Historical Writings

Today in Christian History

Friday, October 24

1260
Under Pope Alexander IV, Chartres Cathedral in France was consecrated. Completed in less than 30 years, the structure represents high Gothic architecture at its purest.
1648
The Peace of Westphalia ends central Europe's Thirty Years War, extending equal rights to Catholics and Protestants.
1655
Death in Paris of Pierre Gassendi, a Roman Catholic priest who had also been a mathematician, scientific experimenter, and philosopher of considerable renown, and who had revived the atomic theory of Epicurus.
1790
English founder of Methodism John Wesley, 87, made the last entry in his 55-year-long journal, written after preaching a sermon: 'I hope many even then resolved to choose the better part.' (Wesley died the following March.)
1826
Death of Ann Hasseltine Judson, wife of missionary Adoniram Judson. In 1812, the pair had married just twelve days before they set sail to India as missionaries. Forced from India, they went to Burma, where Adoniram was eventually imprisoned during a Burmese war with Britain. Ann had carried food to him. Exhausted by heroic efforts to save his life, she died at the age of thirty-seven.
1870
Death of St. Anthony Claret, Roman Catholic missionary in Catalan.
1911
Missionary widow Aimee Elizabeth Kennedy Semple, 21, married Harold Stewart McPherson, also 21. Afterward, Aimee Semple McPherson went on to establish the International Church of the Foursquare Gospel in 1918. (She and Harold would divorce in 1921).
1956
In Syracuse, New York, Margaret Ellen Towner became the first woman ordained in the Presbyterian Church.
1992
Death of Archbishop Michael of Toledo, who had helped bring into existence the Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese of North America.
2005
Death in Detroit, Michigan, of Rosa Parks, whose Christian faith had given her the courage to resist segregation in Alabama. She was a member of the African Methodist Episcopal Church.

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