All the apostles joined in continuous prayer, together with several women, including Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brothers (Jesus' cousins).   (Acts 1:14)                

Pentecost – Extracted from Acts of the Apostles, Chapter 2:

1 When Pentecost day came round, they had all met together,


2 when suddenly there came from heaven a sound as of a violent wind which filled the entire house in which they were sitting;


3 and there appeared to them tongues as of fire; these separated and came to rest on the head of each of them.


4 They were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak different languages as the Spirit gave them power to express themselves.


5 Now there were devout men living in Jerusalem from every nation under heaven,


6 and at this sound they all assembled, and each one was bewildered to hear these men speaking his own language.


7 They were amazed and astonished. 'Surely,' they said, 'all these men speaking are Galileans?


8 How does it happen that each of us hears them in his own native language?


9 Parthians, Medes and Elamites; people from Mesopotamia, Judaea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia,


10 Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya round Cyrene; residents of Rome-


11 Jews and proselytes alike - Cretans and Arabs, we hear them preaching in our own language about the marvels of God.'


12 Everyone was amazed and perplexed; they asked one another what it all meant.


13 Some, however, laughed it off. 'They have been drinking too much new wine,' they said.



Peter’s address to the crowd


14 Then Peter stood up with the Eleven and addressed them in a loud voice: 'Men of Judaea, and all you who live in Jerusalem, make no mistake about this, but listen carefully to what I say.


15 These men are not drunk, as you imagine; why, it is only the third hour of the day (9 am).


16 On the contrary, this is what the prophet was saying (the Book of Joel, Chapter 3:1-5):


17 In the last days - the Lord declares - I shall pour out my Spirit on all humanity. Your sons and daughters shall prophesy, your young people shall see visions, your old people dream dreams.


18 Even on the slaves, men and women, shall I pour out my Spirit.


19 I will show portents in the sky above and signs on the earth below.


20 The sun will be turned into darkness and the moon into blood before the day of the Lord comes, that great and terrible Day.


21 And all who call on the name of the Lord will be saved.


22 'Men of Israel, listen to what I am going to say: Jesus the Nazarene was a man commended to you by God by the miracles and portents and signs that God worked through him when he was among you, as you know.


23 This man, who was put into your power by the deliberate intention and foreknowledge of God, you took and had crucified and killed by men outside the Law.


24 But God raised him to life, freeing him from the pangs of Hades; for it was impossible for him to be held in its power since,       


25 as David says of him: I kept the Lord before my sight always, for with him at my right hand nothing can shake me.


26 So my heart rejoiced my tongue delighted; my body, too, will rest secure,


27 for you will not abandon me to Hades or allow your holy one to see corruption.


28 You have taught me the way of life, you will fill me with joy in your presence.


29 'Brothers, no one can deny that the patriarch David himself is dead and buried: his tomb is still with us.


30 But since he was a prophet, and knew that God had sworn him an oath to make one of his descendants succeed him on the throne,


31 he spoke with foreknowledge about the resurrection of the Christ: he is the one who was not abandoned to Hades, and whose body did not see corruption.


32 God raised this man Jesus to life, and of that we are all witnesses.


33 Now raised to the heights by God's right hand, he has received from the Father the Holy Spirit, who was promised, and what you see and hear is the outpouring of that Spirit.


34 For David himself never went up to heaven, but yet he said: The Lord declared to my Lord, take your seat at my right hand,


35 till I have made your enemies your footstool.


36 'For this reason the whole House of Israel can be certain that the Lord and Christ whom God has made is this Jesus whom you crucified.'


37 Hearing this, they were cut to the heart and said to Peter and the other apostles, 'What are we to do, brothers?'


38 'You must repent,' Peter answered, 'and every one of you must be baptised in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.


39 The promise that was made is for you and your children, and for all those who are far away, for all those whom the Lord our God is calling to himself.'


The first conversions


40 He spoke to them for a long time using many other arguments, and he urged them, 'Save yourselves from this perverse generation.'


41 They accepted what he said and were baptized. That very day about three thousand were added to their number.


The early Christian community


42 These remained faithful to the teaching of the apostles, to the brotherhood, to the breaking of bread and to the prayers.


43 And everyone was filled with awe; the apostles worked many signs and miracles.


44 And all who shared the faith owned everything in common;


45 they sold their goods and possessions and distributed the proceeds among themselves according to what each one needed.


46 Each day, with one heart, they regularly went to the Temple but met in their houses for the breaking of bread; they shared their food gladly and generously;


47 they praised God and were looked up to by everyone. Day by day the Lord added to their community those destined to be saved.     


