L. A. Dyason

Photo courtesy of Adventist Heritage Center, Avondale, Australia.

Dyason, Lennon Anton (1907–1980)

By Milton Hook

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Milton Hook, Ed.D. (Andrews University, Berrien Springs, Michigan, the United States). Hook retired in 1997 as a minister in the Greater Sydney Conference, Australia. An Australian by birth Hook has served the Church as a teacher at the elementary, academy and college levels, a missionary in Papua New Guinea, and as a local church pastor. In retirement he is a conjoint senior lecturer at Avondale College of Higher Education. He has authored Flames Over Battle Creek, Avondale: Experiment on the Dora, Desmond Ford: Reformist Theologian, Gospel Revivalist, the Seventh-day Adventist Heritage Series, and many magazine articles. He is married to Noeleen and has two sons and three grandchildren.

First Published: December 23, 2021

Lennon Anton Dyason was a missionary in Tonga and Papua New Guinea.

Early Life

Lennon Anton Dyason was born in Clifton Hill, suburban Melbourne, Victoria, on May 7, 1907. His siblings were: Alfred Campbell (b.1904), Milton Weiss (b.1905) and Arthur Prescott (b.1908).1 While they were children their parents, Alfred and Mathilde (Williams) Dyason became Seventh-day Adventists under the ministry of Harold Mitchell. Their father began employment with the Sanitarium Health Food Company and his management role eventually led to a transfer to Christchurch, New Zealand.2 The education of the children was, in part, received at the New Zealand Missionary College.3 In 1925 Lennon advanced to the Australasian Missionary College in Cooranbong, New South Wales, and graduated from the Biblical-Academic Course in 1927.4

Ministry

Apparently, Lennon felt no urgency to enter church employment immediately. He first appeared in April 1931 as a colporter in Western Australia, selling Bible Pictures and Stories.5 Good sales results encouraged him to continue until September 1933.6 At the time he also courted the Conference secretary, Janet Rita Clark of the Bickley church. Lennon received an appointment to begin evangelistic work in the North New South Wales Conference for 1934 so he dutifully made the transfer. Later that year Janet crossed the continent to join him and on October 31 they were married in the Wahroonga church.7 They remained in the North New South Wales Conference until the close of 1936, Lennon effectively completing his practical training before being given wider responsibilities.8

In 1937 and 1938 Lennon held the portfolios of Home Missions, Sabbath School and the Youth Departments in the South New Zealand Conference.9 He was then appointed to the Victorian Conference to assist with evangelistic crusades.10 It proved to be a brief term because at the Australasian Union Conference Council in September 1939 he was asked to go to Tonga.11 Once again, this term in the Pacific mission field was less than eighteen months. Early in 1942, with the World War situation deteriorating, he was recalled to the homeland and appointed to be Young People’s Secretary in the Tasmanian Conference. The day prior to travelling to Tasmania Lennon was ordained in the Prahran church, suburban Melbourne, on the evening of May 13, 1942.12

Lennon spent the remainder of the War years in Tasmania13 and then transferred to the South Australian Conference where he served in Sabbath School and Youth Department administration.14 Five years as Youth leader in the Queensland Conference were served from 1949 through 195315 followed by a further eight years with the same portfolio in the North New South Wales Conference. During this latter period he was Temperance Secretary for one year which served as a training session for the role that marked his closing years of ministry.16

Two years were spent in pastoral ministry in the Greater Sydney Conference17 before Lennon was appointed to be the Temperance Liaison Officer for the Coral Sea Union Mission with headquarters in Lae, Papua New Guinea.18 The position was a new initiative for the express purpose of assisting the government to establish programs to fight the escalating use of alcohol and other drugs. He returned to the Greater Sydney Conference in December 1965 to serve as Temperance Secretary until his retirement in September 1972. In that period he worked tirelessly as a lecturer on temperance topics for the benefit of Rotary Clubs, high schools, and police anti-drugs squads, earning the respect of government officials.19

Retirement Years

At retirement Lennon held the rare distinction of having served in every Australian State in addition to New Zealand, Tonga, and Papua New Guinea. After more than forty years in church employment both he and Janet were in good health so Lennon volunteered to continue work. He adopted a fresh challenge, the Stewardship portfolio in the Greater Sydney Conference which he held until 1975.20

Lennon passed away in the Sydney Adventist Hospital on March 10, 1980, and was interred in the Avondale Memorial Cemetery, Cooranbong, New South Wales.21 Janet continued to live in Wahroonga until 1984 and then she made a sentimental return to relatives in her homeland of Western Australia. In 1989 she moved to Canberra to be close to children and grandchildren and was cared for in Kalparrin Private Hostel. She passed away in Canberra Hospital on August 30, 1990, and was laid to rest with Lennon in the Avondale Memorial Cemetery. Their three children, Colleen, Dennis, and Gary, survived them.22

Sources

Anderson, A[lbert] W. “Sr. A.J. Dyason.” Australasian Record, June 12, 1939.

