March 13 in Christian History

Mar 13, 2009 01:28 PM EDT

1687 - Father Eusebio Kino, 42, an Italian-born Jesuit in the service of Spain, began missionary labors in the American Southwest. In all, Kino established 25 Indian missions in the area now divided between northern Mexico and Arizona.

1804 - Birth of James W. Alexander, American Presbyterian clergyman and hymn writer. It was Alexander who, in 1830, rendered the English text of Paul Gerhardt's immortal German hymn, "O Sacred Head, Now Wounded."

1868 - Birth of Charles E. Cowman, American missionary pioneer. In 1901 he sailed to Japan with his wife Lettie (who later authored "Streams in the Desert"), where in 1910 they founded the Oriental Missionary Society.

1904 - "The Christ of the Andes", a bronze statue of Christ located on the Argentina-Chile border, was formally dedicated.

1925 - Tennessee Governor Austin Peay signed legislation prohibiting the teaching of evolution within the state's public school system. (A celebrated violation of this law led to the famous July Scopes Monkey Trial.)

© 1987-2009, William D. Blake. Used by permission of the author, from

Almanac of the Christian Church