May 28, 1752, Panton House (near Wragby), Lincolnshire, England.

August 11, 1818, at his residence, Raithby Hall, near Spilsby, Lincolnshire, England.

Raithby Church, Lincolnshire, England.

Son of a wealthy Lincolnshire family, Brackenbury attended Felsted School, and matriculated at St. Catherine’s Hall, (now St. Catherine’s College) Cambridge, but left without graduating. He joined the Wesleys, and became a Methodist minister. In that capacity he visited Guernsey, Jersey and Holland.

In 1779, Brackenbury built a Methodist chapel above the stables in the grounds of his estate in Raithby. He also constructed Raithby Hall around this time. The chapel was completed before the house, which was just a shell when John Wesley visited Brackenbury in July 1779 to open the chapel. Wesley held Brackenbury in high regard and, despite his never being ordained, appointed him to be part of the Legal Hundred, a conference of esteemed ministers who advised Wesley and gave guidance on the appointment of preachers.

Wesley writes of his visits to Raithby and Brackenbury’s home fondly. After a visit in 1779, he wrote that he could not but observe, while the landlord and his tenants were standing together, how Love, like Death, maketh all distinctions void.

Brackenbury retired in 1789. His works include:

  1. Bestow, Dear Lord, upon Our Youth
  2. Come Children, ’Tis Jesus Commands
  3. Come, Holy Spirit, Raise Our Songs
  4. My Glorious Lord to Heaven Is Gone
  5. My Son, Know Thou the Lord
  6. Though Children in Stature and Years
  7. Tidings of Grace Now Reach Our Ears
  8. Ye Hearts, with Youthful Vigor Warm

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