1. About this time, when the number of disciples was increasing, the Hellenists made a complaint against the Hebrews: in the daily distribution their own widows were being overlooked.

2. So the Twelve called a full meeting of the disciples and addressed them, 'It would not be right for us to neglect the word of God so as to give out food;

3. you, brothers, must select from among yourselves seven men of good reputation, filled with the Spirit and with wisdom, to whom we can hand over this duty.

4. We ourselves will continue to devote ourselves to prayer and to the service of the word.'

5. The whole assembly approved of this proposal and elected Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Spirit, together with Philip, Prochorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, and Nicolaus of Antioch, a convert to Judaism.

6. They presented these to the apostles, and after prayer they laid their hands on them.

7. The word of the Lord continued to spread: the number of disciples in Jerusalem was greatly increased, and a large group of priests made their submission to the faith.

8. Stephen was filled with grace and power and began to work miracles and great signs among the people.

9. Then certain people came forward to debate with Stephen, some from Cyrene and Alexandria who were members of the synagogue called the Synagogue of Freedmen, and others from Cilicia and Asia.

10. They found they could not stand up against him because of his wisdom, and the Spirit that prompted what he said.

11. So they procured some men to say, 'We heard him using blasphemous language against Moses and against God.'

12. Having turned the people against him as well as the elders and scribes, they took Stephen by surprise, and arrested him and brought him before the Sanhedrin.

13. There they put up false witnesses to say, 'This man is always making speeches against this Holy Place and the Law.

14. We have heard him say that Jesus, this Nazarene, is going to destroy this Place and alter the traditions that Moses handed down to us.'

15. The members of the Sanhedrin all looked intently at Stephen, and his face appeared to them like the face of an angel.

Livros sugeridos

“Reze, reze! Quem muito reza se salva e salva os outros. E qual oração pode ser mais bela e mais aceita a Nossa Senhora do que o Rosario?” São Padre Pio de Pietrelcina


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