Kenyon, Charles (1862-1895)

Transcription of obituary published in the Primitive Methodist Magazine by W.G.

THE REV. CHARLES KENYON began life at Ardsley, near Barnsley, September 10th, 1862. It was at the Sunday-school of his native village during his fourteenth year that he gave himself to God, and commenced that career of Christian service to which he devoted all his powers. On removing to Chesterfield four years later he became a local preacher. He soon heard and obeyed the call of God and His church to the full ministry of Christ’s Gospel. Before entering college he laboured for a few months as hired local preacher in the cathedral city of York, where he met with much encouragement.

By the Conference of 1885 he was stationed to Redditch Branch, where he spent three happy and successful years, A marble tablet which is being erected. in the Redditch Chapel testifies to the esteem in which he was there held. His next station was Leominster. Here, too, he had the joy of labouring with many tokens of success. During his third year at Leominster he was prostrated with a serious illness, the effects of which remained with him during the rest of his life.

After two and a-half years at Hayward’s Heath his health completely broke down, and acting upon medical advice he removed to Torquay, The Conference of 1894 granted him a year’s rest, and stationed him to the Teignmouth and Dawlish Mission, with an assistant. But his work was done. Consumption had fastened upon his system, and all efforts to arrest its progress proved unavailing. The Edinburgh Conference generously granted another year’s rest, but before the first year had expired, on July 5th, he passed away and entered upon his eternal rest.

The memory of his beautiful life and his earnest, eloquent ministry will long be cherished in many hearts. He was one whom to know was to love. His genial, happy, benevolent, sympathising nature won the hearts of all. “I am better for having known him,” is the testimony that comes from all quarters.

He practised and advocated systematic giving. All his business affairs were characterised by precision, system and accuracy. He put his conscience in everything that he did.

His long and trying affliction was borne with a wonderful patience. Hope of recovery buoyed him up to the very last. Until a few days before his death he was busy selecting texts and making outlines of sermons for use when he began to preach again.

He approached the end with a calm, peaceful assurance, testifying to the preciousness of Jesus. “Home! Home!” he whispered, as earth faded from view and the light of the land that is fairer than day dawned upon his enraptured vision, and with one last good-bye his sweet, patient, hopeful spirit passed to the Homeland.-

If to “live in hearts we leave behind is not to die,” then Brother Kenyon lives enshrined in the affections of many to whom his memory will long be fragrant and blessed.

Family

Charles was born on 10 September 1862 at Ardsley, nr Barnsley, Yorkshire.

Before entering the ministry, Charles worked as a grocer’s assistant in Chesterfield (1881), whilst living with an aunt and uncle.

He married Laura Bridgewater (1869-1960) in the summer of 1891 at Leominster, Herefordshire.

Charles died on 5 July 1895 at Teignmouth, Devon.

The 1901 census return identifies Laura as District Visitor for the Primitive Methodist Church in Leicester. In 1939 she is a retired probation officer.

Circuits

  • 1885 Bromsgrove
  • 1888 Leominster
  • 1891 Hayward’s Heath
  • 1894 Teignmouth

References

Primitive Methodist Magazine 1896/388

PM Minutes 1896/22

W Leary, Directory of Primitive Methodist Ministers and their Circuits, 1990

Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers

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