Today in Christian History

January 29

January 29, 993: Ulric (890-973), bishop ofAugsburg from 923, is formally canonized by Pope John XV, the first recorded canonization by a pope.

January 29, 1499: Katherine von Bora, a German nun who married Martin Luther in 1525, is born. At their wedding, she was 26 and he was 41 (see issue 39: Luther's Later Years).

January 29, 1523: Before an audience of more than 600 people gathered at the first Zurich Disputation, Swiss reformer Ulrich Zwingli successfully defends his 67 theses. He appealed only to Scripture and rejected the authority of the pope, the sacrifice of the Mass, the invocation of saints, times and seasons of fasting, and clerical celibacy. But the city council nevertheless declared "that Master Ulrich Zwingli (may) continue to preach the Holy Gospel and the true divine Scripture as he has done until now for as long a time and to such an extent until he be instructed differently" (see issue 4: Ulrich Zwingli).

January 29, 1535: The French royal family, church officials, and many other dignitaries join in an immense torch-lit procession from the Louvre to Notre Dame—an attempt to purge Paris from the defilement caused by overzealous Protestants and their placards (a man named Feret had nailed one of the most inflammatory placards to the king's bedroom door months before). The day ended with six Protestants being hung from ropes and roasted (see issue 12: John Calvin and issue 71: Huguenots).

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February 20, 1469: Thomasso de Vio Cajetan, the most learned of the Roman Catholic dignitaries sent to silence Martin Luther in the early years of the Protestant Reformation, is born. He was also one of the cardinals who convinced Pope Clement VII to reject Henry VIII's request to divorce Catherine of Aragon (see issue 34: Luther's Early Years).

February 20, 1895: Abolitionist Frederick Douglass, the first African-American to hold high political office, dies. After escaping to freedom in 1838, he ...

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