Jan. 27 in Christian History

Jan 27, 2013 08:15 AM EST

1343 Clement VI's bull "Unigenitus" officially ratified the belief that Indulgences owed their potency to the Pope's dispensation of the accumulated merit of the Church. (In 1518 Cardinal Thomas Cajetan accused German reformer Martin Luther, 32, of challenging the validity of this Catholic doctrine.)

1774 Pioneer American Methodist bishop Francis Asbury wrote in his journal: 'If my labours should be in vain for the people, the Lord gives me a gracious reward in my own soul.'

1839 Birth of John Julian, famed English authority on sacred music. His undoubted masterwork is the monumental "Dictionary of Hymnology" which he published in 1892 (later revised, updated and reissued in 1957).

1842 Scottish clergyman Robert Murray McCheyne wrote in a letter: 'Call upon the name of the Lord. Your time may be short... The longest lifetime is short enough. It is all that is given you to be converted in. They are the happiest who are brought soonest to the bosom of Jesus."

1972 In Columbia, the white and black United Methodist conferences of South Carolina -- separated since the Civil War - voted in their respective meetings to adopt a plan of union.

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