The historian has difficulty detecting the personal influence exercised in the post-Easter community by ‘the apostles’, at least as this group is identified in Christian tradition. The only individuals from this group whose historical role in the church's missionary activity can be clearly discerned are Peter and Paul. Nevertheless, for the church of the second and succeeding centuries, the New Testament is a collection of ‘apostolic writings’: the twenty-seven books are attributed either to Paul, or to one of the twelve, or to a disciple of one of ‘the apostles’ – to Paul's disciple, Luke (Col. 4. 14), or to Peter's disciple, Mark (1 Pet. 5. 13). Moreover, as early as the year 96, Clement of Rome asserts that the apostles appointed their first converts to be bishops and deacons, with the condition that if these should die, other approved men should succeed to their ministry.