Historical Writings

Today in Christian History

Thursday, May 26

451
Armenians fight a desperate battle at Avarayr to preserve their Christian culture against the Persians, who have a much larger army. This is the first known battle in history fought to preserve a nation's Christian faith. Although the Armenians lose the battle and their best leaders, the Persians lose sixty thousand soldiers and agree by treaty that Armenia may practice its faith.
605
(probable date) Death of Augustine of Canterbury, the missionary who had persuaded the Anglo-Saxons of Wessex and Kent to follow Christianity.
1595
Death in Rome of Philip Neri, the founder of the Oratorians.
1811
Birth of William Hunter, American Methodist clergyman. The author of three collections of hymns, published during his lifetime, Hunter is best remembered today for the hymn entitled, "The Great Physician Now is Near."
1862
Thomas Barnardo experiences conversion to evangelical Christianity. His most famous work will be the opening of orphanages for London's homeless boys and girls.
1894
Lillian May Thomas, an African-American, sails from the United States for the Congo as a missionary.
1899
Future President William McKinley, 56, wrote in his notebook: 'My belief embraces the Divinity of Christ and a recognition of Christianity as the mightiest factor in the world's civilization.' (McKinley had been "born again," at age 10, during a revival meeting, and later joined a Methodist church.)
1910
Pope Pius X issues his “Borromeo” encyclical (Editae saepe) in which he blames modern revolutions on “the would-be reformers of the sixteenth century” and characterizes them as enemies of the cross.
1952
Death in Fort Worth, Texas, of Walter Thomas Conner, a Southern Baptist preacher and educator active in Texas. He had sought to make theological education result in practical expressions of faith, by writing and teaching for four decades at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary.
1957
The religious program "The Fourth R" aired for the last time over NBC television. Produced by several different religious organizations, this short-lived series aired on Sunday mornings.

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