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In Acts 6-7, we first learn that the apostles were faced with the pastoral challenge of equitable distribution of food to the widows. Sharon goes on to give a beautiful teaching about God’s tender heart towards widows, as seen both in Old and New Testament stories. To solve this pastoral problem, the Apostles appointed the first deacons, an ordained ministry of the early Church, now revived by Vatican II by the Western Church. Stephen, one of the first deacons, was also the first martyr of the post-resurrection Church. Sharon gives a terrific overview of Stephen’s famous speech to the Sanhedrin. As we find out, the life of Christ is recapitulated in the Church, and the martyrdom of Stephen echoes the martyrdom of Christ: both are executed for the undeserved charge of blasphemy. Stephen’s death and our own sufferings were foretold by Christ: “If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you (John 15:18-19).”
Sharon Doran serves as the teaching director of “Seeking Truth.” An experienced Bible Study teacher, Sharon has a passion for scripture that will motivate and challenge you to immerse yourself in God’s Word and apply His message to your every day life.
“Seeking Truth” is an in depth Catholic Bible Study, commissioned by the Archdiocese of Omaha in response to John Paul II’s call to the New Evangelization as well as Pope Benedict XVI’s exhortation for all Catholics to study scripture. To learn more go to:www.seekingtruth.net