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Christian History

Today in Christian History

October 19

October 19, 1512: Martin Luther receives his Doctor of Theology degree from the University of Wittenberg (see issue 34: Luther's Early Years).

October 19, 1609: Dutch theologian Jacob Arminius, founder of an anti-Calvinist Reformed theology, dies at age 49 in Leiden, Netherlands (see issue 12: John Calvin).

October 19, 1720: Quaker minister John Woolman is born in Roncocas, New Jersey. He was known for his concerns to live a simple life exemplifying "the right use of things," and to end war, slavery, and injustice toward the poor and to Native Americans. His journal, written from 1756-72, influenced nineteenth-century abolitionists and demonstrated his concern for both the oppressors and the oppressed.

October 19, 1744: English revivalist George Whitefield arrives in Maine for his third (of seven) evangelistic visit to America (see issue 38: George Whitefield).

October 19, 1779: English poet William Cowper and curate John Newton publish Olney Hymns, a classic collection of evangelical and Reformed hymns.

October 19, 1856: A Sunday evening service led by Charles Haddon Spurgeon turns tragic when someone shouts "Fire!" in London's enormous Surrey Hall. There was no fire, but the stampede left 7 people dead and 28 more hospitalized. Though the episode plunged Spurgeon into weeks of depression, it also catapulted him to overnight fame (see issue 29: Charles Haddon Spurgeon).

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January 27, 398: John Chrysostom, the greatest preacher of his age, is consecrated bishop of Constantinople (see issue 44: John Chrysostom).

January 27, 417: Pelagius, a British monk, is excommunicated for heresy. He was condemned for denying original sin and claiming that men could become righteous purely by the exercise of free will. (see issue 51: Heresy in the Early Church).

January 27, 1302: On a trumped-up charge of hostility to the church and corrupt practices, Dante Alighieri is fined heavily ...

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