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4. Correspondence

4.20 Matthew C. Civis Sr. (2)

 

4.20 Correspondence with Matthew C. Civis Sr. (2)

 

3. Mail (from Matthew C. Civis Sr.)

Thank you, Frank for your nice letter, I have not updated my site is some time, I have a new text-to-speech software and I am working on getting the book of Enoch and Sirach into a mp3 file for those of us who have trouble reading, or for those that want to just listen.

It is taking a lot of work because I don't want it to sound like a PC reading it and I am removing the Old English so that I can understand it.

I have not read Jakob Lorber’s “Great Gospel of John and not sure if I have a copy of it, Can you tell me where to find it.

As for Matt and Matthew, I am Matthew C. Civs Sr. the author of the website www.we-have-a-voice.com Matt is my 23 year old son at Portland Bible School who has many writings of has own on the web, he is still young and as much to learn but is far past where I was at his age. I also have two other children Andrew and Ashley and I hope to see them writing things as well. All of them will out do their dads writings I can see it in them now.

I am sending you a copy of my youngest school paper.

Thanks,

Matthew

www.we-have-a-voice.com



Ashley Civis
Mrs. Deyoung
English II B
27 April 2009

Alone With No Help

Acknowledging all of the people eating inside of the restaurant I started to think about the last time I ate dinner with a smile on my face. I can hardly remember what it is like to be a normal human being. I will probably never go back to the way I was before. “What am I thinking at a time like this,” I mumble to myself. “I should be more worried of what I’m going to eat tonight and the next night.” I started limping back down the sidewalk holding tight to a 5-dollar bill. If one were to ever to become homeless then they would find out that even if they acted like a normal friendly human, people would still look at them with looks of disgust. Just because of the dirt on their face and the clothing full of holes. When I was little I always heard people complaining about how the druggie bums are messing up the road. Isn’t it the other way around? It’s not the homeless dirtying the streets it’s the street dirtying us. Not all of us were this way before, we used to have different lives.

I just turned 27 when I got a job at a small restaurant on the corner in New Orleans. It was the best anyone could ask for.

“Good Morning Chris!” Shouts my boss as I walk though the door.

“Good morning” I replied with my head down.

“Oh. Come on boy, wake up!” he shouts.

That was how he was every morning, so loud and cheerful. Everyone around here called him joyful Joe. He was the guy to go to if a person was having a bad day. His restaurant was the place people could hide from the world. Until that one morning in May, when I walked in and there was no welcome. By the look on his face everyone could tell there was never going to be one again. When Joe finally looked up at us I got chills down my back.

“Hey guys,” he said calmly. “I have something to tell you.”

We just stared and waited to hear what was coming next. We could see that what ever he had to tell us it wasn’t good.

“This place has been shut down” he stuttered “it seem we went bankrupt.” As he said the last words my head started to spin. How could this be, bankrupt? I didn’t know what to say, what to do. I just stood there like a dummy. What would I do now for money? I needed this job to pay for food and my rent. I was in so much shock I couldn’t move.

“Chris? Christopher,” asked Joe. “Come on boy, don’t put on such a face. You look worse than me” He lightly smiled.

“Sorry, I know how much this place means to you.” I shrugged

“Oh its okay kiddo, I’ll make it through it” he said as he got up. “Why don’t you all head home. We can talk more tomorrow,” he said as he slowly walked into the kitchen.

We all know that this was hard on him and that he was acting like that for us. Next day we met in the afternoon to help Joe get his stuff together. Even though we knew this was the last time to work in this building we still enjoyed ourselves. We still tried to keep in touch but once we all found different friends and jobs things changed. Some of my coworkers even want back home to their families and old friends. Unlike them I didn’t have support from back home, I was on my own. New Orleans might have been a big city but it was still hard to find a job after hurricane Katrina. It didn’t take long for my landlord to start coming to my door asking for money I didn’t have. I just sat down to read the newspaper, when I heard a knock on the door. I slowly opened it hoping that it wasn’t the landlord.

“Good afternoon Christopher,” she said. “If you can call it that.”

