Today in Catholic History – Thomas More resigns as Lord Chancelor of England

On 16 May 1532, Thomas More resigned from the office of Lord Chancellor due to his refusal to acknowledge Henry VIII as Supreme Head of the English Church “as far as the Law of God allows.” Thomas did this by sending to Henry a pouch containing the great seal of England. More had served as Lord Chancellor for less than three years.

Since this was the day after the English Clergy gave up their authority to formulate laws without the king’s assent, More’s resignation was seen as a criticism of Henry’s move to separate the Church of England from Rome. So, while More was hoping for a quiet life in retirement, Henry wanted More’s support for his actions.

Thomas More would be executed for treason on 6 July 1535.
He would be canonized by Pius XI in 1935.

Thomas More


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