October 15: Today in Christian History

October 15: Today in Christian History

October 15, 1385

Death in prison of Dionysius, the Orthodox archbishop of Suzdal. He had founded a monastery, encouraged his people in their struggle against the Tatars, and spoken out against heretical leaders. One of those who felt the sting of his preaching, Vladimir Olgerdovich, prince of Kiev, arrested and imprisoned him.

October 15, 1573

Lutheran scholar Stephen Gerlach delivers a letter in behalf of Lutheran leaders to Ecumenical Patriarch Jeremias II to feel out the possibility of a Lutheran-Orthodox union. The overtures eventually fail because differences are too great.

October 15, 1582

With the introduction of the Gregorian calendar in Italy, France, Spain, and Portugal, October 5th becomes October 15th.

October 15, 1647

The Larger Westminster Catechism is completed.

October 15, 1846

Isaac Hecker makes his vows. He will form the Paulists, a group determined to win Americans to the Roman Catholic church.

October 15, 1894

Rainisoalambo, a diviner on Madagascar, throws away all his amulets and apparatus of divination. The night before, wretched with ulcers, he had called out to the God of Norwegian missionaries and sensed he must get rid of his sorcerous props. Doing so today, he immediately feels a weight lift off him. He knows that he has become a new man and begins reading the Bible. As he assimilates the message of the New Tesament, he will begin soul-winning. A group calling themselves “Disciples of the Lord” will form around him and become an evangelistic force on the island.

October 15, 1894

Death in Calcutta of Jani Alli, a convert from Islam, who had labored for many years as a Christian educator in Bombay and Calcutta.

October 15, 1900

Parham's Students at Bethel Bible School Spoke in Tongues 

October 15, 1906

Death of Samuel Porter (“Sam”) Jones, American Methodist evangelist. Once an alcoholic, he had fulfilled a promise to his dying father to quit drinking and found spiritual power to do so.

October 15, 1906

Death in Tokyo of Joseph Schereschewsky, who, while studying as a rabbinic student in Germany, had converted to Christianity, eventually becoming an Episcopalian. He served as a missionary to China and was bishop of Shanghai where he translated the Bible and other Christian works into the Wenli language, continuing work even after he became almost totally paralyzed.

October 15, 1932 

A small party of supporters gathered in Liverpool, England, to send Gladys Aylward, a 28-year-old parlormaid, off on a dangerous missionary journey to China. Though she'd been turned down by the missions agency she applied to, she went on to become one of the most amazing single woman missionaries of modern history. Her dramatic rescue of a hundred orphans is told in the movie "The Inn of the Sixth Happiness.

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