Historical Writings

Today in Christian History

Thursday, April 23

33
Christian tradition says the Jesus Christ, crucified three days earlier, was raised from the dead -- marking this date as the very first Easter. (The next time Easter falls on April 23rd will be in the year 2079.)
685
Dedication of a new church at the monastery of Jarrow in England. This monastery will be of interest because of its association with Biscop Baducing and the Venerable Bede. The building will still be functional, displaying its original dedication inscription, fifteen centuries later.
997
Martyrdom of Adalbert of Prague, Missionary to Prussia, at the hands of a heathen priest. As bishop of Prague, he had sought to extinguish heathen customs and institute moral reforms and, when repulsed, devoted himself to mission work in Germany and Poland. It was he who baptized Stephen of Hungary.
1625
Death of Maurice de Nassau, Prince of Orange, who had successfully driven the Spanish from the Netherlands, improving the training and care of armies in the process. He had favored strict Calvinists over Arminians and a centralized state over states' rights, executing his chief rival Johan van Oldenbarnevelt.
1702
Death of English Quaker leader Margaret Fell Fox. Her last words were "I am in Peace." She had been a founding member of the Religious Society of Friends and one of the society's "Valiant Sixty" preachers and missionaries.
1779
Anglican clergyman and hymnwriter John Newton wrote in a letter: '"What Thou wilt, when Thou wilt, how Thou wilt." I had rather speak these three sentences from my heart in my mother tongue than be master of all the languages in Europe.'
1789
What is believed to have been the first Catholic newspaper in America, "The Courier de Boston" published its first issue. (The periodical lasted only until October 15th of this same year.)
1960
Death of Japanese Christian Socialist Toyohiko Kagawa.
1968
In Dallas, the ten-million-member Methodist and the seven hundred and fifty thousand-member Evangelical United Brethren churches join together to form the United Methodist Church, which thus becomes at that time the second largest Protestant denomination in the United States (after the Southern Baptists).
1982
Death in North Carolina of Cameron Townsend while battling acute leukemia. He had been a missionary linguist and founder of Wycliffe Bible Translators, one of the world's largest mission agencies.

Copyright Statement
© 1987-2020, William D. Blake. Portions used by permission of the author, from "Almanac of the Christian Church"