Historical Writings

Today in Christian History

Wednesday, December 8

1649
Death of Martin Rinkart, an extraordinary pastor who wrote the beloved hymn "Now Thank We All Our God" in the midst of the sufferings of the Thirty Year's War.
1672
Jesuit explorer-missionary Jacques Marquette reaches St. Ignace on the straits of what will become the state of Michigan.
1691
Death of the English non-conformist pastor, Richard Baxter, considered the greatest preacher and probably the best-known religious author of his day.
1775
Anglican clergyman and hymnwriter John Newton wrote in a letter: 'This is faith: a renouncing of everything we are apt to call our own and relying wholly upon the blood, righteousness and intercession of Jesus.'
1869
The First Vatican Council begins. It will declare papal primacy over the entire church (not just Roman Catholicism) and papal infallibility.
1896
Death from blackwater fever of Peter Scott, pioneer missionary to Africa and a founder of the African Inland Mission.
1900
Rose Lathrop and Alice Huber found the Dominican Sisters of Hawthorne, also known as Servants of Relief for Incurable Cancer.
1907
Christmas seals were sold for the first time, to raise funds to fight tuberculosis. Today, Christmas seal income is used primarily in the fight against birth defects.
1941
Japanese police arrest some students and fifteen faculty members at the Christian school Yanjing University in Beijing.
1981
In one of its major rulings regarding the issue of the separation of Church and State, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of student organizations holding religious services at public colleges and universities.

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