Today in Christian History
Death of eighty-two-year-old Roman Emperor Justinian. He had reunited the Eastern and Western empires politically and religiously, erected several basilicas and created the Justinian Code. This code of law will influence the development of canon law in the Middle Ages and secular law codes into modern times.
Death of Gregory Palamas, a fourteenth-century Byzantium monk. He had advocated repetitive prayer and devotion to Mary. Having fled from Mt. Athos to escape the Turks, he became bishop of Thessalonica, was excommunicated during power struggles, and eventually rehabilitated.
Dutch Anabaptist reformer Menno Simons wrote in a letter: 'We ought not to dread death so. It is but to cease from sin and to enter into a better life.'
English revivalist George Whitefield wrote in his journal: 'We can preach the Gospel of Christ no further than we have experienced the power of it in our own hearts.'
In Wales, English revivalist George Whitefield, 27, married widow Elizabeth Burnell, 36. (Whitefield apparently did not allow marriage to interrupt his evangelistic activities, since he was not home when their first child was born.)
At a convention of the Northern association of the Young Men's Christian Association (YMCA) in New York City, the United States Christian Commission is formed. It will minister to the material and spiritual needs of soldiers during the American Civil War.
The Christian-sponsored Girl's Higher Normal School opens in Tokyo, Japan.
C.H.S. Matthews sails from Liverpool to Australia to become a bush parson. There he will become founder of the Brotherhood of the Good Shepherd.
Death of John La Farge, a Roman Catholic artist, who had painted murals for Trinity Church, Boston, and the Church of the Ascension, New York City. He had also produced notable work in glass and other media.
Inter-Varsity Christian Fellowship was incorporated in Chicago. An interdenominational organization with chapters at both colleges and schools of nursing, IVCF provides Christian fellowship, nurture and discipleship among Christian college-age students.
© 1987-2020, William D. Blake. Portions used by permission of the author, from "Almanac of the Christian Church"