Historical Writings

Today in Christian History

Thursday, June 17

1703
Birth of John Wesley, English founder of Methodism. The systematic disciplines of the 'Holy Club,' which John and his brother Charles founded, elicited the nickname 'Methodies' from their critics.
1791
Death of Selina Hastings, Countess of Huntingdon, a lifelong supporter of revival leaders and Methodists. Hours before her death of a ruptured blood vessel, she had whispered, "I shall go to my father tonight."
1822
In New York City, the first elders of the newly founded African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Zion Church were ordained.
1846
Iowa College was chartered in Davenport under the joint sponsorship of the Congregational and Presbyterian churches. The school changed location in 1859 and was later renamed Grinnell College.
1855
James Theodore Augustus Holly, an African-American, is ordained as a deacon at St. Matthew's Church, Detroit. Nineteen years later, he will become the first African-American missionary-bishop of the Episcopal Church (for Haiti).
1859
Birth of J. Wilbur Chapman, Presbyterian pastor and evangelist who authored a number of hymns, including 'One Day When Heaven Was Filled with His Praises.'
1956
Founding of the Thomas Road Baptist Church by Jerry Falwell and his associates.
1963
English apologist C.S. Lewis wrote in a letter: 'Has this world been so kind to you that you should leave it with regret? There are better things ahead than any we leave behind.'
1981
Muslims in al-Zawya Alhamra, a Coptic district of Cairo, attempt to seize a Coptic businessman's land to build a mosque. Armed with machine guns, knives, crowbars, and other weapons they attack Christians and their property over a two day period, destroying one hundred and fifty homes and shops and murdering more than a hundred Christians, several by burning them alive. Afterward, foreign correspondents will be barred from photographing the carnage or interviewing the relatives of the victims or eyewitnesses.
2004
Jiang Zongxiu, a 34 year old mother and wife in China is arrested and beaten for distributing Christian literature in a marketplace. She will die the next day.

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