Today in Christian History
Beginning date in the Coptic Church's Calendar of the Martyrs, a date chosen in commemoration of those who died for their faith during the rule of Diocletian the Roman Emperor.
Members of the Evangelical Estates determine to prepare an apology for the Augsburg Confession to present to Emperor Charles V.
In Lyon, France, following the onset of the St. Bartholomew Day's Massacre, officials place Protestants under protective custody in the city's convents and jails. It does not save their lives. Two days later, crowds will break in and massacre the prisoners by sword, strangulation, and drowning. Witnesses report that the Rhone River flows red from the blood of thousand of mutilated corpses.
Oliver Cromwell's government issues an ordinance appointing lay commissioners in all the counties of England and Wales with power to eject "scandalous, ignorant and insufficient [incompetent] ministers and schoolmasters." Each County Committee consists of fifteen to thirty laymen, with eight to ten divines as assessors.
Rev. Devereux Jarratt, a minister of the English Church, settles in a parish in Virginia where he will be instrumental in stirring up revival among a largely apathetic and profane people, working in tandem with Methodist evangelists.
Birth of Charles G. Finney, American revivalist and educator. Originally trained in law, he was converted to Christian faith at age 29, conducted revival services for eight years and, from 1835 until his death, maintained a close affiliation with Oberlin College in Ohio.
The Social Brethren were officially organized in Illinois. Today, there are about 1,000 total members of this small, evangelistic denomination, with most churches located in Illinois, Michigan and Indiana. Church doctrine is a blend of Methodist and Baptist polity.
All of the bishops of the Colored Methodist Episcopal Church (later known as the Christian Methodist Episcopal Church) meet in the First Methodist Church of Atlanta, Georgia, to discuss the educational needs of their denomination. They form a board of trustees, promise aid to one college already opened, and establish the Payne Institute.
Death of Lewis H. Redner, 78, American Episcopal organist. Maintaining a keen interest in music all his life, Redner composed ST. LOUIS, the tune to which today is most commonly sung Phillips Brooks' Christmas hymn, "O Little Town of Bethlehem."
Death of Ernest W. Shurtleff, 55, American Congregational clergyman and author of the hymn, "Lead On, O King Eternal." Shurtleff died during World War I, while doing relief work along with his wife.
© 1987-2020, William D. Blake. Portions used by permission of the author, from "Almanac of the Christian Church"