Today in Christian History

February 9

February 9, 249 (traditional date): According to Dionysius (died c. 264), bishop of Alexandria, on this date, Roman officials "seized that marvelous aged virgin Apolloinia, broke out all her teeth with blows on her jaws, and piling up a bonfire before the city, threatened to burn her alive if she refused to recite with them their blasphemous sayings. But she asked for a brief delay and without flinching leapt into the fire and was consumed" (see issue 27: Persecution in the Early Church).

February 9, 1881: Russian novelist Fyodor Dostoyevsky dies. A devout Russian Orthodox Christian, the author of Crime and Punishment (1866) and The Brothers Karamazov (1880) once wrote "If someone proved to me that Christ is outside the truth, and that in reality the truth were outside of Christ, then I should prefer to remain with Christ rather than with the truth.

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February 21, 1109: Anselm, the Archbishop of Canterbury recognized as the "founder of Scholasticism," dies. One of the most profound thinkers of the Middle Ages, his treatise Why Did God Become Man was the greatest medieval treatise on the atonement. He is also known for his ontological argument for the existence of God.

February 21, 1142: Medieval French philosopher, teacher, and theologian Peter Abelard dies. Perhaps best known for his (chaste) love affair with nun Heloise, Abelard made ...

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