“Hello Miss Alice.” I mumbled without looking up at her.

“I’m sorry Christopher but you can’t stay her any longer,” She said

“But miss Alice, just give me a little time.” I interrupted

“No Chris, I have let you stay too long already. Its time to leave.” She yelled as she walked away, back to her car. I would have to thank her for letting me stay there as long as I did. I glance down to the newspaper on the table. There in nice big letters “CAUSE OF HOMELESS.” I pick it up hoping that maybe it was going to tell me that there was hope but it just made me more disappointed. “The Primary causes for most homelessness is a simple inability to pay for housing, caused by some combination of low income and high housing costs”(Turner). Well now they can add me to the list of homeless that couldn't pay for housing. By the next day I packed everything I could carry and started walking down the street with no place to go. I had no clue where I was going or what I was going to do, all I knew that it was going to be the hardest times of my life. I headed for under the highway because I had heard that’s where a lot of homeless slept at night (Yankoski). It also helped that I was in a warmer climate. Many in my position could possibly freez to death at night. (Yankoski)

It was hard the first year on the street, well it still pretty hard. I had to learn the rules of the street fast, it was like being in school again. Matt was my teacher, he told me everything I needed to know to live on the streets.

“Chris my boy let my tell the rule of the day,” He exclaimed. “Don't sleep in someone else's spot and try to stay away from the rats” (Yankoski).

“ Oh darn Matt, I really wanted to hang out with rats behind that old building today.” I said with a giant smile.

“You’re the coolest C-dog.” Said matt

I learned to wake up early in the morning before someone would come by and kick me awake (Yankoski). I learned where I could find the best food or how to beg. I found out that the people who have nothing would hand out more then the people who had something. I made a lot friends at the soup kitchen or in the shelter than I ever had back when I was in school. I learned that when all else failed a rescue mission was the place to get food (Yankoski). There I met where the most beautiful people I have ever met in my whole life. Though there was a lot of other homeless people drinking or doing drugs, but not all were like that. Not even the people doing drugs or drinking were that bad just a little different. Twenty two percent of the homeless are in urban areas 38 percent are families with children (CMHS Programs). The most dangerous were the men and women who have been out on the streets their whole life and was sick of it. They would do anything for any type of money. Those were the types a person made sure to stay out of their part of town. If I asked around I was sure to find out where not to go and where I could. I know it was dangerous to be alone but I was used to it, mostly being alone. If I went alone I wouldn’t have to share as much and people might give me more. I knew it was selfish but anyone it this situation would have done the same. Now days there are a lot of young people that are homeless. There have always been the mentally ill people who have trouble in society and have nowhere to go (CMHS Programs).

That was 3 years ago. Now the streets are like my own backyard. I know every corner, every shop and all the best places to sleep. I could figure out how the people are going to act. A new situation was around the corner. I was walking down the alley, it was the perfect day out, but that day turned out to be the most painful day of my life.

“What do your think you doing here?” I hear from behind me. I turn around not thinking about what was waiting for me there. I felt this great pain in my Stomach as I hit the ground. My eyes went black, there was this weird taste in my mouth. I layed there on ground for a good 5 seconds until I was able to move again.

“Get up bum,” I hear a man yell. “Come on get up!”

I get to my feet and stared at the two men in front of me. I couldn’t figure out what was going on? What did these people want? I gazed up and down their clothing, these men weren't like me. They weren’t two homeless men they were two regular men, probably from these apartments I was standing by.

“Did you hear me,”One on the left yelled, “Are you listening? We told you to get lost!”

“Huh? What,” I ask.

“We told you to get lost,” he said again but this time he stepped closer.

“I don’t think I really understand,” I said well stepping back. “Is there something wrong?”

“Yes there is, we don’t want any bums around,” the man on right yelled. You see the homeless are seen as a nuisance. Many are addicted to drugs and unclean. (Arnott)

What? That was the reason they punched me in the stomach. That was all because I was a homeless bum and was different from them. This is what the people around here are doing now of days, beating up bums with no real reason at all. Just think about it made my stomach hurt even more but that’s what made me do something so stupid that I should be glad I’m not dead. I raised my left hand and slammed it right into the guy on the right. When I watched him stumble to stay up, I realized it. These two men were much stronger than me and there were two of them, I could never beat them. I tried to run but my legs just didn’t seem to move.

