Miles, Leonard (1853-1939)
Leonard was born in 1853 at Mid Lavant, nr Chichester, Sussex to parents William and Emma. William was a cordwainer. Leonard was baptised on 13 March 1853 at Mid Lavant. His village was a place where ‘Methodism was considered as Dissent and Dissent as sin’.
Leonard left school at twelve and, until the age of seventeen, seemed to have had little real spiritual experience. About that time, passing a PM chapel in the hamlet of Walderton, Leonard heard hearty singing which attracted him inside. Here, through the simple means of hymn and tender but straight appeal, he was convinced of sin. He struggled for seven weeks before light broke in and he knew he was a child of God. This led to trouble in his business life, but in the end to his betterment later on.
He was soon chosen to take a service and in due course was put on the plan and recommended for ministry.
His obituary records that Leonard possessed a fine spirit of generosity, and there was about him the beauty of a manly, saintly life. He was a man of great zeal. He gave himself unstintingly to the work of his circuits, ever seeking to build up his churches. Diligent and devoted as a circuit minister, it was as though he had a special call to ‘do the work of an evangelist.’
Leonard married Elizabeth Jones (1849-1927) in the summer of 1883 at Clun, Shropshire.
Leonard died on 6 March 1939 at Clun, Shropshire.
- 1877 Lichfield
- 1879 Bishop’s Castle
- 1881 Leominster & c
- 1883 Preston Brook
- 1885 Church Stretton
- 1886 Hay
- 1889 Presteign
- 1892 Prees Green
- 1895 Lichfield
- 1898 Leintwardine
- 1902 Minsterley
- 1908 Kingstone
- 1909 Radcliffe
- 1912 Craven Arms
- 1918 Clun (Sup)
Primitive Methodist Magazine 1913/298; 1928/678 (wife)
Methodist Minutes 1939/213
W Leary, Directory of Primitive Methodist Ministers and their Circuits, 1990
Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers