Historical Writings

Today in Christian History

Thursday, November 8

324
[probable date] Emperor Constantine proclaims his mother Helena “Augusta” (the most prestigious honorary title available). Thereafter her image will often appear on imperial coins.
1842
Orange Scott and two other ministers withdraw from the Methodist Episcopal Church, repudiating its compromises on slavery and other issues, and begin publication of The True Wesleyan. Their action will lead the following year to formation of the Wesleyan Methodist Connection.
1845
English archaeologist Austen Henry Layard begins digging at Tigris where he will find the palace of Assurnsirpal II. He will later excavate Nineveh, shedding light and confirmation on disputed biblical accounts.
1874
James Theodore Holly is ordained the first bishop of Haiti at Grace Church, New York City. This makes him the first African American raised to the office of missionary bishop in the Episcopal Church.
1889
Birth of Oswald J. Smith, Canadian clergyman. Founder of the People's Church of Toronto, Smith also authored a number of books and composed more than 1,200 hymns, including "The Song of the Soul Set Free."
1904
Emile Combs introduced a bill for the separation of Church and State in France. The bill passed in December 1905, thereby ending the Concordat of 1801 and allowing complete liberty of conscience.
1929
Soviets arrest Michael Alexeyevich Golikov, rector of the Resurrection cathedral in Tutayev, Yaroslavl province. They will sentence him to three years imprisonment for "anti-Soviet agitation." Later, he will receive an even longer sentence for attempting to communicate to the West the terrible conditions of the prison camps and will die in a camp before completing that sentence.
1951
American Presbyterian missionary Francis Schaeffer wrote in a letter: 'The higher the mountains, the more understandable is the glory of Him who made them and who holds them in His hand.'
1952
English apologist C.S. Lewis wrote in a letter: 'When I have learnt to love God better than my earthly dearest, I shall love my earthly dearest better than I do now.... When first things are put first, second things are not suppressed but increased.'
2011
The Grand Mufti of Kashmir, India, has the police arrest Anglican pastor Chandra Manni Khana on various vague religious charges. He had recently baptized seven Muslim converts.

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