January 8th in 1438 was a pivotal day in world history.
Dignitaries with the Orthodox and Roman Catholic churches met at a council, working to reunite after the schism. One of the goals was to forge an alliance that would save Constantinople from the Turks, who sadly continue to be a problem in the 21st century led by creepy Islamist Erdoğan.
A deal was reached creating a temporary union. But it ultimately didn’t work. Five years later, in 1453, Constantinople fell to the Turks, ending the Byzantine Empire. The city was renamed Istanbul. And the two churches once again separated.
Two hundred and four years later on the same date as the beginning of the church council, Galileo — a devout Catholic — died in Italy, in Arcetri near Florence, where the council had moved after an outbreak of plague in the host city of Ferrara. He had been under house arrest, hounded by the thugs of the Inquisition.