Today in Christian History

January 22

January 22, 304 (traditional date): Vincent of Saragossa, one of the most famous martyrs of the early church, is killed. Starved, racked, roasted on a gridiron, thrown into prison, and set in stocks, he refused to sacrifice. According to Augustine, his fame extended everywhere in the Roman Empire and "wherever the name of Christ was known" (see issue 27: Persecution in the Early Church).

January 22, 1899: Pope Leo XIII warns James Cardinal Gibbons, senior hierarch of the Catholic church in America, against the "phantom heresy" of Americanism—the attempt to adapt the traditional doctrines and practices of the church to a more independent modern world.

January 22, 1973: The United States Supreme court legalizes abortion in its Roe v. Wade decision.

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February 25, 616 (traditional date): Ethelbert, the first Christian English king and instigator of the first written code of British law, dies.

February 25, 1570: Pope Pius V excommunicates England's Protestant Queen Elizabeth I, declaring her to be a usurper to the throne. It was the last time a pope "deposed" a reigning monarch.

February 25, 1536: Anabaptist Jakob Hutter is tortured, whipped, and immersed in freezing water (to mock baptismal practices), then doused with brandy and burned. King Ferdinand ...

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