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Christian History

Today in Christian History

November 22

November 22, 1220: Pope Honorius III crowns Frederick II Holy Roman Emperor in an attempt to reestablish relations between emperor and pope. But Frederick's reign would become increasingly anti-papal, messianic, and eschatological. His supporters hailed him as a messiah; his enemies branded him Antichrist. When he died in 1250, both sides were shocked (see issue 61: The End of the World).

November 22, 1873: The French ship Ville du Havre sinks in the north Atlantic, killing all four daughters of Chicago lawyer Horatio G. Spafford. His wife survived, and Spafford immediately booked passage to join her in England. While passing over the spot where his daughters died, he began writing what would become the famous hymn "It Is Well with My Soul.

November 22, 1963: British scholar and author C.S. Lewis dies, the very same day as Aldous Huxley and John F. Kennedy (see issue 7: C.S. Lewis).

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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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