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Today in Christian History
The General Council of Nicea ended. This first ecumenical conclave in the history of the Church was attended by 300 bishops, who together established the Nicene Creed and set down the lunar formula for celebrating Easter.
Archbishop Langton meets with several barons and the prelates of England who are unhappy with King John's despotic behavior. Langton reads aloud Henry I's coronation charter, on which certain English rights are based, and swears the barons to uphold it, forcing King John to sign the Magna Carta two years later.
Protestantism was formally adopted at the First General Assembly of the Church of Scotland. Scottish Parliament had earlier voted to accept a Calvinist confession of faith, declaring that the pope no longer had jurisdiction over Scotland.
Death of Thomas Shepard, a well-known Puritan preacher and author.
Joseph Mohr, 25, began serving as pastor of the St. Nicholas Church in Oberndorf, Austria. (It was Christmas Eve, 1818, when Mohr and church organist Franz Gruber, together, produced the enduring Christmas carol, "Stille Nacht"/"Silent Night.")
Birth of John Henry Jowett, English Congregational clergyman. In 1918, he succeeded G. Campbell Morgan as pastor of the famed Westminster Chapel in London.
English Bible expositor Arthur W. Pink wrote in a letter: 'None but the Lord himself can afford us any help from the awful workings of unbelief, doubtings, carnal fears, murmurings. Thank God one day we will be done forever with "unbelief."'
All foreigners are ordered to leave Suchow, compelling Mildred Cable, Francesca French, and Eva French - the China Trio - to abandon their long-time mission work in the remote regions of China.
Japanese Christian socialist Kagawa is arrested as a traitor after church services.
Execution of missionary John Birch in China. The US government, which knows the details of his undercover work, bungles a cover-up. The conservative John Birch Society, which attempts to expose such cover-ups, will take its name from this event.
© 1987-2020, William D. Blake. Portions used by permission of the author, from "Almanac of the Christian Church"