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Today in Christian History
The first Lutheran martyrs of the Reformation are burned alive this day in Brussels. Johann Esch (Johann van den Esschen) and Heinrich Voes (Hendrick Voss), young Augustinians at Antwerp, followers of Luther, had been forced to choose between recantation or death.
Gentle John Bradford is burned to death as a heretic during the reign of Mary Tudor. As he is led to his death, crowds line the way, weeping and praying for him. In the Tower of London, he had ministered to criminals.
The Westminster Assembly first convened in England, from which would emerge the Westminster longer and shorter catechisms.
Nineteen-year-old Chevalier de la Barre is decapitated and burned at Abbeville, France, for mutilating a figure of Christ that stood on the bridge of that town, an offence regarded as blasphemy. On the scaffold de la Barre remarks calmly, "I did not believe they could have taken the life of a young man for so small a matter."
The earliest recorded Methodist camp meeting in America was held in Logan County Kentucky, near the Gaspar River Church.
Robert Murray McCheyne is licensed to preach at the Presbytery of Annam, where he will become a famous pastor and revivalist.
In Wisconsin, the Gideons were founded by three traveling businessmen. They placed their first Bibles in 1908 at the Superior Hotel in Iron Mountain, Montana.
Martin Niemoller, a leading Lutheran who resists Nazi racism, is arrested by the Gestapo. Released once, he will be arrested again and will spend many years in prison.
Birth of Andrae Crouch, African-American sacred music artist. His most enduring gospel songs have been 'Soon and Very Soon,' 'My Tribute' and 'Through It All.'
The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that public school teachers may not enter parochial school classrooms, to provide remedial or enrichment instruction.
© 1987-2020, William D. Blake. Portions used by permission of the author, from "Almanac of the Christian Church"