“You’re going to pay for that kid,” he yelled as he ran towards me.

I lifted my hands to get ready for anything he was going to do but I was not ready for what happened next. Smack! It wasn’t the guy running at me but the guy next to me. It felt like my whole head was spinning around. I couldn’t tell where I was at first. It felt like the whole world was just going to disappear. When I finally woke up it was already dark, the moon was just sitting there watching me lay there. I stumbled to get up, my head seemed to weigh a ton. I walked through the city with my head bleeding but no one really cared. I mean who would, I’m just a homeless person with no money for food or for band-aids. I went to the spot I mostly use for sleep. Back alleys of the city where if you can be unseen so it is safer. I slept until morning. I heard some street people actually liked being sick or hurt. If it was bad enough you might go to the hospital. It would feel like a hotel for us (Turner). Mostly though if you got sick on the street or got to cold death would be the only way out (Turner). In the morning I limped my way down the sidewalk asking for money. I mostly just got pity looks and some change. I sat down on the sidewalk. The fight was still having a toll on me. Sitting there for a hour watching the pedestrians talking to each other and not ever bothering to help me out.

“How are doing my friend?” asked a man standing above me with his hand out.

“I’m doing good my friend.” I stuttered back and shook his hand. I look down at my hand, I couldn’t believe it, This guy wasn’t here just to ask me how I was but to help. I look up at him. “May God bless your children!” I said with light smile.

“Thank you.” The man said as he walked away back the way he came.

I started to chuckle little, a man goes out of his way to help me and then he thanks me! Many People don’t like to give us cash because they think we will buy drugs or alcohol. However it is true that many do have a substance abuse problem but not all. (Turner) I think this was the first time I have ever run into a guy like him. I notice a lady on my left pointing at me and the guy walking away. She was looking at the man with disgust as she told her husband of how that man just shook my hand. That was the first time and last time I saw that man. Because of him I’m able to buy some kind of food today but to do that I have to stop thinking of the past and move on. I start limping to the nearest MacDonald’s. Maybe this is a sign that there is still some hope. If only more people could follow his example then maybe people like me would have to suffer as much.

Matthew 25:40 “verily I say unto you, in as much as ye have done it unto one of the least of my brethren ye have done it unto me”. King James Version. Bible

 

4. Mail (to Matthew C. Civis Sr.)

Hi Matthew,

Thanks for your mail.

I read the copy of your youngest son’s school paper “Alone With No Help” of 27 April 2009, that you attached to your mail. The next few days my thoughts kept returning to this story and when I started to write this here, I read it again. Please give my regards to Ashley. It seems to me that Chris is a real person. What is the relationship between Ashley and Chris, and between Chris and Matt?

I always liked the book of Sirach and it was a pity that they took it out of the Bible. So for you to make it available to more people is very nice. The King James English is not always easy to understand. I read Sirach in The Jerusalem Bible. I also have a Good News Bible that contains the Apocrypha and also one that is called The New English Bible.

My most favourite verse in Sirach, in the Jerusalem Bible, is: Leisure is what gives the scribe the opportunity to acquire wisdom; a man with few business affairs grows wise.

The quotation from Jakob Lorber’s “Great Gospel of John” was my translation of it from the original German text. I have not read any English translation. English translations are available in book form and also on the web. I tried the following URLs; they seem to work but I did not read them.

http://www.jakoblorberbooks.com/e-books/The-Great-Gospel-of-John/

http://www.scribd.com/doc/3775253/The-Great-Gospel-of-John-1st-volume-by-Jakob-Lorber

http://www.scribd.com/doc/16341449/Jakob-Lorber-Gospel-of-John-Book-1

Please also give my regards to Matt. I read some on his writings and enjoyed it.

All the best

Frank

Frank L. Preuss

 

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