Today in Christian History
Death in London of John of Gaunt, Duke of Lancaster, whose political struggles with powerful prelates led him to support the religious reformer John Wycliffe.
John Wesley arrives in London, having fled the colony of Georgia, where his ministry had been a serious failure.
Colonial missionary to the American Indians David Brainerd explained in a tract: 'God designs that those whom He sanctifies...shall tarry awhile in this present evil world, that their own experience of temptations may teach them how great the deliverance is, which God has wrought for them.'
The British House of Lords rules against the Corporation of London which, to raise money, had established heavy fines for anyone refusing to stand for office if nominated, and then nominated many dissenters, knowing that they could not take the oath required under the Test Act.
Death in Trowbridge, Wiltshire, England, of George Crabbe, a Church of England vicar and notable poet.
In Columbus, Ohio, a fellowship of independent Methodist, Presbyterian, Congregational and United Brethren churches organized itself into a separate Protestant denomination known as the Christian Union.
The Allied troopship S.S. Dorchester is torpedoed by a German sub near Greenland and goes down with a loss of 600 lives. The event is notable for the selflessness of four chaplains, Rev. Clark Poling (Dutch Reformed), Rev. George Lansing Fox (Methodist), Father John Washington (a Catholic priest) and Alexander David Goode (a Jewish rabbi), who gave up their lifejackets to save other men.
Desmond Tutu of South Africa becomes Johannesburg's first black Anglican bishop.
Execution in Texas of Karla Faye Tucker, a murderess, who converted to Christianity on death row and died praising Jesus. Movies and documentaries will be made about her life.
The Islamic city council of Demre, Turkey (formerly the Christian city, Myra), votes to replace the town's traditional bronze statue of St. Nicholas of Myra with an effigy of a fat man with a red fur suit.
© 1987-2020, William D. Blake. Portions used by permission of the author, from "Almanac of the Christian Church"