Historical Writings

Today in Christian History

Wednesday, January 28

1547
Edward VI becomes king of England and promotes the Reformation.
1568
Repose (death) of Venerable Theodosius, an Orthodox ascetic who had founded the Totma Ephraimov wilderness monastery in Volgoda.
1581
Scotland's King James VI, who in 1603 would become England's James I, signed the Second Scottish Confession of Faith.
1822
Birth of William D. Longstaff, English philanthropist. A close acquaintance of Dwight L. Moody and Ira D. Sankey, Longstaff is better remembered today as author of the hymn, "Take Time to Be Holy."
1834
Sarah L. H. Smith reaches Beirut, where she will devote her life and energy as a missionary to Syrian women.
1896
Death of Joseph Barnby in London. A noted choir leader and composer, he wrote the Oratorio Rebekah and many hymn tunes including those to which we sing "O Perfect Love," "Hail, Thou Once Despised Jesus," "Stand up, Stand up, for Jesus," "Jesus Lover of My Soul," and "When Morning Gilds the Skies." He had also led the first English performance of Dvorak's Stabat Mater.
1906
Conversion of Oswald J. Smith at a Robert A. Torrey evangelistic meeting. Smith becomes a notable evangelist as well as a hymnwriter.
1907
Death of John Paton, missionary to the New Hebrides. His wife and son died shortly after he began work. Alone and broken-hearted, he dug a grave and buried them. A man of great faith, he survived numerous threats from the islanders.
1947
In NY City, a copy of the 1640 Bay Psalm Book was purchased at an auction at Parke-Bernet Galleries for $150,000 --the highest price ever paid to date for a single volume. (The original title of the book was: "The Whole Book of Psalmes Faithfully Translated into English Metre.")
1977
The Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith published an 18-page document ruling out the admission of women to the Roman Catholic priesthood because women lacked a "natural resemblance which must exist between Christ and his ministers."

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