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Historical Writings

Today in Christian History

Thursday, May 31

1567
Guido de Brès, author of the Belgic Confession, is hanged for his faith in Valenciennes.
1578
Italian archaeologist Antonio Bosio recognizes the importance of the accidental discovery of a subterranean burial place as an entrance to the catacombs of Rome and investigates. He will go on to find and explore many more underground burial places.
1638
Thomas Hooker preaches the opening sermon at First Church of Hartford, Connecticut, declaring that "the foundation of authority is laid in the free consent of the people." He will have a hand in producing an early American "constitution," the Fundamental Orders of Connecticut in 1639.
1680
Death in Bremen of Joachim Neander, German hymnwriter and Pietist.
1752
Death in London of Sidney Griffifth from tuberculosis. She had been a strong supporter of the Calvinist Methodists, going so far as to leave her husband so that she could live with Methodists at Trevecca.
1769
Anglican clergyman and hymnwriter John Newton wrote in a letter: 'He fulfills His promise in making our strength equal to our day; and every new trial gives us new proof how happy it is to be enabled to put our trust in Him.'
1821
The first Catholic cathedral in the U.S., the Cathedral of the Assumption of the Blessed Mary was dedicated in Baltimore.
1843
Methodist elder Orange Scott presides over a convention assembled at Utica, New York, to establish a new church, known as the Wesleyan Methodist Connection, because the Methodist Episcopal Church was willing to compromise on such issues as slaveholding but these Methodists were not.
1847
Thomas Chalmers, a highly-regarded leader in the Scottish Free Church, is found dead in bed this morning in Edinburgh, Scotland.
2007
Dedication in North Carolina of the Billy Graham Library is attended by two former presidents of the United States: George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton. Bush delivers the keynote address.

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