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Lever Wood

Lever Wood was minister at Brenchley in Kent, but was much persecuted for nonconformity. Upon the publication of Whitgift's three articles, in 1583, he and sixteen of his brethren, all ministers of Kent, waited upon the archbishop at Lambeth. When they appeared before his grace, they declared that they could not, with a good conscience, subscribe to his articles, and desired to know Whether they might still proceed in their ministry.* But, instead of obtaining his lordship's approbation, they were all immediately suspended, and Mr. Wood, with some others, if not the whole, was cast into prison, where he continued twelve months. At the expiration of that period, upon his subscription as far as the law required, and promising to use the Book of Common Prayer, and no other, he was released from prison.t

His troubles, however, were not over. He still continued under suspension. Therefore, he made interest at court, that he might be restored to his former labours. He applied to Sir Francis Walsingham, secretary of state,J Who interceded with the archbishop for his restoration to his ministry, but without success. Whitgift would not remove the ecclesiastical censure, and allow Mr. Wood to preach, unless he would subscribe without the least reserve, and practise a perfect conformity. ^ And the good man's conscience not allowing him to do this, he remained under suspension at least eight years. He was under his lordship's censure in the year 1591, and whether he was ever restored is extremely doubtful.||

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