Today in Christian History

December 26

December 26, 1065: The first building of Westminster Abbey is dedicated, though legend holds that the abbey was founded as early as 616.

December 26, 1194: Holy Roman Emperor Frederick II is born today near the town of Jesi, in the Marche region of Italy. Frederick claimed to be a direct successor to the Roman Emperors of old and united the kingdoms of Italy, Germany, Sicily, and Jerusalem (by marriage and crusade). He was frequently at war with the popes of his era, mostly for geopolitical reasons, and was excommunicated four times during his reign.

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June 25, 1115: St. Bernard founds a monastery at Clairvaux, France, that would soon become the center of the Cistercian religious order. The order had been established 17 years earlier to restore Benedictine monasticism to a more primitive and austere state, but it is Bernard who is most closely associated with it. He founded 70 Cistercian monasteries, which in turn founded another 100 in his lifetime (see issue 24: Bernard of Clairvaux).

June 25, 1530: Lutherans present their summary of faith, known ...

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