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Christian History

Today in Christian History

April 1

April 1, 1548: Parliament orders the publication of the Book of Common Prayer (BCP). Though Thomas Cranmer is rightly credited with the final form of the BCP, he worked with a committee of scholars, including Reformer Martin Bucer, to shape his famous liturgy (see Issue 48: Thomas Cranmer

April 1, 1745: David Brainerd begins his missionary work among the Native Americans of New Jersey, having previously worked in Massachusetts and Pennsylvania. The New Jersey natives showed more interest than most, but Brainerd died of tuberculosis only two years into his work there. Still, his diary, published by Jonathan Edwards, became a major force in promoting missions work, inspiring missionaries like William Carey, Henry Martyn, and Thomas Coke (see issue 77: Jonathan Edwards).

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April 14, 1759: George Frideric Handel, composer of the oratorio Messiah, dies at age 74 in London.

April 14, 1775: America's first society to abolish slavery organizes in Philadelphia.

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