Llewellyn Gwynne was a Church Missionary Society (CMS) missionary and bishop in Sudan. A native of Wales, he was ordained in 1886 after studies at London College of Divinity. In 1899, amid continuing British indignation surrounding the death in Sudan of General Charles “Khartoum” Gordon, Gwynne was sent as a missionary to the Sudan under the CMS’s Gordon Memorial Sudan Mission. British officials, however, were unwilling to allow direct evangelization among Sudanese Muslims. Made chaplain to British forces in Sudan, Gwynne displayed an unpretentious style that won favor, and he succeeded in establishing girls’ schools open to Muslims and Christians alike. Named archdeacon of the Sudan in 1905, he oversaw the founding of the first CMS mission in southern Sudan, and in 1908 he became suffragan bishop of Khartoum. He served in France during World War I and became deputy chaplain-general to the British forces. In 1920 he was named the first “Bishop in Egypt and the Sudan,” his diocese stretching from the Mediterranean to Uganda and from Darfur to Aden. Under his initiative, cathedrals were constructed in Khartoum and Cairo. Inspired as much by Gordon’s writings as by the Bible, Gwynne became a venerable symbol of British Christianity in North Africa. He retired in 1946 and returned to England.
Marc R. Nikkel
Numerous articles and sermons by Gwynne are contained in The Sudan Diocesan Review. H. C. Jackson, Pastor on the Nile, Being Some Account of the Life and Letters of Llewellyn H. Gwynne (1960); Brian de Saram, Nile Harvest: The Anglican Church in Egypt and the Sudan, privately published (1992). Most of Gwynne’s papers are held at the CMS archives (Acc. 18), Birmingham Univ. Library, Birmingham, England. A smaller collection is located at the Sudan archive, Univ. of Durham, England.
This article is reproduced, with permission, from Biographical Dictionary of Christian Missions, copyright © 1998, by Gerald H. Anderson, W. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, Grand Rapids, Michigan. All rights reserved.