July 28 in Christian History

Jul 28, 2011 07:09 AM EDT

1675 - Death of Bulstrode Whitelocke 69, an influential English lawyer during the Commonwealth of Oliver Cromwell. Among Whitelocke's last words: 'There has been one true religion in the world; and that is the work of the Spirit of God in the hearts and souls of men.'

1881 - Birth of J. Gresham Machen, an American Presbyterian theologian who taught atPrinceton and Westminster seminaries. Two of his writings still endure: 'New Testament Greekfor Beginners' (1923) and 'The Virgin Birth of Christ' (1932).

1889 - The first Divine Liturgy (worship service) of the Armenian Church in America wascelebrated in Worcester, MA. It was led by Rev. Hovsep Sarajian, himself the first Armenianclergyman to come to America.

1942 - Death of W.M. Flinders Petrie, 89, English archaeologist. He was regarded by colleague William Foxwell Albright as 'the greatest genius among biblical archaeologists.'

1960 - American Trappist Thomas Merton wrote in a letter: 'I can depend less and lesson my own power and sense of direction... It is so strange to advance backwards and getwhere you are going in a totally unexpected way.'

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

Almanac of the Christian Church