STEVENS, William Henry 1891 - 1962

Obituary from the Minutes of the Methodist Conference 1962, page 216

Born in Church Gresley, Derbyshire, in 1891. Reared in a devoted Methodist family, his grandfather and uncle being ministers, he early gave his life to God. He was educated at Ashby-de-la-Zouch Grammar School and at Bedford School. Conscious of a clear call, he offered himself for the Wesleyan ministry in 1913.

He was accepted, and after training at Didsbury College he began a ministry that was to cover many parts of the country. His circuits included Bridgwater, Stow Mission, Saddleworth, Willenhall, Matlock, Mid-Gloucester Mission, Coventry, Sowerby Bridge, Padiham, Lancaster, Haslingden, Blackburn, Widnes, and Ambleside and Windermere, and in all of them he served God and people with faithfulness and ability.

He was a man of deep spiritual experience, with a sure hold upon the living realities of faith which enabled him to face life’s mysteries with a serene spirit and to communicate to others a vivid sense of the adequacy of Christ. Behind a shyness of manner there was a warm and generous spirit and a genuine love for people.

He was keenly interested in youth work, and in our Church many are doing a fine work who owe much to his influence in their early years. He was a firm believer in spiritual healing, and it rejoiced him to know that through his ministry the healing power of God had been manifested in remarkable ways among some of his people.

For many years he found deep satisfactions in psychical research, attaining such wide knowledge of the subject that he was invited to lecture in many parts of the country.

Retiring in 1956, he lived first at Northampton, then later at Blackpool where he was held in respect and affection by all our people, and where he continued to find abundant joy in preaching.

He died suddenly on 17 May 1962, in the seventy-second year of his age and the forty-sixth year of his ministry.

©Trustees for Methodist Church Purposes 1962

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