Jan. 13 in Christian History

Jan 13, 2010 01:11 PM EST

1501 - The world's first hymnbook printed in the vernacular was published in Prague. It contained 89 hymns in the Czech language. (The name of the hymnal is no longer known, since the only surviving copy lacks the title page.)

1635 - Birth of Philip Jacob Spener, founder of German pietism. The name for the Bible studies (called "collegia pietatis") held in his home came to be associated with his followers, who were afterward called Pietists.

1691 - Death of George Fox, 67, English founder of the Society of Friends (Quakers). Fox left the Anglican church at 23 and founded the Quaker movement in 1660 at age 36.

1936 - Baptist clergyman B.B. McKinney, 50, wrote the words and tune to the gospel song, "Wherever He Leads, I'll Go," a few days before the opening of a Sunday School convention in Alabama.

1974 - A Gallup poll on religious worship showed that fewer Protestants and Roman Catholics were attending weekly services than ten years earlier, but that attendance at Jewish worship services had increased over the same period.

© 1987-2010, William D. Blake. Used by permission of the author, from

Almanac of the Christian Church