Megiddo Church

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to be distinguished from the Megiddo church, archeological site in Israel

The Megiddo Mission or Megiddo Church is a small American Restorationist denomination founded by L. T. Nichols in 1880 in Rochester, New York. The church's magazine is the Megiddo Message.[1][2][3]

Lemuel T. Nichols was born on October 1, 1844, Goshen, Indiana near Elkhart, Indiana and was named after his father, Lemuel Truesdale Nichols Sr. - though it appears that the younger Nichols never used his given names. He founded his church in 1880.[4][5][6] Nichols conceived an idea of spreading his message by cruising the Mississippi, the Ohio, and their tributaries in a three-deck steamboat, named the Megiddo. When Nichols died on 28 February 1912 at Battle Creek, Michigan, he was quickly succeeded by his assistant Maud Hembree, a female former Catholic convert from Oregon, who took over as pastor.[7][8][9] Hembree died in 1935 and was succeeded as pastor of the Rochester church and editor of the magazine by Ella Skeels, Nichols's sister.[10]


The Megiddo Church denies the doctrine of the Trinity; Jesus is considered God's son and the Holy Spirit is seen as a divine power not a person. They also deny the immortality of the soul, and believe in resurrection of the dead and judgment at the return of Christ.[11] The church does not practice water baptism and practices communion once a year at Passover. Nichols expected the return of Elijah and rejected the idea of a new Elijah. Nichols is held in the highest esteem by the members of the Megiddo Church, and his birthday, October 1, is celebrated as a holiday second only in importance to Christmas.[12]


  1. ^ Religion and the culture of print in modern America -p131 Charles Lloyd Cohen, Paul S. Boyer - 2008"The Megiddo Church's founder, Wisconsin Civil War veteran LT Nichols (1844–1912) , began his ministry in Dodge County, Wisconsin. In 1873 he moved to Yamhill County, Oregon, where he established a small congregation affiliated with the ..." .. Gari-Anne Patzwald introduces the MegiddoChurch, a semi-communitarian, millennialist sect whose home congregation never numbered more than a few hundred adherents but whose publications, most notably the Megiddo Message, knit together ..."
  2. ^ Rochester's 19th Ward p100 Michael Leavy, Glenn Leavy - 2005 "LT Nichols (1844-1912) was a successful manufacturer near Minneapolis when strong spiritual yearnings made him lake steps toward the establishment of a mission. He decided that through a boat, he could reach as many people as possible ..."
  3. ^ The Christadelphians in North America Charles H. Lippy - 1989 "The Megiddo Mission Church stems from the teachings of LT Nichols (1844-1912), who was originally from India." Drafted into the Union army during the War Between the States, Nichols personally appealed to President Abraham Lincoln for "
  4. ^ Waiting for Elijah: a history of the Megiddo Mission p1872 Gari-Anne Patzwald - 2002 "LT's father, Lemuel Truesdale Nichols, was born in the so-called burned-over district of upstate New York. Over a period of several decades, he followed the frontier and eventually settled in the Pacific Northwest."
  5. ^ Heritage quest 67-69 1997 "As mentioned earlier, the original group who went west was comprised of the following people: Lemuel Truesdale Nichols, Sr, & wife Emmeline Dunbar Rev. LT Nichols b 1844 Elkhart, IN Harriet E. Griffis b 1844 Eagle, NY (wife of LT) Ella ..."
  6. ^ American notes & queries 6 William White - 1946 "(The initials were those of his father, Lemuel Truesdale Nichols, but there is every indication that the younger Nichols never used the names themselves.) He was born on October I, 1844, near Elkhart, Indiana, and grew up in frontier ..."
  7. ^ J. Gordon Melton Encyclopedia of American religions - 2003 "Megiddo Church 481 Thurston Rd. Rochester, NY 14619 LT Nichols was an independent Bible student who became a ... succeeded by Maud Hembree, a former Roman Catholic. She developed an active mission ..."
  8. ^ Charles Lloyd Cohen, Paul S. Boyer Religion and the culture of print in modern America 2008 p133 "In this environment, one would expect an avid publisher of tracts such as LT Nichols to have been at the ... When Nichols died in February 1912, he was quickly succeeded by his able assistant, Maud Hembree, who continued to send ..."
  9. ^ Annals of Iowa Iowa. Division of Historical Museum and Archives, State Historical Society of Iowa - 2005 "Founder LT Nichols, in the tradition of Alexander Campbell, Barton Stone, and William Miller, intended to "restore" the Christian church ... When Nichols died in 1912, Maud Hembree, a female convert from Oregon, took over as pastor."
  10. ^ Cohen & Boyer "16 By the 1930s, particularly after Maud Hembree's death in 1935, the activities of the Maranatha sisters and Progressive brothers became increasingly prominent in the Message. Ella Skeels, LT Nichols's sister, who succeeded Hembree as pastor, was not the prolific writer that her predecessor had been, and as a consequence, the sermons published in the magazine were those of Nichols and Hembree."
  11. ^ Encyclopedia of American religions J. Gordon Melton - 2003 "Members of the Megiddo Church deny the Trinity. Jesus is considered God's son and the Holy Spirit is seen as a Divine power not a person. Man is mortal; immortality comes only as God's reward for a life of righteous living."
  12. ^ Patzwald Waiting for Elijah: a history of the Megiddo Mission 2002 "Given that Nichols expected the actual prophet Elijah to return and that he rejected the idea of a new Elijah, ... Since Nichols is held in the highest esteem by the members of the Megiddo Church, as a holiday his birthday is second in ..... According to an article in the Message, "Christmas Day and October 1 are memorable days at Megiddo. It may be a mere coincidence that the birthday of our honored leader comes in the fall, while that of our coming King occurs in the "