CHRISTADELPHIAN RESEARCH

An exhaustive and authoritative investigation into the Christadelphians with links from their own sources as well as insights from former members. Complete examination of their history, organisation, theology, practices, and the challenges they face.

The Graves of Doctor John Thomas and Robert Roberts

The Graves of John Thomas and Robert Roberts

Doctor John Thomas, the founder of the Christadelphians was buried in the Green-Wood Cemetery, Long Island in Brooklyn, New York after his death on March 5, 1871.  Initially he was put in a burial vault after a ceremony conducted by a Brother Ennis on March 6, 1871, but was transported here to respect his wishes when alive to “Put me quietly out of site in some corner” and a second ceremony was conducted by Robert Roberts on April 30, 1871.

His grave can be seen with an obelisk towering over it, a symbol with pagan origins and esoteric significance in ancient times as a phallic symbol, which was a strange monument to erect by those burying him considering his forthrightness about how paganism was in the beliefs and rites of mainstream Christianity.  On the right lies the grave of his wife, Ellen Thomas, and on his left is the grave of Robert Roberts who was instrumental in continuing his work and structuring the Christadelphians into a denomination.

The words on his tomb can be seen to read:

HERE LIES IN BRIEF REPOSE
waiting
the return of the Lord
From Heaven
JOHN THOMAS.M.D.
Author of Elpis Israel Eureka,
Anatolia Anastasis Phanerosis
and other works
_____
Born April 12. 1805
Died March 5. 1871

The words on the tomb of Robert Roberts can be seen to read:

HERE LIES
ROBERT ROBERTS
of Birmingham England
Editor of the
Christadelphian. Author
of Christendom Astray
and many other works
who for Forty Years in the
Front ranks of the
Christadelphians
Aided and continued the Work
begun by Dr THOMAS, by whose
side he now sleeps in Jesus
Born 8 April 1899

Obituary of Doctor John Thomas

Following the burial of John Thomas the obituary seen was published in The Christadelphian magazine, June 1871.  This seems to have some extended wording than can be read from the picture of his tomb, although it may simply not follow the printed order and be out of view of the photograph.  The obituary also had an unintended error in that it stated “THE LONG-LOST FAITH OF THE JEWS” when it was intended to read “THE LONG-LOST FAITH OF THE APOSTLES”.

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