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Sunday, February 24, 2019

For All The Jural Assemblies - 38 The American Government Structure


By Anna Von Reitz

You can now see the outlines of the actual American Government:
The people -- all living, breathing beings operate as Natural Persons, and operate the soil jurisdiction, which is the national jurisdiction of their republican states which are members of The United States, an unincorporated Union.

The People -- all Lawful Persons acting in the international land jurisdiction owed to the republican states operating as States that are members of The United States of America, an unincorporated Federation of States.

The United States: Combined National Soil Jurisdiction Union of State Republics

Union Formed: July 1, 1776
Declared: July 4, 1776 via The Unanimous Declaration of Independence
Nature: lawful, unincorporated, Union of State Republics
Jurisdiction: soil, top six inches of land, national, domestic
Units: Unincorporated Counties
Government: Lawful Republican Assemblies
Language: English

Members:
The Wisconsin Republic (soil) / The Republic of Wisconsin (surface water)
The Texas Republic (soil) / The Republic of Texas (surface water)
…. et alia

Citizenry: living people conducting business as Natural Persons

The United States of America - Combined International Land and Sea Jurisdiction - Federation of States

Federation Formed: September 9, 1776
Declared by: Act of The Continental Congress
Nature: Lawful, Unincorporated Federation
Jurisdiction: Land (below six inches deep) and Sea, International
Units: Unincorporated States
Government: Lawful State Assemblies
Language: English

Members:
Ohio (land) / Ohio State (sea)
Wisconsin (land) / Wisconsin State (sea)
….Et Alia....

Citizenry: Lawful Persons

****Note that some powers of the States in the international Jurisdiction of the Sea were contracted away via Delegation of Powers under the Constitutions, but not all such powers. See Amendment X.****

And now comes the Big Surprise: We, the People, are crossing the Bar:

States of America, Combined Global Commercial and Municipal Jurisdiction of the Air, Confederation of States

Confederation Formed: March 1,1781
Declared by: Adoption of The Articles of Confederation
Nature: Legal, Incorporated
Jurisdiction: Global, Municipal, Commercial, Territorial
Units: Incorporated and Sovereign - Patented States of States
Government: Federal, Territorial, Municipal
Language: English

Members:
The State of Georgia / The Georgia State
The State of Wisconsin / The Wisconsin State
….Et Alia....

Citizenry: Legal Persons

****Notice that the States of America Confederation originally conducted the business of all three branches of the future Federal Government. Notice that although the actual members of this Confederation were States of States, they were nonetheless all referred to as "Confederate States" beginning in 1781. Notice that the citizenry of these States of States is all composed of Legal Persons, not Lawful Persons.****

****Notice that the official language of all three is English.****

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For All The Jural Assemblies - 37 The Interface


By Anna Von Reitz

So we have studied the issue and meaning of "Lawful Persons" and two basic jurisdictions --- soil (national) and land (international).

We have seen that we have two kinds of states: republican states of the soil and international States of the land, both of which are unincorporated and geographically defined.

We have also observed that these states are members of two unincorporated Unions of states. 

The republican states are members of The United States.

The land States are members of The United States of America.

Both of these states are populated by people.

When the people of the soil jurisdiction republican states operate their national jurisdiction as citizens of, for example, The Wisconsin Republic, they operate as Natural Persons.

When the people of the republican states enter the international land jurisdiction of their State of the Union,  they act as the People of their State, and as Lawful Persons.

Lawful Persons differ from Legal Persons. 

Lawful Persons are connected to specific actual, factual, geographic and physical reality.

Legal Persons are fictional legal constructs devoid of such connection to physical fact.

There is only one interface between Lawful Persons and Legal Persons and that interface occurs in international jurisdiction. 

The international land jurisdiction is populated by Lawful Persons.
The international sea jurisdiction is inhabited by Legal Persons.

What happens when a Lawful Person crosses this invisible boundary and becomes a Legal Person is known as an "unlawful conversion". 

What happens when a Legal Person crosses this same boundary in the opposite direction and becomes recognizable as a Lawful Person is known as a "lawful conversion". 

