33 - Christian tradition says the Jesus Christ, crucified three days earlier, was raised from the dead -- marking this date as the very first Easter. (The next time Easter falls on April 23rd will be in the year 2000.)
1586 - Birth of Martin Rinkart, German clergyman and Latin scholar. Rinkart, a prolific writer, penned the German hymn which begins: "Nun danket alle Gott..." ("Now Thank We All Our God").
1779 - Anglican clergyman and hymnwriter John Newton wrote in a letter: '"What Thou wilt, when Thou wilt, how Thou wilt." I had rather speak these three sentences from my heart in my mother tongue than be master of all the languages in Europe.'
1789 - What is believed to have been the first Catholic newspaper in America, "The Courier de Boston" published its first issue. (The periodical lasted only until October 15th of this same year.)
1968 - In Dallas, the 10.3 million-member Methodist and the 750 thousand-member Evangelical United Brethren churches joined together to form the United Methodist Church. The merger made this the second largest Protestant denomination in the United States (after the Southern Baptists).
© 1987-2009, William D. Blake. Used by permission of the author, from
Almanac of the Christian Church