Bray, Thomas, philanthropist and pioneer Anglican mission strategist, baptised Chirbury, Shropshire, 3 May 1658, died London, 1730.
Ordained priest in 1681, Bray became rector of Sheldon, Warwick in 1690. In 1696 he published his Lectures upon the Church Catechism. He was instrumental in founding the Society for the Propagation of Christian Knowledge in March 1699 to provide Christian libraries in the American colonies. It also supported parochial libraries in Britain and from 1710 contributed to the Danish-Halle Mission in Tranquebar.
After visiting Maryland in 1700, Bray obtained a royal charter for the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in June 1701. He was appointed to St. Botolph Without, Aldgate, London, in 1706 and in 1723 created the Associates of Dr. Bray for the evangelization of African American slaves.