Barnett, Dr Leonard Palin, BD
1919-2001; e.m.1942

Born in Crewe on 11 April 1919, he was educated at Crewe Grammar School, where he became head boy. At 17 he entered the Civil Service and came under the influence of Donald Soper at Kingsway Hall, became a local preacher (like his father) and in 1939 was accepted for the ministry. He trained at Hartley Victoria College; then, after three years in circuit was sent to Guernsey to build up youth work after the German occupation. In 1949 he became national secretary of the Methodist Association of Youth Clubs and its annual event at the Royal Albert Hall during its London Weekend owed much to his entrepreneurial skill and enthusiasm. His Adventure with Youth (1953) was the first youth work training handbook. It became an important national training handbook, with a second edition published in 1962. He returned to circuit work in 1958.

He served as chairman of the board of the Methodist Holiday Homes and was on the committee of Inter-Church Travel, and he himself led many parties to the Holy Land and elsewhere. During retirement he trained as a masseur in order to help elderly folk with back problems. As a preacher he was in demand as far afield as the USA and Madras Cathedral, as well as on radio and TV. His honorary doctorate was conferred by Pfeiffer University, USA. Among his many books were some, like A Prayer Diary for Youth (1953), addressed to the younger generation or to youth workers, and Here is Methodism (1966). He died on 26 June 2001.

  • Methodist Recorder, 26 July 2001