HANDYSIDE, William 1875 - 1949

Obituary from the Minutes of the Methodist Conference 1950, page 136

Born at Prudhoe, Northumberland, in 1875. With his heart set on entering the Methodist Ministry, he overcame early disadvantages and became a candidate in the year 1901. He was trained at Headingley College, and  ; while still a student had to brace himself against the ill-health which remained with him in varying degrees till the end.

His limitations of physical strength found compensation in unlimited courage and devotion to his circuit duties, and, being no stranger to sorrow, he exercised the gift of true consolation.

He retired after thirty-five years of active work. In all his circuits he showed a complete consecration to tasks both great and small; he was loved by many and respected by all, and everywhere by reason of his quiet resourcefulness and gentle, kindly pastoral ministrations his churches prospered.

Utterly sincere, cheerful, and gracious, he spoke no unkind word and possessed the grace of humility in an unusual measure.

The same traits of character marked his pulpit ministry, and with earnestness and self-effacement he preached truth for truth’s sake and Christ for His greater glory.

His sermons indicated a mind that was well prepared by his own quiet thought. He never aspired to positions of Connexional importance, but rather shrank from any undue recognition of his many gifts. Pretentiousness in every form he hated and the artifices of ambition and conceit were completely foreign to his nature, He combined strength and resourcefulness of character with a gentle self-effacing disposition, and his graciousness will always be remembered by those who knew him.

In his retirement his service was greatly restricted by feeble health, but up till the last he hoped for yet one brief return of vigour when he could serve his Church once more.

Intense suffering followed a major operation, and he passed Home on 27th December 1949, in the seventy-fourth year of his life and the forty-sixth of his ministry.

©Trustees for Methodist Church Purposes 1950

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