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Historical Writings

Today in Christian History

Saturday, April 5

582
Death of Eutychius, patriarch of Constantinople, who had maintained that after the resurrection the body will be more subtle than air and no longer palpable, a position that the future Pope Gregory the Great vehemently opposed.
1614
Indian Princess Pocahontas, a convert to Christianity, marries English colonist John Rolfe.
1735
Death at Upminster of William Derham, a Church of England clergyman and scientist, who had measured the speed of sound with more accuracy than had been achieved before.
1784
Birth of Louis Spohr, German violin virtuoso and composer. He is best remembered today for composing the hymn tunes GERALD ("I Want a Principle Within") and SPOHR ("All Things Bright and Beautiful").
1803
The first complete performance of Beethoven's oratorio Christ on the Mount of Olives takes place in Vienna.
1834
Matthew Simpson rides away from the medical profession in Ohio to become a Methodist itinerant preacher. At the time he still struggles even to speak with people. However he will become a notable educator and bishop.
1922
Death in Bombay of Indian intellectual, evangelist, and philanthropist Pandita Ramabai.
1940
Death in Calcutta, India, of Charles Freer Andrews, an Anglican priest and missionary to India, where he had assisted the poor and pursued social justice. He had been a close friend of Mahatma Gandhi.
1953
In Washington, D.C., President Dwight Eisenhower inaugurated the Presidential Prayer Breakfast. (Its name was later changed to the Annual National Prayer Breakfast.)
1956
East German authorities dynamite ruins of the Ulrich church in Magdeburg, despite Christian protests. Religious leaders' plans to rebuild the historic sanctuary are ignored. It dates back to 1023 but has been damaged in the war.

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