Today in Christian History

January 30

January 30, 1536: Catholic priest Menno Simons leaves the Roman Catholic church over his doubts about transubstantiation and converts to the Anabaptist movement, which he would soon lead (see issue 5: Anabaptists).

January 30, 1877: Responding to Henry Stanley's plea for "some pious, practical missionary" to follow up David Livingstone's missionary foray into Uganda, three members of Alexander Mackay's Church Missionary Society team arrive at King Mutesa's court. Though missions saw few immediate results, the Ugandan church quickly strengthened and grew after the missionaries' deaths (see issue 56: David Livingstone).

January 30, 1912: Evangelical missionary, philosopher, author, and lecturer Francis Schaeffer is born in Philadelphia. A leading figure in the resurgence of evangelicalism during the 1960s and 1970s, he blamed the rise of relativism for the decline of Western culture.

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April 28, 1789: In the South Pacific, a band of hedonistic sailors stages the famous mutiny on the Bounty. The mutineers then sailed to uninhabited Pitcairn Island, where they soon fell into drinking and fighting. Only one man and several women (taken earlier as slaves) and children survived. The man, Alexander Smith, discovered the ship's neglected Bible, repented, and transformed the community. The Bible is still on display in a Pitcairn church.

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