July 1, 1899: Three traveling businessmen meet in a YMCA building and decide to form an organization to distribute Bibles.
The Christian Commercial Men’s Association of America, later renamed The Gideons International, placed their first Bibles in a hotel nine years later.
July 4, 2003: Financial teacher Larry Burkett, co-founder of Crown Financial Ministries, dies of heart failure at age 64. He was influential in helping American Christians understand the financial implications of Christian discipleship.
July 5, 1865: William Booth begins The Christian Mission to work among London’s poor and unchurched. Later, he changed the mission’s name to The Salvation Army.
July 9, 1228: Stephen Langton, greatest of the medieval archbishops of Canterbury, dies. He had formulated the original division of the Bible into chapters in the late 1100s.
July 11, 1955: Congress puts “In God We Trust” on all U.S. currency.
July 23, 1742:Susannah Wesley (left), mother of John and Charles, dies. Born the 25th child in a clergyman’s family, she became one of the most notable mothers in church history.
July 24, 1874: Oswald Chambers, author of the devotional book, My Utmost for His Highest (published posthumously in 1927), is born in Aberdeen, Scotland.
July 26, 1833: Britain’s House of Commons bans slavery. “Thank God I have lived to witness [this] day!” said William Wilberforce, a British statesman who had spent most of his life crusading against slavery. Wilberforce dies three days later.
July 29, 1794: In a converted blacksmith’s shop in Philadelphia, Methodist preacher — and former slave — Richard Allen assembles a group of black Christians who had encountered racial discrimination in the local Methodist Episcopal Church.
They eventually form what eventually became the African Methodist Episcopal Church (AME), now known throughout the world. (The graphic at right shows Allen in the center, surrounded by bishops of the AME Church.)
Adapted with permission from ChristianHistory.net.
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