain. Er ei fod yn agos i bedwar ugain oed, y mae yn hynod o fywiog mewn corph a meddwl. Ni ddylem hefyd anghofio cydnabod ein rhwymau i'n cyfaill llafurus Mr. John Jones, ysgrifenydd yr eglwys; dyn cymharol ieuangc, ond yn ymdrechgar rhyfeddol gyda'r achos goreu, er yn cael ei analluogi yn fawr gan gystudd.

 

Translation by Eleri Rowlands (Nov 2008)

This place of worship stands in the parish of Llangiwg, Glamorgan, but within a few yards of the parish of Llangadog, Carmarthenshire, and very close too to the parish of Ystradgynlais, Breconshire.  It is pretty certain that the cause in this place started in the early days of non-conformism, but we have failed to date it precisely or to find the names of the originators. "It is thought that a man by the name of Phillips was the first minister in Cwmllynfell, and that he was followed by John Llewellyn, and Llewellyn Bevan"[1] We have not come across the names of Mr Phillips nor Mr John Llewelyn in any printed or written document, only in Mr Pryse' document, but the name of Llewellyn Bevan is often seen in old documents.  He was a minister in Cwmllynfell, Gellionen and Gwynfe in 1715, and possibly for several years before that.  Apparently, from the beginning, these three congregations shared the ministry and in 1715, they were, together, six hundred in number, and the members possessed twenty nine votes over the counties of Glamorgan, Carmarthen and Breconshire. We are unsure of the time of Llewellyn Bevan's death, but Roger Howell was co-working with him in 1715 and carried on ministering here till his death in 1742.  Apparently, Joseph Simmons was ordained here as a co-minister with Roger Howells around the time of Llewellyn Bevan's death, and he continued to minister to this church and Gellionen until he took the care of Maesyrhaf, Neath, around 1751.  We understand that there was no settled minister here after he left until William Evans was ordained in Neath as a lay preacher in 1754. He ministered to the churches in Rhydymardy and Cwmmawr on two Sundays in every month, and Brychgoed on one Sunday in the month for some years, and it is likely that his mother-church in Cwmllynfell had his ministry on the other Sunday in the month. Between 1757 and 1769 Mr Evan Williams, from Brychgoed and Mr Lewis Rees, Mynyddbach gave some of their ministry to the people of Cwmllynfell, but it is likely that it was as assistants to Mr William Evans that they visited the place, since the congregations of the Tawe Valley, the Aman Valley and Alltwen were under his care, along with Cwmllynfell, Rhydymardy and Cwmmawr. It was a great loss to the church and the country in general when this hard working minister died at the age of fifty four in 1770.  It is said that on his death bed he advised the people of Cwmllynfell, Alltwen and Cwmaman to call Mr John Davies, Pentre-ty-gwyn, to be his successor, which they did.  Mr Davies started his ministry here in 1771, and continued his labours with respect and great influence until 1821, when he died at a fair age.  Soon after the death of Mr Davies, the church in Cwmllynfell and Cwmaman sent out a call to John Rowlands, Llanybri, and he stayed here with respect and was extremely popular till his untimely death in May 1834.  The church was without a settled minister for a year after this and the church in Cwmllynfell then called Mt Rhys Pryse, Llanwrtyd, and he was ordained on August 19th and 20th, 1835.  On that occasion, the first sermon was delivered by Mr D. Evans, Cwmwysg; the questions were asked by Mr W. Davies, Llandovery; the ordination prayer was delivered by Mr H. Herbert, Newtown; Mr D. Williams, Llanwrtyd preached to the minister, and Mr P. Griffiths, Alltwen, preached to the church.[2]  He was well-known and successful here for the rest of his life.  Soon after his induction here in Cwmllynfell, a chapel was built and a church established in Brynaman, which has been a strong, flourishing church for some years now.  On the death of Mr Pryse, his ministry was divided and each church took ministers of its own.  The church in Cwmllynfell called Mr John Rees, a student in Bala college, and he was ordained on September 28th and 29th, 1870.  Mr W.E. Evans, Capel Seion, preached on the nature of the church; the usual questions were asked by Mr W. Williams, Hirwaun; Mr P. Griffiths, Alltwen, prayed for a blessing on the union; the challenge to the minister was given by Mr J. Peter, Bala, and to the church by Mr T. Rees, Swansea.[3] He is the present minister. We are confident that he, like his famous predecessor, will labour acceptably and successfully here till the end of his career.  We have no history that anyone, apart from Mr Joseph Simmons, from the ministers of this church that have left  before he was prevented from continuing by death.

