LANCASTER
WHITHORN
CARLISLE
CARTMELL
FURNESS
TOGETHER
CUMBRIA AND BORDERS

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Jesus  and  Mary and the Disciples

 

Cumbria Christianity

Anne Dacre
d. 1631 CONFESSOR

Anne was one of the heiresses of Thomas Dacre of Gilsland, who was married to Philip Howard, baron of Greystoke and earl of Arundel. Her life was a way of the cross, a pi1grimage of deeply tested trust. Philip soon left his quiet, young wife for the glamour of Elizabeth's court, where he wasted their money and property to flatter the Queen.

Anne was driven from her home and rumours came to her of infidelities, of doubts cast on the validity of her marriage and always there was the indifference of Philip and the contempt of the Court for her simple goodness.
This part of her pilgrimage lasted about eleven years. Then there was a brief togetherness with Philip which had its own pain and dangers. Anne returned to the full practice of her faith, and Philip was moved by the influence of Edmund Campion to seek reconciliation with the Roman Catholic church. The Queen was furious with rage. Anne had to bear her first child away from home, and, as part of a last, desperate appeasement by Philip, the
child was christened a Protestant and named Elizabeth!
Philip however went boldly and rashly into his new convictions, and minds subtler than his duped him into treasonous plots. For Anne there was to be a new twist on her way of the cross. Philip was thrown into the Tower, to stay for eleven years. She could not visit him and the Queen ordered the gaoler to lie to Philip that his second child was a girl, not the longed-for son and heir. All these years Anne would never see Philip and, as he drew near
to death, only by renouncing their faith would they be allowed to meet. They met in death and lie together at Arundel. Anne lived to 73 years of age revered for good works. Her last cross was the apostasy (during her lifetime) of her son Thomas, again for advancement at Court.
Anne hoped against hope, trusted to the end, with the persistent love of a wife and mother. By a final quirk of providence, her husband Philip was canonised as a martyr in 1970.