Today in Christian History

September 14

September 14, 258: Cyprian, bishop of Carthage, is beheaded during the persecution under Roman Emperor Valerian (see issue 27: Persecution in the Early Church).

September 14, 407: Early church father John Chrysostom, the greatest preacher of his age, dies in exile when, in poor health, he is forced to travel on foot in bad weather (see issue 44: John Chrysostom).

September 14, 1321: Dante Alighieri, author of The Divine Comedy, dies (see issue 70: Dante Alighieri).

September 14, 1741: George Frederick Handel finishes composing "The Messiah," begun only 24 days earlier.

September 14, 1814: Francis Scott Key, Episcopal layman and cofounder of the American Sunday School Union, is inspired to write "The Star-Spangled Banner" during the bombardment of Fort McHenry during the war of 1812. The song didn't become the national anthem until 1931.

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February 22, 1906: Black itinerant evangelist William J. Seymour arrives in Los Angeles to lead a Holiness mission. The group grew larger as word spread of its revival meetings and speaking in tongues, and it eventually moved to a rundown building on Azusa Street. The church's revival is often cited as one of the birthplaces of Pentecostalism (see issue 58: Pentecostalism).

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