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

Today in History

July 21

1542 Pope Paul III (14681549) issued the encyclical Licet ab Inuito, which instituted the Congregation of the Roman Inquisition or the Holy Office. It was given the punitive powers of censorship as the central authority for combating heresy. (This is not to be confused with the Spanish Inquisition urged by King Ferdinand and approved by Pope Sixtus IV [14141487] in 1478, which sought to “convince” Spanish Jews of their heresy. Its unusual cruelties and political overtones lingered into the early 19th century.)

1620 Heinrich Held, hymnist, was born at Guhrau, Silesia (d. 16 August 1659).

1773 Pope Clement XIV (17051774) issued the bull Dominus ac Redemptor, which suppressed the Jesuit Order.

1814 The Spanish Inquisition was restored.

1816 Daniel March, American Congregational clergyman and hymnist, was born at Millbury, Massachusetts (d. 2 March 1909).

1827 Johann Jänicke, pastor of Bethlehem Church, Berlin, died (b. 6 July 1748, Berlin). [German Wikipedia article]

1829 Priscilla Jane Owens, American public school teacher and hymn writer, was born in Baltimore, Maryland (d. 5 December 1907, Baltimore, Maryland).

1861 The Canada Synod was organized in Vaughan, Ontario, by the Canada Conference of the Pittsburgh Synod, which had been established in 1853 through the missionary efforts of G. Bassler and C. P. Diehl.

1901 Paul Gustave Eckert was born in Mulhouse, France (d. 19 November 1984, Saint Louis, Missouri). He graduated from Concordia Seminary (Saint Louis) in 1925 and served parishes in Lester Prairie, Minnesota, and Independence, Missouri, before serving as a missionary in Trivandrum and Travancore, South India.

1910 Victor Louis Behnken, son of John W. and Gertrude (Geisler) Behnken, was born (d. 8 March 1971, Palm Springs, California). Mrs. Behnken died six days following Victor’s birth. He graduated from Concordia Seminary (Saint Louis) in 1932 and served parishes in Fort Worth, Texas, and Orange, Laguna Beach and Palm Springs, California. He was president of the Southern California District of the Missouri Synod from 1955 to 1969. In 1969 he was elected vice-president of the synod.

1925 Friedrich Dubpernell, president of the Canada District of the LCMS, died (b. 3 May 1843, Arnweiler, Bavaria). He graduated from Concordia Seminary (Saint Louis) in 1865. His first parish was at Elmira, Ontario, also serving at Floradale, Wellesley, Poole and Salem. He later served Wallace, Logan, Petersburg, Sebringville and Wartburg before spending twenty years as pastor at North East, Pennsylvania. He last parish was at Desboro, Ontario, from 1908 to 1918. During his ministry he was involved in founding parishes in the Ontario towns of Howick, Linwood, Logan, Stratford, Tavistock, Maryborough and Listowill.

1925 Biology teacher John T. Scopes (19001970) was convicted of teaching evolution in his Dayton, Tennessee, classroom. He was fined $100.

1936 Bill McChesney, American missionary to Africa, was born. While serving in the Belgian Congo (modern Zaire) under the Worldwide Evangelization Crusade, he was martyred by rebels on 25 November 1964.

1942 Markus Olaus Böckmann, Norwegian Lutheran pastor and seminary president, died (b. 9 January 1849).

1954 Lutheran mission work was begun at Umalag, Agusan, Philippines.

1960 The Congress for Mission Catechetics was opened in Eichstaedt, Germany, for the purpose of liturgical renewal in the Roman Catholic church; it continued through 28 July.