Eileen Roberts passes on

Eileen Roberts
Eileen Roberts

One of Britain’s best-loved and most influential mediums, Eileen Roberts, died peacefully at her home in Essex, just a few days before her 93rd birthday on Sunday, 10 May.

A gifted medium, she dedicated much of her life to teaching mediumship as well as working to improve standards.

Eileen was president and education officer of the Institute of Spiritualist Mediums (ISM) for over 40 years and her huge contribution to its work was recognised, on her retirement at the age of 90, when the title “president emeritus” was bestowed on her.

Her influence went far beyond Britain’s shores and she travelled extensively at one time, establishing close links with various churches, but particularly with the First Spiritual Temple in Boston, United States, where she became an annual visitor and demonstrator.

Its website makes this observation: “Eileen represents a dying era in Spiritualism and mediumship: an era where hard work, study and patience became cobblestones which marked the road to mediumship; an era where the straight and narrow was preferable to the easy way; where fame, publicity and money did not outshine the genuine work of spirit.”

Eileen Roberts’ knowledge and understanding of mediumship reached a wide audience through her books, Investigating Mediumship, Misconceptions in Mediumship and Subtle Studies of the Mediumistic Faculty.

She had suffered poor health in recent years and had lost her sight. USM president Graham Jones will conduct the service at Upminster Crematorium (Corbets Tey), Essex, on Friday 22 May at 3.45pm.

The ISM began life as the Union of Spiritualist Mediums at the instigation of Bertha Harris and a handful of other London mediums. Its purpose was “the training of prospective workers – young or old – in the principles of the religious philosophy of Spiritualism”.

That objective covered speakers and healers but the organisation was recognised most for encouraging the development of new mediums with “Fledgling Meetings” at which they showed what they could do and, if they met with approval, were awarded a probationer’s certificate.

That was the foundation for a successful career for many who went on to become well-known public mediums. Today, its members who are working mediums of experience, may apply for Registration as an Approved Medium (ISM/RAM), creditation which reflects a high standard of ability and a detailed knowledge of Spiritualism and mediumship.

The union changed its name to the Institute of Spiritualist Mediums in 1981 – its Silver Jubilee year – when it also launched the ISM Home Circle Link. It was Eileen Roberts who produced the tutorial package for this new initiative.

Eileen Roberts at her home in Essex

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