Historical Writings

Today in Christian History

Thursday, December 26

1531
German reformer Martin Luther declared: 'The inner man is a saint; the outer man is a sinner. That is why we confess in the Creed that the church is holy but pray for forgiveness of sins in the Lord's Prayer.'
1620
Plymouth Colony was settled by the "Mayflower" colonists. (In 1691 Plymouth joined other neighboring settlements to form the royal colony of Massachusetts.)
1830
Birth of William Caven, Scottish-born Canadian Presbyterian leader. He taught at Knox College, in Toronto, the last 39 years of his life. Though staunchly conservative, Caven was genuinely interested in social issues and thoroughly committed to missions.
1887
Birth of Charles Brandon Booth, American social reformer and head of the Volunteers of America, 1949-58. Booth was the grandson of Salvation Army founder William Booth.
1912
MacKay Memorial Hospital is established in Taipei in honor of Presbyterian missionary George Leslie Mackay, founder of a clinic which became the basis of the hospital. It will develop into one of the largest medical centers in Taiwan, and will retain deep Presbyterian roots.
1937
Bolsheviks shoot Isaac the Younger, a "holy father" of the Russian Orthodox Church associated with the teachings of the former Optina Monastery eighty miles north of Moscow.
1948
Hungarian authorities arrest Cardinal Josef Mindszenty, an outspoken critic of communism. Fearful that he will break under torture, he scribbles a note to his mother: "I have taken no part in any conspiracy of any kind. I shall not resign from my episcopal see. I shall not make a confession. But if despite what I now say you should read that I have confessed or resigned, and even see it authenticated by my signature, bear in mind that it will have been only the result of human frailty. In advance, I declare all such actions null and void." He will spend eight years in prison and fifteen more in asylum in the United States embassy.
1952
Demos Shakarian, founder of the Full Gospel Businessmen's Fellowship International, sees so little success that he announces the meeting of this date will be the last. However, he has a vision the night before of dead men in chains coming to life and this changes his mind. From that day things change and the fellowship grows into a huge international movement with over one thousand chapters world wide and results in the conversion of hundreds of thousands of people.
1968
Death in Oregon of historian Kenneth Scott Latourette. His most famous book was his seven-volume History of the Expansion of Christianity.
2004
A tsunami from a strong earthquake devastates towns along India's eastern shore that have large Christian populations.

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