Christian History Institute

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Christian History

George Friedrich Handel

It Happened Today: Handel’s Messiah Masterpiece (1742)

Handel’s career took off when he began writing English choral works.

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In the Hour of Silence

Devotional (2016 church year): Be a Living Letter (1899)

Once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God —1 Peter 2:10...

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Death of Mahay Choramo of the Wolaitta Kale Heywat Church of Ethiopia. He had evangelized widely in the Omo region and suffered many imprisonments and beatings for preaching the gospel—sometimes at the hands of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church. He had even gone naked when one culture demanded it but gradually taught the people to wear clothes.

Authority for the date:

Dictionary of African Christian Biography.


Ordination of J. Wilbur Chapman, who will become a leading Presbyterian evangelist, working in tandem with music vocalist Charles Alexander.

Authority for the date:


At 10 p.m. emissaries of the Paris Commune enter the city’s deaconess house, revolvers in hand, demanding that deaconesses state if any of them have been abused by the sisters in charge. None of the girls speaks badly of the sisters although held captive until 3 a.m.

Authority for the date:

Bancroft, Jane M. Deaconesses in Europe.


Death of Christian poet Jane Taylor. One of her best known hymns has the words “Ye tempting sweets, forbear, Ye dearest idols, fall, My heart ye can not share, For Jesus must have all.”

Authority for the date:



Death of Meletius Syrigos, one of the most learned Orthodox preachers and theologians of his day, but combative.

Authority for the date:

Betz, Hans Dieter, et al. Religion Past and Present.


France’s King Henry IV promulgates the edict of Nantes, granting his Protestant Huguenot subjects a large measure of religious freedom.

Authority for the date:

Stevenson, William. Story of the Reformation. Richmond: John Knox Press, 1959.

Death of Paulus Diaconis. This monk had been called to Charlemagne’s court where he compiled a book of homilies from the church fathers which received wide circulation throughout the empire. He also prepared an accurate history of the Lombards and numerous other historical and religious works. Authority for the date: Standard encyclopedias.
During Easter Week, Bishop Ambrose of Milan risks imprisonment and death, defying orders of the Roman empress to surrender one of his churches for use by Arians. With the church surrounded by imperial troops, he continues to hold mass five times a day. Eventually the government capitulates. Authority for the date: Standard encyclopedias, and a table of Easter dates.