Powers, Ethel Clare

Deaconess and minister, born in London on 20 October 1911 into a Christian home. She began her training for the Wesley Deaconess Order in 1933, was ordained into the Order in 1938 and began her ministry in the inner-city missions inManchester and Salford and inLiverpool. In 1946 she was appointed a Moral Welfare Officer by the Women's Fellowship and in response to doubts as to whether such an office was needed for Methodists, reported that of the forty 'strictly moral welfare cases, mostly illegitimate children' in her first year all but six were 'Methodists from respectable homes'. The Mother and Baby Home in Streatham was set up under her pastoral care to meet the needs of young single mothers. Her concern for moral welfare and for the Church's ministry to and by women led to her appointment as general secretary of Women's Fellowship from 1969. She was a local preacher and in 1973 was one of the first group of women received into the ministry. She served at Stour Vale in the Black Country before superannuating at Stafford in 1977. She died on 21 May 1996.

  • Wesley Deaconess Order, The Agenda, Christmas 1947, pp.4-5
  • Methodist Recorder, 27 June 1996
  • E. Dorothy Graham, Saved to Serve: the Story of the Wesley Deaconess Order, 1890-1978 (Peterborough, 2002) p.44


Entry written by: EDG
Category: Person
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