When a Lawful Person crosses into the international jurisdiction of the sea and attacks Legal Persons already there it is known as a "transgression".

And when the opposite occurs and a Legal Person crosses into the international jurisdiction of the land and attacks a Lawful Person it is known as a "trespass". 

Both can be considered errors worthy of forgiveness, or as crimes, depending on the acts and/or the expressed intention of the parties.

When Lawful Persons transgress again Legal Persons it most often results in obstruction of the business or other activities of the Legal Persons.

When Legal Persons trespass against Lawful Persons it most often results in in inland piracy, conscription, kidnapping, press-ganging or other crimes.

For the purposes of the State Jural Assemblies this interface is of special importance and deserves to be thoroughly understood. There is a barrier, or "bar" involved that has to be properly manipulated and it is analogous to the veil between life and death.

This is the so-called "corporate veil".

Lawful Persons are connected to life and physical actuality, but Legal Persons are not, so that Lawful Persons are metaphorically "alive" and Legal Persons are "dead".

Our lawful State Governments, represented by both The United States and The United States of America, have treaties with the British Monarch and the separate government of Westminster, as well as commercial service and trust agreements set forth in the respective Territorial and Municipal Constitutions, that govern how Americans are supposed to be treated when we cross back and forth over this invisible barrier, this interface between "Lawful" and "Legal". 

Specifically, the British Monarch and the Papal Temple Government of Westminster are to act as the Trustees of our Lawful Persons when we venture over the Bar. They are obligated to protect our National Trust, which includes our Natural and Unalienable Rights and to "aid and assist" us on the High Seas and Navigable Inland Waterways (the international Jurisdiction of the Sea) and the Global Jurisdiction of the Air (commerce) "in perpetuity".

They have gotten around these obligations and the limitations of the Constitutions by pretending that we have all knowingly contracted with them to work for them and their commercial corporations as unpaid volunteers-- that is, under conditions of peonage and enslavement.

This shameful breach of trust and legal chicanery based on unconscionable contracts with babies and undisclosed unilateral contracting processes taking place on the land and soil of our country is a part of what we now need to address. 

They have grossly trespassed against us and arbitrarily tried to redefine the living people and Lawful Persons of this country as chattel properties belonging to them and their commercial corporations and they have gotten away with this fraud for many years undetected. 

Now comes the day of reckoning for six generations of venal fraud, but in order to make it stick, we must mind our "p's" and "q's" and maintain our lawful standing as American State Citizens --- not "US Citizens".  We must take up our duties and run our sovereign States of the Union and reconstruct our Federal States of States and put an end to the crass and despicable false claims in commerce that have been made against us.

For now, know that when we, Lawful Persons, cross the interface and enter the international jurisdiction of the sea or the global jurisdiction of commerce and therefore function as Legal Persons on a temporary basis, we are owed safe conduct. 

For the time that we are conducting business in the international Jurisdiction of the Sea we are considered to be "Foreign Situs Trusts" under the protection of the British Monarchs-- Legal Persons operating under the same Proper Name that we use as Lawful Persons, owed all the guarantees and protections of the Territorial Constitution.  

There is no visible difference between "Mary Jane Ellis" standing on the land and "Mary Jane Ellis" at sea.   This is what FDR used to attempt to "vacate" our entire country and promote a national identity theft scheme of staggering proportions. 

For the time that we are conducting business in the global realm of commerce -- that is, in the Jurisdiction of the Air, we are considered to be "friends" of the Government of Westminster under the protection of the Pope. 

Instead, we have been deliberately and fraudulently misidentified as "US citizens" and "US citizens" have never had any constitutional guarantees and have never had any treaty protections, either. 

This identity theft unlawfully converting our Lawful Persons (American State Nationals and American State Citizens) into Legal Persons - British Territorial 
United States Citizens and Municipal Citizens of the United States under
false pretenses, has led to six generations-worth of abuse of our States and our People and has allowed the British Monarchs and the Popes to prey upon us and cynically make false claims in commerce against our "Persons" and our assets.

It was all done "accidentally-on-purpose" via manipulation of the Bar -- the interface between Lawful Persons and Legal Persons and their purposeful misidentification one for the other, so as to avoid treaty and contractual obligations.

