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Historical Writings

Today in Christian History

Sunday, September 7

1643
Death of Leonard Euler, in St. Petersburg. He had been a notable mathematician and a dedicated Christian apologist. In the latter capacity, he experienced the gibes of Voltaire and of Frederick the Great.
1722
Death of Elie Neau, a French Huguenot. Because of persecution, he had fled to the New World. Captured by a French corsair, he had been returned to France where efforts were made to force him to convert to Catholicism. Having refused to give way, he was kept three years in prison, a year in the galleys, and another year in a dungeon until England obtained his release. He had said to one captor, "Sir, do not pity me, for could you but see the secret pleasures my heart experiences, you would think me happy." Later, living in the United States, he ran a school for slaves.
1785
The Sunday School Society was formed in London, under the leadership of Robert Raikes. It provided weekly Christian tutoring for the poor. Eventually 3,730 schools were formed, and their success ultimately inspired the founding in 1824 of the American Sunday School Union.
1807
Robert Morrison reaches Canton, China, where he will translate the Bible into Chinese.
1833
Death of Hannah More, Christian playwriter, Sunday school leader, and philanthropist.
1860
Death of Starets (Elder) Macarius, who had translated many Greek texts of the holy fathers into Russian, bringing renown to the Optina Monastery.
1864
Sir Michael Costa's oratorio Naaman receives its first performance - at the Birmingham Festival in England, the same venue which nineteen years earlier had premiered Mendelssohn's Elijah.
1901
The cornerstone is laid for Ida Scudder's mission hospital at Vellore, India.
1929
The Lutherans of Betafo-Ambohimanarina, Madagascar, unite in a prayer vigil for a confrontation between pastor Daniel Rajaofera and a local sorcerer that is to take place the next day. As it turns out, the sorcerer fails badly and many idolaters burn their idols on September ninth.
1964
Death in Chicago of Luigi (Louis) Francescon, a pioneer in the Italian Pentecostal movement, and an international missionary who participated in the formation of Pentecostal fellowships in Argentina, Brazil, and the US

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