Historical Writings

Today in Christian History

Thursday, November 20

Because his prisons are full, Diocletian offers amnesty to all Christians who will sacrifice to the Roman gods.
In Switzerland, French reformer John Calvin, 32, established a theocratic government at Geneva, thereby creating a home base for emergent Protestantism throughout Europe.
At the urging of Bartolomeo de las Casas, Spain passes new laws to protect American Indians.
The first Presbyterian meeting house in England was established at Wandsworth, Surrey.
Ecumenical Patriarch Jeremias II issues a Tomus on the question of the Gregorian calendar, which the Orthodox Church rejects, sticking with the traditional Julian calendar.
Death of Isaac Backus, an influential Massachusetts Baptist leader, soulwinner, and advocate of religious freedom.
Death of Francis Lyte, Scottish clergyman and hymnwriter, who wrote "Jesus I My Cross Have Taken." He also penned the hymn, "Abide with Me, Fast Falls the Eventide." His last words are "Joy! Peace!"
Amanda Smith, feeling dull, sees a vision saying "Go Preach." She becomes a well-known African-American evangelist who travels world-wide.
The hymn penned by Annie Sherwood Hawks, 36 -- "I Need Thee Every Hour" -- was first sung at a National Baptist Sunday School Convention in Cincinnati, Ohio.
The Russian Orthodox Church joined the World Council of Churches.

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