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

Today in History

September 26

1460 Pope Pius II (1405–1464; pope, 1458–1464) assembled European leaders and delivered a three-hour sermon to inspire them to launch a new crusade against the Turks. The speech worked, but another speaker, Cardinal Bessarion (14031472), added a three-hour sermon of his own. After six hours of preaching, the European princes lost all interest in the cause and never mount the called-for crusade.

1518 Martin Luther started for Augsburg to meet with Thomas Cardinal Cajetan (14691534).

1526 Wolfgang, Count Palatine, supporter of the Reformation, was born (d. 11 June 1569).

1530 The Turks under Suleiman the Magnificent (14941566), took part of Austria.

1763 John Byrom, hymnist, died (b. 29 February 1692).

1768 William Knapp, composer, died at Poole (b. 1698, Wareham, Dorsetshire, England).

1774 Jonathan Chapman (“Johnny Appleseed”), pioneer American environmentalist, was born in Leominster, Massachusetts (d. 18 March 1845).

1863 Frederick William Faber, English clergyman and hymnist, died (b. 28 June 1814).

1876 Edward F. Rimbault (b. 13 June 1816), English organist and scholar, died.

1884 Wilhelm Friedrich Besser, Lutheran pastor, theological writer and Breslau Synod leader, died (b. 1816).

1896 William G. Tomer (b. 5 October 1833), American Methodist hymn writer, died.

1897 Giovanni Battista Montini was born near Brescia, Italy (d. 6 August 1978). Ordained in 1920, he was named a cardinal by Pope John XXIII (18811963) in 1958. When John XXIII died in 1963, the conclave elected Montini his successor on 21 June. He chose a name suggesting Christian outreach: Pope Paul VI. His fifteen years as pontiff were instrumental in bringing the Vatican II Council to a confident conclusion in 1965.

1899 Ernst Faber, missionary to China, died at Tsingtao, China (b. 25 April 1839, Coburg, Germany).

1901 The Pacific Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church was organized by ten pastors of the Northwest Synod living west of the Missouri River.

1925 Valparaiso University opened as a Lutheran educational institution.

1932 August G. Brauer, founder and first secretary of the Lutheran Laymen’s League, died in Saint Louis (b. 20 May 1857).

1951 The Orthodox Lutheran Conference was organized at Okabena, Minnesota.

1976 Christ College—now Concordia University (California)—held its opening service.

1977 Paul E. Jacobs died in San Francisco (b. 16 September 1914). Jacobs graduated from Concordia Seminary (Saint Louis) in 1938. He served California parishes in Lancaster, Terra Bella and San Mateo. Jacobs became president of the California and Nevada District in 1959 and led that district for seventeen years. In the early 1970s Jacobs became increasingly critical of the Missouri Synod’s administration. He supported the Saint Louis seminarys former faculty in 1974 and ordained graduates of the Concordia Seminary in Exile that had been formed. In January 1977 Jacobs resigned from the district presidency to protest the synods refusal to change its attitude toward those who disagreed with it. Shortly after his resignation he became bishop of the Pacific Regional Synod of the Association of Evangelical Lutheran Churches (AELC).