Today in Christian History

December 3

December 3, 1552: Jesuit missionary Francis Xavier, one of the founding members of his order and one of the greatest missionaries ever, dies awaiting admission to China. Before that, he had converted 700,000 people in Portugal, India, Indonesia, Japan, and elsewhere.

December 3, 1833: Ohio's Oberlin College, the first coeducational college in the United States and one of the first to offer education to blacks, opens. Its unique character was formed as a result of the revival movement of Charles Finney, who later served as president of the school (see issue 20: Charles Finney).

December 3, 1846: Presbyterian widow Leslie Prentice leads a pro-life rally outside the home of New York City's foremost abortionist, Anna Lohman, a.k.a. Madame Restell.

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April 29, 1380: Italian mystic Catherine of Siena dies from exhaustion brought on by her efforts to bring unity to the church. Her visions, experienced since childhood, and her persistent pleading led Pope Gregory XI to return the papal seat to Rome from Avignon, France (see issue 30: Woman in the Medieval Church).

April 29, 1429: Joan of Arc, who had experienced mystical visions and voices since childhood, enters the besieged French city of Orleans to lead a victory over the English. The next Day ...

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