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Christian History

Today in Christian History

January 14

January 14, 1529: Spanish diplomat and writer Juan de Valdes publishes his "Dialogue on Christian Doctrine," which paved the way for Protestant ideas in Spain.

January 14, 1739: George Whitefield, the preacher who sparked America's first Great Awakening, is ordained to the Anglican ministry. Whitefield celebrated it as “a day of fat things” in his journal. Whitefield became famous for his open-air preaching after jealous ministers denied him the use of their pulpits, and he was perfectly suited to it—his booming voice, it was reported, could be heard a mile away (see issue 38: George Whitefield).

January 14, 1875: Theologian, medical missionary, organist, musical historian, and winner of the 1952 Nobel Peace Prize Albert Schweitzer is born. His Quest of the Historical Jesus (1906) is considered a foundational work on that subject (see issue 59: The Life and Times of Jesus).

January 14, 1892: Lutheran pastor and political activist Martin Niemoller, who was imprisoned by Hitler for his leadership role in the Confessing Church, is born (see issue 32: Dietrich Bonhoeffer).

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February 24, 1208: Francis of Assisi experiences a vision in the church of Portunicula, Italy. Though not his first vision, it convinced him to begin a mission of preaching repentance, singing, caring for lepers, and aiding the peasants. Most notably, he and his followers renounced wealth and followed absolute poverty (see issue 42: Francis of Assisi).

February 24, 1582: Gregory XIII issues a bull requiring all Catholic countries to follow October 4 with October 15 and replace the Julian calendar ...

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