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Christian History

Today in Christian History

September 26

September 26, 1460: Pope Pius II assembles European leaders, then delivers a three-hour sermon to inspire them to launch a new crusade against the Turks. The speech works, but then another speaker, Cardinal Bessarion, adds a three-hour sermon of his own. After six hours of preaching, the European princes lose all interest in the cause; they never mount the called-for crusade.

September 26, 1897: Charles C. Overton, a Sunday school superintendent at Brighton Chapel, Staten Island, spontaneously promotes the idea of a Christian flag. The Rally Day speaker hadn't shown up, so Overton gave an extemporaneous address on Christian meanings for the elements of the American flag. The red, white, and blue cross flag Overton later helped devise was first sewn around 1907 and continues to be used in some churches.

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November 29, 1898: Christian writer and scholar C.S. Lewis, one of modern Christianity's best-loved writers, is born in Belfast, Ireland (see issue 7: C.S. Lewis).

November 29, 1530: Thomas Wolsey, cardinal and Lord Chancellor to England's King Henry VIII, dies. Known as "a statesman rather than a churchman," Wolsey dismantled monasteries to fund Oxford University and devoted his life to king and country (see issue 48: Thomas Cranmer).

November 29, 1847: Missionary physician Marcus ...

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