Today in Christian History
Death of Synesius of Siberia, a famous monk of the Orthodox Church.
English church leader John Henry Newman wrote in a letter: 'I wish it were possible for words to put down those indefinite, vague and withal subtle feelings which quite pierce the soul and make it sick. What a veil and curtain this world of sense is. Beautiful, but still a veil.'
Birth of Wilhelm Wrede, a German Bible scholar who contended that the gospels reflected the theology of the primitive Church rather than the true history of Jesus. Wrede thus contributed his name to the title of Albert Schweitzer's 1906 theological classic: "The Quest of the Historical Jesus: From Reimarus to Wrede."
At her urging, Ana M. Jarvis's church in Philadelphia holds one of the first Mothers' Day services. Ana supplies the church with white carnations, which had been her mom's favorite flower.
Death in Bristol, England, of hymnwriter Anna Laetitia Waring. Born Quaker, she had become an Anglican and was a social reformer active in prison visitation. Her best-known hymn was “In Heavenly Love Abiding.”
The first Southern Sociological Congress closed, in Nashville. The four-day convocation met to address "social, civic and economic problems" of sixteen Southern states, and was an example of government, social agencies and the Church working together for social betterment.
Death in Hitchin, England, of Bible scholar Henry Barclay Swete, an Anglican who had stood firmly for the Bible when modern scholarship attacked it. He was a founder of the Journal of Theological Studies and wrote The Old Testament in Greek According to the Septuagint. He was described as a “pillar of Christian learning and a pattern of Christian life.”
Bishop C.H. Phillips speaks against a movement to unite the Colored Methodist Episcopal Church with the African Methodist Episcopal and the African Methodist Episcopal Zion Churches, a plan which he says does not answer crucial questions of belief and organization. As it turns out, the movement will founder on its inability to agree on a name.
The Declaration of Union reunited the Methodist Episcopal Church in the U.S. after 109 years of division. (The Methodist Protestant Church had separated from the parent denomination in 1830, as had the Methodist Episcopal Church, South, later, in 1844.)
German bombers hit the Salvation Army's International Headquarters in London, destroying many documents of historic interest.
© 1987-2020, William D. Blake. Portions used by permission of the author, from "Almanac of the Christian Church"