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Christian History

Today in Christian History

March 29

March 29, 1139: In the bull "Omne Datum Optimum," Pope Innocent II grants the Templars "every best gift" and makes them an independent unit within the church. Created to protect pilgrims from bandits in the Holy Land, the Templars rose in influence and wealth and eventually earned the jealousy of other Christians (see issue 40: The Crusades).

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June 17, 1703: John Wesley, founder of Methodism, is born in Epworth, England, to parents Samuel and Susanna. Though Methodism's emphasis on grace and instantaneous (often emotional) conversion marked a radical departure from high church tradition, Wesley always considered himself an Anglican (see issue 2: John Wesley and issue 69: The Wesleys).

June 17, 1963: The U.S. Supreme Court rules 8-1 that states cannot require the recitation of the Lord's Prayer or Bible verses in public schools.

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