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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September 20, 1224: On or about this date, on Italy's secluded Mount Alvernia, Francis of Assisi reportedly prayed, "O Lord, I beg of you two graces before I die—to experience in myself in all possible fullness the pains of your cruel passion, and to feel for you the same love that made you sacrifice yourself for us." Soon his heart was filled with both joy and pity, and wounds appeared on his hands, feet, and side. He reportedly carried these scars (called stigmata) until his death in 1226 ...

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