Historical Writings

Today in Christian History

Monday, July 8

Death of French monk Peter the Hermit at Neufmoutier-by-Huy. He had helped inspire the Crusades. Authority for the date: Standard encyclopedias.
Death of Blessed Pope Eugene III. He had fled to France during disturbances in Rome. Authority for the date: Brusher, Jospeh. Popes Through the Ages.
Jan Hus's De ecclesia (On the Church) is read in Bethlehem chapel, Prague. Cardinal D'Ailly will later complain at the Council of Constance that it combats the pope's plenary authority as much as the Koran. Authority for the date: Schaff, Philip. History of the Christian Church.
Pope Gregory XV issues a brief allowing Philip Neri's Congregations of the Oratory to govern themselves independently of one another. Authority for the date: Bacci, Father. The Life of Saint Philip Neri. London: Kegan, Paul, Trech, Trübner & Co., 1902.
Death of Pope Gregory XV in Rome from a fever, after several days in great misery. Authority for the date: Standard encyclopedias.
Archibald Campbell, Marquis of Argyle, arrives at Whitehall to congratulate King Charles II on his accession to the throne, but as soon as the king hears his name announced, he stamps his foot and orders Sir William Fleming to execute his orders, which are to imprison Argyle in the Tower. Argyle had stood with the Parliamentarians in the recent civil war. Authority for the date: www.electricscotland.com/history/other/campbell_archibald.htm.
Following restoration of the English monarchy, a new charter was issued to the American colony of Rhode Island. It guaranteed religious freedom regardless of 'differences in opinion in matters of religion.'
Death of Johann Rudolph Ahle, a composer of sacred music who had avoided polyphonic counterpoint and confined himself to the simple "chorale" style. Some of his songs will still be popular centuries later. Authority for the date: Evangelical Lutheran Hymnary Handbook.
Death in Thuringia of Georg Neumark, German educator and hymnwriter, author, and composer of the hymn "If Thou but Suffer God to Guide Thee." Twice during his life he had lost everything he owned: once to robbers and once to fire. These losses seem to have contributed much to the depth of his religious verse. Authority for the date: Standard encyclopedias.
Death of Robert South, a Church of England preacher, Latinist, and author well-known for participation in doctrinal controversies, often opposing with wit and invective the very positions he had formerly held, yet boldly attacking the vices of his age. Authority for the date: Dictionary of National Biography.
Influencing the start of New England's 'Great Awakening,' colonial American theologian Jonathan Edwards preached his classic sermon, 'Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God,' at Enfield, CT.
Birth of Lowell Mason, Presbyterian pioneer of congregational singing. He composed over 1,000 hymn tunes, including BETHANY ('Nearer, My God, To Thee'), DENNIS ('Blest Be the Tie That Binds'), and HAMBURG ('When I Survey the Wondrous Cross').
The remains of eccentric preacher William Huntington, formerly a coal shoveler, are transferred from a temporary grave at Tonbridge Wells to a permanent one at Lewes. The gravestone is inscribed with an epitaph he had written a few days before death, leaving space for dates and age: "Here lies the Coal-heaver, who departed this life [July 1, 1813] in the [69th]; beloved of his God, but abhorred by men. The Omniscient Judge, at the Great Assize, shall ratify and confirm this, to the confusion of many thousands; for England and its metropolis shall know that there hath been a prophet among them. W.H. S.S." S.S. means "Sinner Saved." Authority for the date: Chambers Book of Days (1881).
After just a month in America where he was to lecture, Dietrich Bonhoeffer departs for Germany, writing to Reinhold Niebuhr, "I have made a mistake in coming to America. I must live through this difficult period of our national history with the Christian people of Germany. I will have no right to participate in the reconstruction of Christian life in Germany after the war if I do not share the trials of this time with my people." Authority for the date: Christian History 32 (1991).
The Moscow Conference convened to celebrate the 500th anniversary of the independence of the Russian Orthodox Church from control of the Eastern Orthodox Patriarchate of Constantinople.
Meeting in Oberlin, OH, the Congregational Christian and the Evangelical and Reformed churches adopted a united statement of faith. (The two groups merged to form the United Church of Christ in 1961.)
Death of James Curtis Wakhu, a zealous evangelist for Sheepfold Ministries, especially among the Muslims of Kenya. He had experienced three years of undiagnosed pain. Authority for the date: Dictionary of African Christian Biography.
Vonette Bright celebrates the release of a new series of books, My Heart in His Hands, at a Sunday reception in Atlanta. The four-book devotional series for women has been written to complement the seasons of a women's life through inspiring stories and Scripture verses, with much of the content culled from her Women Today radio program. Authority for the date: House of James.
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