We have not discovered the time of building the first chapel.  The second chapel was built in 1814, and was repaired and re-organised in 1823.  In 1860, the old chapel was pulled down and the present larger one, was built. In the same year too, a larger house was built in Cwmtwrch which was called the Temperance Hall, where the Sunday school, religious associations, prayer meetings and occasional preaching were held.  All the Independent and Methodist churches from Blaen-glyn-tawe to Glanaman, and from Godrerhos and Pontardawe to Brynaman can be considered as direct or indirect  branches of the old mother church in Cwmllynfell, and even though so many branches have gone forth from her, the old church is now stronger and more numerous than ever.   Cwmllynfell and Gellionen was considered as one ministerial circuit if not as one church until the year 1767 when Mr Josiah Rees in Gellionen was inducted and that congregation was considered as Arminian, and gradually became Arian, and for more than sixty years now completely Unitarian. At the time that the congregations in Gellionen and Cwmllynfell were under the same ministry they had a small chapel in Fforchegel, on the edge of the mountain, about half way between the two places. Many were buried there.  Since the two congregations divided the chapel in Fforchegel was disused as it is not likely that they could work together in its use on Sunday afternoons as they had previously.  Now there is little sign of the old house of worship in Fforchegel apart from the broken pieces of old gravestones;  but the chapels of Carmel, Rhydyfro and Gwryd more than fill the gap left by that holy place.

Undoubtedly, many preachers have been raised in this old church over the generations, but we have been unable to find any of the names of the ones who were raised here in the early days of the cause.  It is quite likely that Llewellyn Bevan and Roger Howell were original members of this church, who were for years ministers here, and it is certain that William Evans was brought up here. Each of these will be brought to notice elsewhere.

Many members of this church are worthy of being remembered for their religious excellence, but we are limited to mention only a few of them.  Mr John Jones, Brynbrain, the father-in-law of Mr Rowlands and Mr Pryse,  was one of these, a salt of the earth.  Ezeciel, Daniel and Benjamin Evans, the sons of the former minister, William Evans. It won't be easy to forget the names of Edward William, Glyncynwelisaf; Richard Bowen, Dorwen; Owen Bowen, Penywern; Sion Gwilym, Thomas William, Cwmtwrch; Dafydd William, Ddolgam; Dafydd Sion Lewis William J. Thomas, Felinfach; Dafydd Isaac, Y Dderi; John Harries, Coedffalde; Griffith T. Williams, and Lewis Rowlands. These excelled.

The church at Cwmllynfell has not only cared for the evangelical ministry in the area for more than two hundred years, but it has also for many years cared for a day school for the children of the community.  A schoolroom was built near the chapel in 1804, and it was extended twice after that.  It is now a large suitable schoolroom and an effective school is held there. [4]

[1] Mr. R. Pryse' document

[2] 'Diwygiwr', 1836. page. 275.

[3] 'Tyst Cymreig', October 7th, 1870.

[4] We are indebted to the old faithful patriarch John Herbert, for many of the above facts. He has been a member in this place for forty eight years, and an official for thirty two years. We cannot forget our connection with our hard-working friend Mr. John Jones, the secretary of the chapel; a fairly young man but very hard-working even though he is hampered by an affliction.

 


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