Today in Christian History

January 28

January 28, 814: Charlemagne, the first Holy Roman Emperor, dies. He was, in his day, not only one of the greatest political rulers of all time, he was, in his day, more influential in church matters than the pope. He saw his task as secular ruler "to defend with our arms the holy Church of Christ against attacks by the heathen from any side and against devastation by the infidels.

January 28, 1547: England's Henry VIII, who split the church of England from Rome and presided over the founding of the Anglican church, dies (see issue 48: Thomas Cranmer).

January 28, 1769: Thomas Middleton, first Anglican bishop of Calcutta, is born in England. While he oversaw a vast diocese covering all the territories of the East India Company, the church made some great advances, including the establishment of Bishop's College in Calcutta(a training college for missionaries in Asia).

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August 23, 1723: Increase Mather, one of Colonial America's most famous clergymen, dies. Friends and colleagues mourned him as "the patriarch . . . among us" (see issue 41: American Puritans).

August 23, 1948: The "fellowship of churches which accept our Lord Jesus Christ as God and Savior" (a.k.a. the World Council of Churches) is formally constituted in Amsterdam.

August 23, 1572: Catherine de Medici sends her son, young King Charles IX of France, into a panic with threats of an imminent Huguenot ...

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