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Saturday, April 20, 1996

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Acts 6:1-7
Psalm 33
John 6:16-21

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"Look around among your own number, brothers, for seven men." —Acts 6:3

When a problem arises in your parish, do you have seven new men who are available, "deeply spiritual and prudent" to deal with the problem? (Acts 6:3) How did the early Church get so many men "filled with faith and the Holy Spirit"? (Acts 6:5)

  1. The early Church focused on converting men. They even counted the number of male converts (see Acts 4:4).
  2. Older men made a point to disciple younger men (e.g. Acts 12:25; 16:1ff).
  3. The leaders of the Church taught specifically on male leadership (see 1 Jn 2:14).
  4. They forced men to take leadership in the Church by limiting some ministries to men only (see 1 Tm 2:8ff; 1 Cor 14:34ff).
  5. The members of the Church looked around among their own number (see Acts 6:3) until they found men with leadership gifts, and raised them up to leadership in ministry.

When we focus on converting and discipling men, this doesn't mean that women and children are neglected. On the contrary, only by converting men can we prevent women and children from being neglected. When men are converted, everyone is provided for. Therefore, go for the men. That's what Jesus did when He appointed the twelve apostles. "Rise up, O men of God!"

Prayer:  Father, do whatever it takes to convert many men this Easter season.

Promise:  "They wanted to take Him into the boat, but suddenly it came aground on the shore they had been approaching." —Jn 6:21

Praise:  Joseph seeks out older and wiser Christian men as his teachers.

Reference:  (For related teaching, order our book, Who Am I in Christ?)

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Edward J. Gratsch, October 10, 1995

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, October 13, 1995