Today in Christian History
German reformer Martin Luther wrote in a letter: 'There has never been a great revelation of God's Word unless God has first prepared the way by the rise and the flourishing of languages and learning, as though these were forerunners, a sort of John the Baptist.'
English reformer John Hooper and his wife are welcomed to Zurich by Heinrich Bullinger, having temporarily left England because of persecution by King Henry VIII. Hooper will perish at the stake under Mary Tudor.
First Jesuits arrive in Brazil led by Father Manuel de Nobrega.
The first Swedish colonists in America established a Lutheran settlement at Fort Christiana in the Colony of Delaware.
Death of Captain Thomas Coram. Appalled at the sight of children dying in London's streets, he had urged the creation of the Foundling Hospital in that city. The orphanage will be claimed as the world's first incorporated charity and in its chapel the captain's remains will be interred on April 3.
Death in London of Emanuel Swedenborg, a versatile thinker who had made contributions to science, but later in life veered into mysticism. His writings claimed direct revelations from God and angels to restore the true Christian religion. He had also claimed he spoke with extraterrestrials from the moon, Mercury, and other planets in the solar system. Centuries later, his thought will still have adherents and defenders.
Death of Charles Wesley in London. An evangelist like his more famous brother, John, he also wrote many hymns of the highest quality.
The Kentucky Baptist Convention was organized in Frankfort with delegates representing nine congregations within the state.
Death at Clifton, England (near Bristol), of Dora Greenwell, Christian poet and hymn writer. Her two best-known hymns are “And Art Thou Come with us to Dwell?” and “I Am not Skilled to Understand.”
Ezra Lawiri is fatally wounded by an artillery shell as the Sudanese battle around him. An Episcopal priest, educator, author, and translator, he had refused to take refuge in Kenya, saying death would overtake him wherever he was when his time came.
© 1987-2020, William D. Blake. Portions used by permission of the author, from "Almanac of the Christian Church"