Jan. 17 in Christian History

Jan 17, 2011 12:48 PM EST

395 - With the death of Emperor Theodosius I (the Great), this became the last day the (Christian) Roman Empire was controlled by a single leader. In his wisdom, Theodosius had divided the empire into western and eastern portions.

1377 - The Papal See was moved back to Rome by Gregory XI. Located in France for 72 years, it had been moved to Avignon by French pope Clement V in 1305, originally to escape the political turmoil rampant within Italy at the time.

1562 - The Edict of St. Germain officially recognized French Protestantism.

1745 - Colonial missionary to the American Indians David Brainerd wrote in his journal: 'Oh, how comfortable and sweet it is, to feel the assistance of divine grace in the performance of the duties which God has enjoined on us!'

1963 - The Baptist World Mission was incorporated in Chicago. This independent organization of Baptist tradition is engaged primarily in evangelism, church planting and education in 17 overseas countries.

© 1987-2011, William D. Blake. Used by permission of the author, from

Almanac of the Christian Church