May 11 in Christian History

May 11, 2012 06:48 AM EDT

1621 - Death of Johann Arndt, 65, German Lutheran theologian. Called the precursor of Pietism, Arndt was the greatest name in the history of German mysticism after Thomas a Kempis.

1682 - The General Court of Massachusetts repealed two laws which had been passed two years earlier: one forbade the keeping of Christmas, and the second mandated capital punishment for Quakers who returned to the colony after being banished.

1824 - St. Regis Seminary was opened in Florissant, Missouri. It was the first Roman Catholic institution established in America for the higher education of American Indians.

1825 - The American Tract Society, the first national tract league in America, was formed in NY City by the merger of 50 smaller societies.

1888 - The Woman's Missionary Union, Auxiliary to the Southern Baptist Convention, had its inception in Richmond, Virginia, when delegates from 15 states met to form a general women's organization within the denomination.

© 1987-2012, William D. Blake. Used by permission of the author, from

Almanac of the Christian Church