The general situation after Pentecost – extracted from Acts of the Apostles, Chapter 5:

12 The apostles worked many signs and miracles among the people. One in heart, they all used to meet in the Portico of Solomon.


13 No one else dared to join them, but the people were loud in their praise


14 and the numbers of men and women who came to believe in the Lord increased steadily. Many signs and wonders were worked among the people at the hands of the apostles


15 so that the sick were even taken out into the streets and laid on beds and sleeping-mats in the hope that at least the shadow of Peter might fall across some of them as he went past.


16 People even came crowding in from the towns round about Jerusalem, bringing with them their sick and those tormented by unclean spirits, and all of them were cured.



Peter cures a paralytic at Lydda – extracted from Acts of the Apostles, Chapter 9


32 It happened that Peter visited one place after another and eventually came to God's holy people living down in Lydda.

33 There he found a man called Aeneas, a paralytic who had been bedridden for eight years.

34 Peter said to him, 'Aeneas, Jesus Christ cures you: get up and make your bed.' Aeneas got up immediately;

35 everybody who lived in Lydda and Sharon saw him, and they were converted to the Lord.



Peter raises a woman to life at Jaffa – extracted from Acts of the Apostles, Chapter 9


36 At Jaffa there was a disciple called Tabitha, or in Greek, Dorcas, who never tired of doing good or giving to those in need.


37 But it happened that at this time she became ill and died, and they washed her and laid her out in an upper room.


38 Lydda is not far from Jaffa, so when the disciples heard that Peter was there, they sent two men to urge him, 'Come to us without delay.'

39 Peter went back with them immediately, and on his arrival they took him to the upper room, where all the widows stood round him in tears, showing him tunics and other clothes Dorcas had made when she was with them.


40 Peter sent everyone out of the room and knelt down and prayed. Then he turned to the dead woman and said, 'Tabitha, stand up.' She opened her eyes, looked at Peter and sat up.

41 Peter helped her to her feet, then he called in the members of the congregation and widows and showed them she was alive.

42 The whole of Jaffa heard about it and many believed in the Lord.

43 Peter stayed on some time in Jaffa, lodging with a leather-tanner called Simon.



Peter visits a Roman Centurion – Extracted from Acts, Chapter 10:

1 One of the centurions of the Italica cohort stationed in Caesarea was called Cornelius.

2 He and the whole of his household were devout and God-fearing, and he gave generously to Jewish causes and prayed constantly to God.

3 One day at about the ninth hour (3 pm) he had a vision in which he distinctly saw the angel of God come into his house and call out to him, 'Cornelius!'

4 He stared at the vision in terror and exclaimed, 'What is it, Lord?' The angel answered, 'Your prayers and charitable gifts have been accepted by God.

5 Now you must send some men to Jaffa and fetch a man called Simon, known as Peter,

6 who is lodging with Simon the tanner whose house is by the sea.'

7 When the angel who said this had gone, Cornelius called two of the slaves and a devout soldier of his staff,

8 told them all that had happened, and sent them off to Jaffa.



Peter’s address on the house of Cornelius


34 Then Peter addressed them, 'I now really understand', he said, 'that God has no favourites,

35 but that anybody of any nationality who fears him and does what is right is acceptable to him.

36 'God sent his word to the people of Israel, and it was to them that the good news of peace was brought by Jesus Christ - he is the Lord of all.


37 You know what happened all over Judaea, how Jesus of Nazareth began in Galilee, after John had been preaching baptism.

38 God had anointed him with the Holy Spirit and with power, and because God was with him, Jesus went about doing good and curing all who had fallen into the power of the devil.


39 Now we are witnesses to everything he did throughout the countryside of Judaea and in Jerusalem itself: and they killed him by hanging him on a tree,

40 yet on the third day God raised him to life and allowed him to be seen,

41 not by the whole people but only by certain witnesses that God had chosen beforehand. Now we are those witnesses - we have eaten and drunk with him after his resurrection from the dead-

42 and he has ordered us to proclaim this to his people and to bear witness that God has appointed him to judge everyone, alive or dead.


43 It is to him that all the prophets bear this witness: that all who believe in Jesus will have their sins forgiven through his name.'


Baptism of the first pagans


44 While Peter was still speaking the Holy Spirit came down on all the listeners.

45 Jewish believers who had accompanied Peter were all astonished that the gift of the Holy Spirit should be poured out on gentiles too,

46 since they could hear them speaking strange languages and proclaiming the greatness of God. Peter himself then said,

47 'Could anyone refuse the water of baptism to these people, now they have received the Holy Spirit just as we have?'

48 He then gave orders for them to be baptised in the name of Jesus Christ. Afterwards they begged him to stay on for some days.



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