February 2: Today in Christian History

February 2: Today in Christian History

February 2, 1594

Death in Italy of Roman Catholic composer Giovanni di Palestrina. He had sustained high quality and originality in writing one hundred and five masses and two hundred and fifty motets (settings of biblical texts).

February 2, 1650

Beheading of Jordan of Trebizond in Constantinople by Muslims after he had mocked their prophet and refused to convert to Islam when brought to trial.

February 2, 1738

Young George Whitefield departs for Georgia, intending to become a permanent missionary to the American colony.

February 2, 1784

Death in New Hampshire of Henry Alline, an American Free Will Baptist evangelist who had fostered growth of the “New Light” movement Canadian and New England churches.

February 2, 1829

York Minster burns all day, set on fire by Jonathan Martin, a Methodist who had escaped from a lunatic asylum and hidden in the Cathedral when it was closed the night before. York Minster has caught fire at least four times.

February 2, 1864

Death of hymnwriter Adelaide Anne Procter in London, England. Charles Dickens had published many of her verses and she had been a favorite of Queen Victoria.

February 2, 1876

The first missionary to Brazil of the Methodist Episcopal Church (South), John James Ransom, arrives in Rio de Janeiro. He will serve in the state of São Paulo for ten years, founding churches, schools, and a publishing house—building a successful work that will thrive into the twenty-first century.

February 2, 1900

Death in Pennsylvania of temperance leader Annie Wittenmeyer. She had been active in home missions, founded orphanages, edited Christian periodicals, written hymns, and authored several books. Among her significant roles was as the first president of the Women’s Christian Temperance Union which grew to 1,000 chapters under her leadership.

February 2, 1902

Macedonian rebels release Ellen Stone, an American missionary to Turkey from the Congregational Church. They had held her and an associate for five months demanding a large ransom. Friends and the American public raised the money.

February 2, 1911

College teacher Eliza George of Texas has a vision of Africans passing before the judgment seat of Christ, weeping and moaning, “But no one ever told us You died for us.” Two years later she will leave her teaching position and establish a mission in Liberia.

February 2, 1980

Tsehay Tolessa is arrested by Ethiopia’s Marxist Derg government because of her Christian work and because her pastor-theologian husband Gudina Tumsa is a target of the government. Tsehay will suffer terrible tortures in foul conditions until her release ten years later.

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