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Today in Christian History
Nero begins the first imperial persecution of Christians.
Birth of Theodore Beza, French-born Swiss theological reformer. Beza became the acknowledged leader of the Swiss Calvinists, following John Calvin's death in 1564.
King Gustavus of Sweden assembled the Diet of Wester's, for the purpose of carrying through the Protestant Reformation in Sweden.
The Wissahickon Hermits (Pietists) land in Philadelphia.
Death of Henry Venn, the elder, an evangelical pastor and author of considerable influence in eighteenth-century England, father of John Venn (a leader in the Clapham Sect that did so much to ameliorate social conditions in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries), and grandfather of the notable mission leader Henry Venn, the younger.
Birth of George J. Webb, American church organist. He compiled several collections of sacred music during his lifetime, and also composed the melody to the hymn, 'Stand Up, Stand Up for Jesus.'
Execution of Chinese convert and Catholic priest Joseph Yuan Zaide in China's Sichuan Province.
Nikolai, future missionary from Russia to Japan, becomes a monk.
Consecration in New York of Samuel David Ferguson, the first African-American Bishop of the Protestant Episcopal Church.
Death of James C. Sheafe, a learned African-American pastor, who brought African Americans into the Seventh-day Adventist movement, but also founded independent seventh-day movements because of disagreement with the racial teachings of the main movement. "That man could preach, and pray, and sing like nobody you have ever heard," remarked another Adventist preacher who had heard most of the early Adventists.
© 1987-2020, William D. Blake. Portions used by permission of the author, from "Almanac of the Christian Church"