MACHIN, William (M.A.) 1885 - 1962

Obituary from the Minutes of the Methodist Conference 1962, page 211

Born in Stoke-on-Trent in 1885. From the Leys School he went to King’s College, Cambridge, where he was awarded a First in both parts of his Tripos, showing especial promise in Chemistry.

He began research on the properties of iron and might well have achieved a Fellowship. but he gave up this prospect to enter the Wesleyan Methodist Ministry.

In 1909 he was sent by the Missionary Society to teach in a Mission School at Lucknow, and thus began his long devoted and effective ministry in India, where he served God and his Church until his retirement in 1955, except for a short term in British Guiana, 1925-6.

In the Lucknow and Benares District his great concern was in the education of the young. His exceptional linguistic ability was placed entirely at the disposal of the Church and his mastery of Urdu led to his taking a leading part in the revision of the current Urdu Bible.

He also translated some theological works which are: widely used. He had a passionate desire to see the Union of the Churches in India, Pakistan, Burma and Ceylon, and in the uphill task of promoting this Union he showed great statesmanship, zeal and untiring patience.

In 1932 he became Chairman of the Lucknow and Benares District, and for the next twenty-three years he made an outstanding contribution to its life. He was meticulous and precise, a man who practised and preached discipline yet with a very tender heart ; he had a deep concern for the good of others, was most generous, and possessed great understanding of human nature and wonderful tolerance.

To him life was important and full of interests. He was always busy and active, a constant inspiration to others.

He became a supernumerary in 1955 and returned to his beloved Staffordshire and lived in Newcastle- under-Lyme. Only in name did he retire, for he continued to serve on the General Committee of the Missionary Society, to preach almost every Sunday in the Newcastle or adjoining Circuits, and to take a most active part in the life and work of the Church at Clayton, where he was a Trustee and Assistant Pastor of the new church which was built in 1960.

It was a great joy to him that in 1961 he was able to accept the invitation to preach the Lady Day Sermon in King’s College Chapel, Cambridge, and his theme on that occasion was “Church Union.”

He was preaching the Gospel of the Lord he loved so well and had served so faithfully two days before he died on 6 March 1962, aged seventy-six, in the fifty-third year of his ministry.

©Trustees for Methodist Church Purposes 1962

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