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Christian History

Today in Christian History

November 18

November 18, 1095: Pope Urban II opens the Council of Clermont to reform the Church and to plan the First Crusade. The 200 bishops attending the council decreed that those traveling to Jerusalem would be granted a plenary indulgence (see issue 40: The Crusades).

November 18, 1302: Pope Boniface VIII publishes "Unam Sanctam," declaring there is "One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church" outside of which there is "neither salvation nor remission of sins." Emphasizing the pope's position as Supreme Head of the Church, it also demanded that temporal powers subjugate themselves to spiritual ones (see issue 70: Dante Alighieri).

November 18, 1874: The Women's Christian Temperance Union is founded in Cleveland. Claiming the power of the Holy Spirit, Protestant members would march into saloons and demand they be closed. It was the largest temperance organization and the largest women's organization in the U.S. before 1900.

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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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