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Institute, Department of Archives and History for the Lutheran Church--Missouri Synod.

Today in History

March 25

The Annunciation of Our Lord

752 Pope-elect Stephen died before taking office.

1347 Catherine of Siena, Italian saint, was born (d. 29 April 1380).

1400 Florens Radewyns, leader of the Brethren of the Common Life, died (b. ca. 1350).

1409 The Council of Pisa was assembled for the primary purpose of deposing two rival popes, Benedict XII (13941417) and Gregory XII (14061415). The return of the papacy to Rome from Avignon, France (13091377), created the Great Schism (13781417), which saw as many as three rival popes, each claiming legitimate papal powers. The council elected Alexander V on 26 June.

1522 Upon his recovery from battle wounds, Ignatius of Loyola (14911556) visited the Benedictine monastery of Montserrat, where he hung his military accouterments before the image of the Virgin of Montserrat. Then he led a period of asceticism to found later the Society of Jesus.

1528 Jakob Andreae, Formula of Concord co-author, was born (d. 7 January 1590). [German Wikipedia article]

1549 Veit Dietrich, reformer, died (b. 8 December 1506). [German Wikipedia article]

1593 Jean de Brébeuf, French Jesuit missionary to Canada, was born (d. 16 March 1649).

1609 Olaus Martini, Swedish archbishop of Uppsala, died (b. 1557)

1655 Puritans took control of Maryland at the Battle of the Severn.

1740 Construction began on the Bethesda Orphanage in Savannah, Georgia, the oldest existing orphanage in America. It was built and paid for from contributions raised by English revivalist George Whitefield (17141770) through his public preaching both in England and America.

1783 Andrew Grassman, traveling missionary to Germany, Sweden, Lapland and Greenland, died (b. 23 February 1704).

1783 Luther Rice, missionary to India, was born in Northborough, Massachusetts (d. 25 September 1836).

1797 Social reformer John Winebrenner, founder of the Church of God (now known as the Churches of God, General Conference), was born in Maryland (d. 12 September 1860).

1807 The Slave Trade Act became law, abolishing the slave trade in the British Empire.

1811 Percy Bysshe Shelley (17921822) was expelled from the University of Oxford for his publication of the pamphlet The Necessity of Atheism.

1822 Albrecht Ritschl, a leading German Protestant theologian of the last half of the nineteenth century, was born in Berlin (d. 20 March 1889).

1823 Godfrey Thring, Anglican clergyman and hymnist, was born at Alford, Somerset (d. 13 September 1903).

1843 Robert Murray M'Cheyne (b. 21 May 1813), Church of Scotland minister, died.

1846 Martin Joseph Schmidt, president of Concordia College (Fort Wayne, Indiana), was born in Altenburg, Perry County, Missouri (d. 1 May 1931).

1859 Jens Christian Roseland, Augustana Synod leader, was born in Sandnes, Jaederen, Norway (d. 17 December 1930).

1863 Elling Hove, a professor at Luther College (Decorah, Iowa) and Luther Seminary (Saint Paul, Minnesota), was born at Northwood, Iowa (d. 17 December 1927).

1876 The Home Mission Board of the Northern Presbyterian Church sent its first missionaries to the American Indians.

1877 John H. Stockton (b. 19 April 1813), American Methodist pastor and hymn writer, died.

1886 Athenagoras I, Greek Patriarch of Constantinople, was born (d. 7 July 1972).

1890 The Finnish Evangelical Lutheran Church (Suomi Synod) was organized at Calumet, Michigan.

1890 William Ashley “Billy” Sunday (18621935), famed left fielder for the Chicago White Sox, gave up his successful career in baseball following his conversion to Christ. He soon became one of the most popular evangelists of his day.

1906 Dawson E. Trotman, founder of the Navigators, was born in Bisbee, Arizona (d. 16 June 1956).

1917 The Georgian Orthodox Church restored its autocephaly abolished by Imperial Russia in 1811.

1927 Heinrich Böhmer, Luther historian, died (b. 1869).

1939 Cardinal Eugenio Pacelli became Pope Pius XII (18761958).

1980 Robert Alexander Kennedy Runcie (1921–2000) was installed as the 102nd Archbishop of Canterbury. He served until 1991.

1991 Marcel Lefebvre, French Catholic prelate who took the lead in opposing changes within the Roman Catholid Church associated with the Second Vatican Council, died (b. 29 November 1905).