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Historical Writings

Today in Christian History

Thursday, October 31

451
At the 15th Session of the Council of Chalcedon, Canon 28 was adopted, granting Constantinole a patriarchate extending over the civil dioceses of Pontus, Asia, and Thrace.
1503
Election of Julian Rovere to be pope. He takes the name Julius II.
1517
German Augustinian monk Martin Luther, 31, nailed to the door of the castle church in Wittenberg a list of 95 theological points he wished to debate ... and touched off the Protestant Reformation!
1731
Catholic archbishop Leopold von Firmian of Salzburg, Austria, issues an edict expelling all Lutherans from his territory. About twenty thousand people have to leave. Many have nowhere to go and freeze to death in the coming winter.
1772
Thomas and Samuel Green of New Haven publish "A Sermon" by Indian preacher Samson Occum which he had given the month before at the hanging of an Indian man for murder. The sermon becomes wildly successful, going through ten editions in eight years.
1870
Birth of Hugh Ross Mackintosh, Scottish theologian. Teaching systematics at Edinburgh 1904-35, Mackintosh had a firm grasp of the German theological writers of his day and sought to make their teachings known in Britain, for which he was unfairly judged a liberal.
1879
Death of Jacob Abbott, American Congregationalist author. He wrote many groundbreaking works of children's fiction, including the instructional Rollo series and the warm Franconia novels.
1920
Baptism of Spetume Florence Njangali in Saint Peter's Cathedral, Hoima, Uganda. She will become a leader in the effort to obtain theological education for women and their ordination as deaconesses in the Anglican church of Uganda.
1999
Catholics and Lutherans issue a joint statement on justification in Augsburg, Germany, showing that "a consensus in basic truths of the doctrine of justification exists between Lutherans and Catholics."
2010
Al Qaida terrorists besiege Our Lady of Perpetual Help Church in Baghdad, massacring most of the 120 worshipers inside, including a three year old boy who pleads with them to stop killing.

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