Death in Stockbridge, Massachusetts, of Reinhold Niebuhr, a prominent neo-orthodox and realist theologian. Deeply concerned with the conditions of working people, he had rejected the Social Gospel, liberal utopianism, and naive biblical literalism. He was an anti-communist who helped found Americans for Democratic Action. Niebuhr taught at Union Theological Seminary for thirty years and wrote many influential books. Christians who know nothing else about him may still have recited some form of his popular Serenity Prayer: “God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference.”Authority for the date:
A timid Ji Wang is baptized secretly in Taiwan. Eventually a Presbyterian missionary will convince her to get religious training in order to evangelize the tribe among whom she lives. She agrees. By her death in 1946, five thousand head hunters will have been baptized because of her ministry.Authority for the date:
Biographical Dictionary of Chinese Christianity.
The executive board of the Baptist Foreign Mission Convention (African American) learns that W.W. Colley, their respected African-American missionary to Liberia, has shot and killed an African boy. Appalled, they order him to turn over the mission to another man. However, he is already on his way home because of illness. It turns out that the killing was accidental. He had fired a gun to frighten off a mentally ill man who had entered the property and had struck the boy without knowing it until later. An African court had already cleared him.Authority for the date:
Jacobs, Sylvia M. Black Americans & the Missionary Movement in Africa. Greenwood Press, 1982.
- Death of John F. Oberlin, a missionary to the Vosges Mountains on the French/German border. In addition to teaching Bible principles, he had showed his people how to make their way out of crushing poverty. Authority for the date: http://www.oberlin.edu/external/EOG/OYTT-images/JFO.html
Joseph Hawley, spiritually depressed, commits suicide in Northampton, causing the collapse of a revival led by Jonathan Edwards.Authority for the date:
Christian History 77 (2003).
James Guthrie, a Covenanter, is hanged in Edinburgh. On the scaffold he says, “I do believe that Jesus Christ came into the world to save sinners of whom I am the chief,” and urged his listeners to seek Christ’s free grace.Authority for the date:
McFeeters, J. C. Sketches of the Covenanters.
- Mary Dyer, Quaker, is hanged in Boston for preaching Quaker doctrine. Authority for the date: Deen, Edith. Great Women of the Christian Faith. New York: Harper, 1959.
George “Gennadius” Scholarios becomes the first ecumenical patriarch of the Orthodox Church to serve under a Muslim conqueror when Mohammed II invests him with the crosier and mantle.Authority for the date:
Fortescue, Adrian. "Gennadius II." Catholic Encyclopedia. Appleton, 1909.
Ethelbert, an Anglo-Saxon king, is baptized, having converted to Christianity weeks earlier.Authority for the date:
William Smith and Henry Wace. A Dictionary of Christian Biographies, Literature, Sects and Doctrines.... London: Jo