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Historical Writings

Today in Christian History

Tuesday, November 20

Because his prisons are full, Diocletian offers amnesty to all Christians who will sacrifice to the Roman gods.
(traditional date) Martyrdom of Edmund, King of the East Angles. Danish invaders had offered him peace at the cost of renouncing Christ but he refused, fighting to preserve his throne and his faith. Captured, he was tortured and murdered.
At the urging of Bartolomeo de las Casas, Spain passes new laws to protect American Indians.
The first Presbyterian meeting house in England was established at Wandsworth, Surrey.
The King of Warri [in Nigeria] writes the pope, pleading that missionaries be sent to his country. In response, the pope will dispatch Capuchin friars who will criss-cross the small country for four years.
Death of Isaac Backus, an influential Massachusetts Baptist leader, soulwinner, and advocate of religious freedom.
Death of Francis Lyte, Scottish clergyman and hymnwriter, who wrote "Jesus I My Cross Have Taken." He also penned the hymn, "Abide with Me, Fast Falls the Eventide." His last words are "Joy! Peace!"
George Jeffreys is converted in a revival at Shiloh Independent Chapel in Nantyfyllon, Wales. He is healed of a speech impediment and will go on to become a leading Pentecostal evangelist.
Father Charles Coughlin, a Canadian-born Catholic priest, populist radio broadcaster, and ardent supporter of Franklin Roosevelt, defends Kristallnacht, a Nazi attack on Jewish property, as a necessary retaliation for Jewish atheists in the communist government of Russia which had killed millions of Christians and confiscated Christian property. He would consistently blame Jews and Communists for the Second World War rather than the Nazis who launched it.
The Russian Orthodox Church joined the World Council of Churches.

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