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

Today in History

December 11

384 Pope Damasus I died.

1475 Giovani de Medici, who as Pope Leo X excommunicated Martin Luther, was born (d. 1 December 1521).

1518 Swiss Reformer Huldrych Zwingli (14841531) became the people's priest at the Old Minster Church in Zurich, a position he held for the remaining thirteen years of his life.

1532 Pietro Accolti, Italian Catholic cardinal who drafted the papal bull against Martin Luther, died (b. 15 March 1455).

1582 Spanish General Fernando Alvarez de Toledo (also known as the Duke of Alva) died (b. 29 October 1507).

1640 The Root and Branch petition with 15,000 signatures was introduced by the Puritans in the Long Parliament in London. It demanded that the English episcopacy be abolished.

1792 Joseph Mohr, German Roman Catholic priest and hymnist who wrote the words to "Silent Night," was born in Salzburg, Austria (d. 4 December 1848).

1803 William Schmidt, president of the Lutheran Seminary in Canton, Ohio, was born in Dunsbach, Wuerttemberg, Germany (d. 3 November 1839).

1838 C. Samuel Kleppisch was born in Baltimore, Maryland (d. 19 September 1884, Indianapolis, Indiana). He graduated from Concordia Seminary (Saint Louis) and served as a pastor in Holstein, Missouri, and Waterloo, Belleville and Troy, Illinois. He was also an instructor at Concordia College (Fort Wayne, Indiana).

1892 William Milligan, Scottish theologian known for his commentary on the Revelation of Saint John, died (b. 15 March 1821).

1895 American fundamentalist and traveling evangelist John R. Rice was born in Cook County, Texas (d. 29 December 1980).

1901 Oliver R. Harms, seventh president of the Missouri Synod, was born in Cole Camp, Missouri (d. 3 June 1980).

1910 Lars Olsen Skrefsrud, missionary to India, died (b. 4 February 1840 near Lillehammer, Norway).

1925 The Quas Primas encyclical was promulgated by Pope Pius XI, introducing the Feast of Christ the King

1932 Horace Newton Allen, Presbyterian medical missionary to China and Korea and a diplomat, died (b. 23 April 1858).

1941 The United Council of Church Women was formed.

1983 Pope John Paul II (19202005) visited a Lutheran church in Rome, becoming the first pope to visit a Protestant church in his own diocese.