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

Today in History

August 20

1384 Gerard (Geert) Groote (b. October 1340), Dutch founder of the Brethren of the Common Life, died.

1636 Scottish pastor and theologian Samuel Rutherford (ca. 16001661) began his two-year exile in Aberdeen, Scotland, forbidden by the Scottish crown to preach.

1639 Martin Opitz, poet and hymnist, died (b. 23 December 1597, Bunzlau, on the Bob(e)r River).

1735 The first Lutheran synodical meeting in America convened at Raritan, New Jersey.

1745 Francis Asbury, one of the first Methodist bishops in America, was born in Birmingham, England (d. 31 March 1816).

1884 Rudolf Bultmann, German New Testament scholar, was born (d. 30 July 1976).

1886 Paul Tillich, German philosophical theologian, was born in Starzeddel, Germany (d. 22 October 1965).

1896 Leroy Carl Rincker, president of Concordia College (Milwaukee), was born in Crete, Illinois (d. 28 January 1953).

1900 Ernst Heinrich Rolf, Missouri Synod pioneer in western Canada, died (b. 1837).

1908 Gerhard Friedrich, German Lutheran New Testament scholar, was born at Jodszen, East Prussia.

1912 William Booth, English founder and first general of the Salvation Army, died (b. 10 April 1829, Nottingham, England).

1918 William Keller Frick, president of the English Evangelical Lutheran Synod of the Northwest, died (b. 1 February 1850, Lancaster, Pennsylvania).

1931 Heino O. Kadai was born in Tartu, Estonia (d. 3 June 1999).

1965 The first “Prince of Peace” volunteers arrived in Japan.

1970 The World Alliance of Reformed Churches was formed.

2002 Edward J. Mahnke died in Houston, Texas (b. 11 April 1919). Chaplain Mahnke began his service with Lutheran Missions in Saint Louis in 1943 following his ordination. While serving in that capacity, he was also chaplain at Lutheran Hospital and served on the faculty of Concordia Seminary. In 1960 he left Saint Louis for Minnesota, where he served as Minnesota District Executive Chaplain and Director of Chaplaincy and Pastoral Education at the University of Minnesota. In 1974 the Mahnkes moved to Houston when he became the Director of Chaplaincy and Pastoral Education at MD Anderson Cancer Center. Many Texas District pastors received CPE training under Mahnke's direction. He retired from that position in 1984 and became assistant/visitation pastor at Saint Matthew (Houston).