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Today in Christian History
Ethelbert, an Anglo-Saxon king, is baptized, having converted to Christianity weeks earlier.
Mary Dyer, Quaker, is hanged in Boston for preaching Quaker doctrine.
James Guthrie, a Covenanter, is hanged in Edinburgh. On the scaffold he says, "I do believe that Jesus Christ came into the world to save sinners of whom I am the chief," and urged his listeners to seek Christ's free grace.
Birth of Henry Francis Lyte, Scottish clergyman who wrote the hymns 'Abide with Me' and 'Jesus, I My Cross Have Taken.'
Death of Gregory XVI, a compromise selection for pope, who had governed papal estates with autocratic rigor, rejecting attempts at representative government and resisting the introduction of modern innovations such as gas lighting and railroads. Among his actions he had also issued an encyclical against slavery.
The executive board of the Baptist Foreign Mission Convention (African American) learns that W.W. Colley, their respected African-American missionary to Liberia, has shot and killed an African boy. Appalled, they order him to turn over the mission to another man. However, he is already on his way home because of illness. It turns out that the killing was accidental. He had fired a gun to frighten off a mentally ill man who had entered the property and had struck the boy without knowing it until later. An African court had already cleared him.
Birth of Ray Knighton, who in 1954 founded the Medical Assistance Program (MAP International) in Chicago.
A timid Ji Wang is baptized secretly in Taiwan. Eventually a Presbyterian missionary will convince her to get religious training in order to evangelize the tribe among whom she lives. She agrees. By her death in 1946, five thousand head hunters will have been baptized because of her ministry.
Missionary-linguist Frank C. Laubach wrote in a letter: 'I must talk about God, or I cannot keep Him in my mind. I must give Him away in order to have Him.'
The Christian Aid Mission (CIM) was chartered in Washington, DC by founder Bob Finley.
© 1987-2020, William D. Blake. Portions used by permission of the author, from "Almanac of the Christian Church"