Australasian Missionary College Annual Announcement. Cooranbong, New South Wales: Avondale Press, 1946.

“Colporter’s Monthly Summary.” Australasian Record, June 16, 1931.

“Colporter’s Monthly Summary.” Australasian Record, November 6, 1933.

“Lennon Anton Dyason.” FamilySearch.org. Intellectual Reserve, 2020. Retrieved from https://www.familysearch.org/tree/pedigree/landscape/LN4X-8TK.

McCutcheon, O.D. F[reeman]. “Janet Rita Dyason.” Record, December 1, 1990.

McCutcheon, O.D. F[reeman]. “Lennon Anton Dyason.” Australasian Record and Advent World Survey, April 28, 1980.

McCutcheon, O.D. F[reeman]. “Life Sketch of Pastor L.A. Dyason.” Australasian Record and Advent World Survey, April 28, 1980.

“Pastor R.A. Thrift advises us…” Australasian Record, June 6, 1942.

“The Union Conference.” Australasian Record, October 2, 1939.

Seventh-day Adventist Yearbook. Washington, D.C.: Review and Herald Publishing Association, 1934-1972.

Stewart, A[ndrew] G. “Dyason-Clark.” Australasian Record, November 12, 1934.

Notes

  1. “Lennon Anton Dyason,” FamilySearch.org. Intellectual Reserve, 2020, accessed September 25, 2020, https://www.familysearch.org/tree/pedigree/landscape/LN4X-8TK.

  2. A[lbert] W. Anderson, “Sr. A.J. Dyason,” Australasian Record, June 12, 1939, 7.

  3. O.D. F[reeman] McCutcheon, “Life Sketch of Pastor L.A. Dyason,” Australasian Record and Advent World Survey, April 28, 1980, 12.

  4. Australasian Missionary College Annual Announcement (Cooranbong, New South Wales: Avondale Press, 1946), 45.

  5. “Colporter’s Monthly Summary,” Australasian Record, June 16, 1931, 4-5.

  6. “Colporter’s Monthly Summary,” Australasian Record, November 6, 1933, 4-5.

  7. A[ndrew] G. Stewart, “Dyason-Clark,” Australasian Record, November 12, 1934, 7.

  8. “North New South Wales Conference,” Seventh-day Adventist Yearbook (Washington, D.C.: Review and Herald Publishing Association, 1936), 71.

  9. South New Zealand Conference,” Seventh-day Adventist Yearbook (Washington, D.C.: Review and Herald Publishing Association, 1937), 71.

  10. “Victorian Conference,” Seventh-day Adventist Yearbook (Washington, D.C.: Review and Herald Publishing Association, 1939), 75.

  11. “The Union Conference,” Australasian Record, October 2, 1939, 5-6.

  12. “Pastor R.A. Thrift advises us…” Australasian Record, June 8, 1942, 8.

  13. E.g., “Tasmanian Conference,” Seventh-day Adventist Yearbook (Washington, D.C.: Review and Herald Publishing Association, 1944), 68-69.

  14. “South Australian Conference,” Seventh-day Adventist Yearbook (Washington, D.C.: Review and Herald Publishing Association, 1948), 72-73.

  15. E.g., “Queensland Conference,” Seventh-day Adventist Yearbook (Washington, D.C.: Review and Herald Publishing Association, 1951), 91.

  16. “North New South Wales Conference,” Seventh-day Adventist Yearbook (Washington, D.C.: Review and Herald Publishing Association, 1961), 86-87.

  17. E.g., “Greater Sydney Conference,” Seventh-day Adventist Yearbook (Washington, D.C.: Review and Herald Publishing Association, 1963), 90.

  18. “Coral Sea Union Mission,” Seventh-day Adventist Yearbook (Washington, D.C.: Review and Herald Publishing Association, 1964), 89.

  19. O.D. F[reeman] McCutcheon, “Life Sketch of Pastor L.A. Dyason,” Australasian Record and Advent World Survey, April 28, 1980, 12.

  20. Ibid.

  21. O.D. F[reeman] McCutcheon, “Lennon Anton Dyason,” Australasian Record and Advent World Survey, April 28, 1980, 14.

  22. O.D. F[reeman] McCutcheon, “Janet Rita Dyason,” Record, December 1, 1990, 17-18.

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Hook, Milton. "Dyason, Lennon Anton (1907–1980)." Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. December 23, 2021. Accessed December 01, 2022. https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=BIJK.

Hook, Milton. "Dyason, Lennon Anton (1907–1980)." Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. December 23, 2021. Date of access December 01, 2022, https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=BIJK.

Hook, Milton (2021, December 23). Dyason, Lennon Anton (1907–1980). Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. Retrieved December 01, 2022, https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=BIJK.