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Historical Writings

Today in Christian History

Tuesday, March 21

547
(traditional date) Death at Monte Cassino of Benedict, an Italian monastic founder, author of the famous Benedictine rule.
1098
Formation of the Cistercians, a strict monastic order, emphasizing physical labor, silence, and austerities.
1526
In Zurich, Conrad Grebel, Felix Manz, and George Blaurock escape from prison down a rope. Pacifist Anabaptists, they believed Christians should not hold power, but had been condemned to life imprisonment on concocted charges of fomenting revolution. Captured again that year, Manz and Blaurock will be again imprisoned, and Manz will be executed by drowning in 1527.
1556
Archbishop Thomas Cranmer is burned alive on orders of Mary Tudor, officially because of his "heresies" (he had been a leader in the English Reformation), but actually because of his role in providing King Henry VIII with a divorce from Mary's mother Catherine many years earlier.
1656
Death of the archbishop of Armagh, James Ussher. His Annales Veteris et Novi Testamenti proposed a biblical chronology that placed the creation of the world in 4004 BC, and his dates will be incorporated into the notes of many Bible versions.
1863
Death of Davis Griffiths, a missionary to Madagascar, who had translated the Bible into the Malagasy language.
1937
Pope Pius XI's Mit brennender sorge against some Nazi policies is read in all Catholic churches in Germany.
1979
Muslim militants burn down the fifth-century historical Coptic Church of Saint Mary the Virgin in Old Cairo.
1994
The people of Augusta, Georgia, dedicate a monument on Green Street to the memory of Christian philanthropist Emily Harvey Thomas Tubman.
2007
Teacher Christianah Oluwasesin of Nigeria is beaten to death by a mob on an accusation that she touched a student's handbag which had a Koran in it, thus defiling the Koran.

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