Welcome to Concordia Historical Institute, Department of Archives and History for the Lutheran Church--Missouri Synod.

Today in History

May 20

325 Emperor Constantine convened the first Ecumenical Council in Nicea (now Iznik), Bithynia, to discuss Arianism, a heresy arguing that Jesus is not divine.

1232 Anthony of Padua (11951231) was canonized by Pope Gregory IX.

1277 Pope John XXI (b. 1215) died when the ceiling of his private observatory collapsed on him.

1501 Columba of Rieti (b. 2 February 1467), a Dominican tertiary mystic renowned for her spiritual advice and fantastic miracles, died.

1506 Explorer Christopher Columbus, who saw himself as a missionary as well as an explorer, died impoverished in Spain (b. ca. 1451).

1527 Anabaptist leader Michael Sattler (b. ca. 1490, Staufen, Baden) had his tongue cut out and was tortured and burned as an arch-heretic.

1726 Nicholas Brady, hymnist, died (b. 25 October 1659, Bandon, England).

1754 Columbia University was chartered as King's College in New York City under the Episcopal Church.

1857 August G. Brauer, secretary of the Lutheran Laymen's League and a Missouri Synod lay leader, was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (d. 26 September 1932, Saint Louis).

1873 William R. Featherstone (b. 23 July 1846), hymnist, died.

1883 Silas J. Vail (b. 6 October 1818), a New England businessman and composer, died.

1891 The English Evangelical Lutheran Synod of Missouri and Other States was organized.

1893 The organizational meeting of the Walther League was held in Buffalo, New York (continuing through May 23). The league was the youth organization of the Synodical Conference, named in honor of C. F. W. Walther, who had advocated organized work among the confirmed youth.

1915 Wilhelm Streissguth, president of the Wisconsin Synod, died (b. 10 April 1827, Lahr, grand duchy of Baden, Germany).

1920 Henry L. Gilmour (b. 19 January 1836), Irish-born American dentist and composer of Gospel songs, died.

1948 Redeemer Lutheran Church, Balboa, Canal Zone, was dedicated.

1950 The Polish parliament (Sejm) under Communist control passed a law that expropriated all religious property.

1950 Grant C. Tullar (b. 5 August 1869), New England song evangelist, died.

1960 Six months before John F. Kennedy, a Roman Catholic, was elected president of the United States, the Southern Baptist Convention condemned the election of Roman Catholics to public office.

1979 Christ College (Irvine, California) was dedicated. The school is now known as Concordia University (California).