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Historical Writings

Today in Christian History

Saturday, September 15

1622
Father Camillo Constanzo is burned alive at Hirado, Japan, in a heroic martyrdom witnessed by thousands.
1648
The Larger and the Shorter Catechisms -- both prepared by the Westminster Assembly the previous year -- were approved by the British Parliament. These two documents have been in regular use among various Presbyterians, Congregationalists and Baptists ever since.
1770
English founder of Methodism John Wesley wrote in a letter: 'To use the grace given is the certain way to obtain more grace. To use all the faith you have will bring an increase of faith.'
1801
Talleyrand, acting for Napoleon, and Monsignor Ercole Consalvi, acting for Pope Pius VII, sign a concordat restoring and reorganizing the Catholic Church in France but limiting its power.
1853
Antoinette Brown is ordained as minister of the Congregational Church of South Butler, apparently the first woman ordained in a mainline Protestant denomination in the United States. She had trained for many years at Oberlin, but the college had refused her a degree. Eventually she will adopt Unitarian beliefs.
1855
Death in Virginia of James Chisholm. Rector of St. John's Episcopal Church in Portsmouth, Virginia, he had stayed to care for victims of yellow fever when most doctors fled. After gruelling efforts in behalf of the sick, he succumbed to the disease himself.
1877
The Pacific Garden Mission opens its world-famous rescue work in Chicago.
1912
Patriarch Mar Abdedmassiah consecrates Mar Ivanios at St. Mary's Church, in Niranam, India. Ivanios takes the name Mar Baselios Paulose I and is the first Catholicose of the Malankara Church. After years of conflict with the Patriarch of Antioch, the Orthodox Church of India thus becomes autocephalous (an independent church).
1963
A racially motivated bombing kills four African-American girls at the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Alabama. Ironically, the sermon that day was to be "The Love That Forgives," based on Matthew 5:43-44.
1966
The American Bible Society published the New Testament of its "Today's English Version" (TEV), otherwise known as "Good News for Modern Man." It marked the end of a two-year effort led by chief translator, Robert G. Bratcher. (The complete Good News Bible was published in 1976.)

Copyright Statement
© 1987-2020, William D. Blake. Portions used by permission of the author, from "Almanac of the Christian Church"