Today in Christian History

November 20

November 20, 1541: In Switzerland, French reformer John Calvin, 32, established a theocratic government at Geneva, thereby creating a home base for emergent Protestantism throughout Europe (see issue 12: John Calvin).

November 20, 1572: The first Presbyterian meeting house in England is established at Wandsworth, Surrey.

November 20, 1620: Peregrine White, son of William and Susanna White, is the first child born on the Mayflower (see issue 41: The American Puritans).

November 20, 1806: Baptist preacher Isaac Backus, an influential voice in arguing for religious liberty in Massachusetts and later the United States, dies (see issue 6: Baptists).

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July 30, 1718: William Penn, founder of Pennsylvania as a colony for Quakers to enjoy religious liberty, dies.

July 30, 1775: The U.S. Army founds its chaplaincy, making it the Army's oldest division after the infantry.

July 30, 1956: In God We Trust becomes the official motto of the United States by an act of Congress signed by President Dwight D. Eisenhower (see the U.S. Treasury website).

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