Henry Howard Edit Profile
Educated Wesley College, Melbourne. Doctor of Letters, Southwestern U., 1928. Doctor of Divinity, New York University, 1929.
Howard came from a poor background, and he at first received only a primary education. When a youth he tried to speak at a church meeting and completely broke down. Next day he told the Rev.
Dr Joseph Dare, the chairman of the meeting, that in view of his failure, he had resolved never to attempt public speaking again. Dr Dare replied, "I don't call that a failure, a real failure is when a man talks for an hour and says nothing". At 17 Howard became a local preacher in the Methodist Church, and in 1878 means were found to send him to Wesley College, Melbourne (under James Swanton Waugh), with which the "Provisional Theological Institution for Victoria and Tasmania" was linked.
This institution had been founded for the training of men for the Methodist ministry, and afterwards became part of Queen's College, one of the colleges affiliated with the University of Melbourne. In 1881, Howard was given his first charge at Warragul, and subsequently officiated at Hotham (North Melbourne), Merino, Toorak, Ballarat, and Kew. In 1902 he was appointed to the Pirie Street Methodist Church at Adelaide.
It was a large church capable of holding 1000 people, and for 19 years Howard filled it every Sunday, bringing to it many people from other churches who had been attracted by his preaching. Early in 1921, he went to England and for a time was in charge of the Hampstead Wesleyan Church. He was 67 years of age but his preaching had lost none of its vigour, and his sermons were frequently reported in the New York press.
His pastorate there was a great success. In 1931 he visited Australia, and celebrated the jubilee of his ministry by preaching at Warragul where he had begun it. Shortly after Howard return to America his health began to show signs of breaking down, an operation failed to give him relief, and he suffered much pain with great fortitude and unshaken faith.
With minimal promotion, he was able to attract and maintain capacity congregations for more than thirty years. As an orator he used of poetry, vivid metaphors and illustrations drawn from a wide range of contemporary literature.
Married Sarah Jane Reynolds, April. Children: Arthur E., Stanford, Egbert P., Winifred Jean.