Today in Christian History
Birth of St. Augustine of Hippo, greatest of the Early Latin Church Fathers. Of his many writings, two have endured: "Confessions" describes the circumstances leading to his conversion to the Christian faith, and "The City of God" was written as a Christian view of the sacking of Rome by the Visigoths in the year 410.
Opening of the Second Council of Seville, the largest ever held in Spain. Among its many decisions was a ruling that baptism only required a single dipping and that hymns by authors such as Ambrose, with texts not taken directly from Scripture, are allowable in church services.
Death of Pope Nicholas I the Great, who had been a strong proponent for Roman primacy in the church.
(probable date) Death of Yaballah III, originally known as Rabban Markos from Beijing, who traveled west with Bar Sauma, and became a Patriarch of the East Syrian Church.
Massachusetts passes a law against Baptists, calling them "troublers of churches" and subjecting them to banishment.
Anglican missionary to Persia, Henry Martyn wrote in his journal: 'God and eternal things are my only pleasure.'
Death of Prince Owusu-Ansa, who had worked as a Methodist evangelist in Ghana for many years. He had become a Christian while held hostage by the British.
Death of Francis Thompson, the English poet who wrote "The Hound of Heaven," showing how God in grace pursued him after he had wrecked his life with opium addiction.
Lenin writes to Maxim Gorki, "Every religious idea, every idea of God, even flirting with the idea of God, is unutterable vileness...."
Pope Pius XI beatifies Francis Xavier Cabrini, founder of the Missionary Sisters of the Sacred Heart, placing her on a track to become the first American citizen to be canonized as a saint. Italian-born, she had gone to America to aid Italian immigrants.
© 1987-2020, William D. Blake. Portions used by permission of the author, from "Almanac of the Christian Church"