Christianity is a faith with a long and detailed history, with numerous events of lasting significance occurring throughout the ages.
Each week brings the anniversaries of great milestones, horrid tragedies, amazing triumphs, telling tribulations, inspirational progress, and everything in between.
Here are just a few things that happened this week, Feb. 4-10, in church history. They include the launching of a high-profile fundamentalist Christian radio station, the mass crucifixion of Christians in Japan, and the release of a controversial Bible translation.
Family Radio Launched - February 4, 1959
This week marks the anniversary of the first broadcast of Family Radio, a nondenominational fundamentalist Protestant nonprofit that became a national network of stations.
Founded the year before by Harold Camping, Richard Palmquist and Lloyd Linquist, its first program was broadcasted on FM radio station KEAR in San Francisco, California.
In the 1990s and early 2000s, Family Radio President Camping garnered controversy for claiming that all local congregations had gone apostate and that the Rapture would occur on May 21, 2011.
Following Camping's death in 2013, the station saw an uptick in donations as well as new partnerships with groups like Answers in Genesis and Ligonier Ministries.
Mass Crucifixion of Christians in Nagasaki, Japan - February 5, 1597
This week marks the anniversary of the martyrdom of 26 Christians at the Japanese city of Nagasaki under the rule of Toyotomi Hideyoshi, chief minister to the emperor.
As Japan became unified under one government, the nation became increasingly hostile to foreigners, including Catholic priests and missionaries.
The 26 people crucified at Nagasaki included 6 foreign-born missionaries and 20 Japanese Christians. It represented only the beginning of a national wave of violent persecution.
In 1862, the 26 martyrs were canonized by the Roman Catholic Church and in the twentieth century, a monument was erected at the site of the mass crucifixion in their honor.
Today's New International Version Published - February 7, 2005
This week marks the anniversary of when the Today's New International Version of the Bible was published, initially in paperback.
Its New Testament having been released in 2002, the TNIV was a controversial version due to its pervasive editing to make numerous passages of the NIV Bible gender neutral.
"Endorsed by scholars and pastors across the country, the TNIV is the new translation for today's generation," stated the TNIV's Amazon description.
"It combines uncompromising reliability, the clarity of today's language, and the heritage of the most trusted translation, the NIV."
Many critics, including the evangelical apologetics website GotQuestions.org, argued that its increased gender neutral renderings of assorted passages were "not necessary" and "sometimes misleading."
"While we do not question the motives of the TNIV translation committee, we have serious reservations about some of their decisions," argued the site.
All the headlines the TNIV received for its translation decisions did not make the translation endure, as its publisher Zondervan announced its discontinuation in Sept. 2009.