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Today in Christian History
German reformer Martin Luther wrote in a letter: 'There has never been a great revelation of God's Word unless God has first prepared the way by the rise and the flourishing of languages and learning, as though these were forerunners, a sort of John the Baptist.'
English reformer John Hooper and his wife are welcomed to Zurich by Heinrich Bullinger, having temporarily left England because of persecution by King Henry VIII. Hooper will perish at the stake under Mary Tudor.
Death of Captain Thomas Coram. Appalled at the sight of children dying in London's streets, he had urged the creation of the Foundling Hospital in that city. The orphanage will be claimed as the world's first incorporated charity and in its chapel the captain's remains will be interred on April 3.
Death in London of Emanuel Swedenborg, a versatile thinker who had made contributions to science, but later in life veered into mysticism. His writings claimed direct revelations from God and angels to restore the true Christian religion. He had also claimed he spoke with extraterrestrials from the moon, Mercury, and other planets in the solar system. Centuries later, his thought will still have adherents and defenders.
Death of Charles Wesley in London. An evangelist like his more famous brother, John, he also wrote many hymns of the highest quality.
The Kentucky Baptist Convention was organized in Frankfort with delegates representing nine congregations within the state.
Birth of Winfield Scott Weeden, American sacred chorister and hymnwriter. During his life he led music and singing schools for the YMCA and Christian Endeavor. Of his several musical compositions, Weeden is best remembered today for the hymn, "I Surrender All."
Death at Clifton, England (near Bristol), of Dora Greenwell, Christian poet and hymn writer. Her two best-known hymns are "And Art Thou Come with us to Dwell?" and "I Am not Skilled to Understand."
Death at Newark, New Jersey, of hymn writer Ray Palmer. His most famous hymn is "My Faith Looks up to Thee."
Death of Ambrosius of Georgia in Tbilisi. He had been the partriarch of all Georgia, a historian of his people and their church, and a staunch opponent of Soviet communism. The Soviets had imprisoned him and his death came shortly after his release.
© 1987-2020, William D. Blake. Portions used by permission of the author, from "Almanac of the Christian Church"