As American State Citizens you must thoroughly grasp the importance of your Lawful Person -- your Trade Name -- and the necessity of maintaining your Trade Name's permanent domicile on the land and soil of your State. 

As members of the State Jural Assembly and recognizably, one of the People of your State, you are the ones enabled to enforce the guarantees of the Constitutions and also the ones responsible for upholding and enforcing the Public Law and running the People's Courts we are all owed.  It is a noble and necessary endeavor. 

It is also necessary to notice that your courts for Natural Persons (County Courts) and Lawful Persons (State Courts) are not the same as the Nisi Prius For-Hire Courts that are presently sitting in your courthouses and doing business under the guise of "State of State" commercial contractors. 

The best way to understand this situation is to think of it as a baseball club from another town using your public ball field. 

These "State of State" courts don't belong to you, are not operating in your jurisdiction, and are foreign in all respects.  They literally have nothing to do with you and need to be avoided and left alone to conduct their business with their citizenry. 

At all times, you must maintain your awareness of the interface between "Lawful" and "Legal" and know who you are with respect to this interface. You are American State Citizens and Lawful Persons, one of the People of your State of the Union owed every jot of every treaty and every service contract. 
You own the land and soil of this country and you are home again. 

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Please Note:


From Anna Von Reitz

PaperUpNow.com is a for-hire service.

We are in the process of setting up a pro bono service for those who don't have access to computers or for whatever reason need extra help understanding the paperwork needed to reclaim their birthright political status. 
Please bear in mind that this new service that will be coming online soon does require you to pay for the actual filing fees that the County Recorder's Office charges, so it is not totally "free", either. 
Also bear in mind that those who are providing this new Soon-To-Be-Announced help service are doing so out of the goodness of their hearts as volunteers and if you can afford a donation toward their time, paper, and ink it will be appreciated.

Close, But No Banana


By Anna Von Reitz

Of course, I am disappointed.  Of course, I am heartsick.  The Michigan General Jural Assembly had a lot of things going for it, but certain fundamental things they got wrong--- and they would not correct. 

Close, but no banana.

One of the fundamentals they got wrong is the fact that none of the actual States accept Dual Citizenship of any kind.

If you want to operate an actual State Government --- which is what we desperately need to do --- you can't sit on the fence.  You have to declare yourself an American with no ties to any other government, and that includes the Territorial United States and the Municipal United States governments.

Please note that "The United States" is a separate soil jurisdiction Union of republican states that is unincorporated and has nothing to do with any commercial corporation, and that is the soil jurisdiction government we are heir to. 

Also note that "The United States of America" is a separate land jurisdiction Union of States that is unincorporated and has nothing to do with any commercial corporation, and that is the international jurisdiction government we are heir to.

The Government "of the people, by the people, and for the people" is vested in the living people and not in any commercial corporation of any kind. That includes all the Federal Corporations.  

That is to say, our government is vested in the unincorporated state/States, not any foreign States of States run as commercial corporations for private profit.

There are many commercial corporations trying to assume contracts with us and trying to get people to sign private contracts with them to receive their services.  They operate under deceitfully similar names--- to encourage you to assume that their organizations as somehow "the same as" the actual government you are owed. 

This has been going on since 1868 when a Scottish corporation in the business of providing governmental services started calling itself "The United States of America, Inc." and millions of Americans were hoodwinked by this gross breach of trust and infringement.

Today, we have organizations that are still trying to pedal this fraud and still engaging in this infringement.  The T-ROH organization has gone so far as to buy the interests of the Scottish corporation that defrauded us back in 1868, and they think they are going to do the same thing again.

Now,  we know that these are just commercial corporations trying to hoodwink us into thinking that "they" are our government, when in fact, we, the individual living people and our unincorporated states, are the government. 

We need to define and organize ourselves properly and by the millions. We  need to tell our employees how high to jump, instead of being robbed and defrauded by the Hired Help--- but before we can do that, we need to firmly grasp who we are and in what capacity we act. 

First, we are Americans.  We are not any species of "U.S. Citizen".  All U.S. Citizens are employees or dependents of the Federal Government. 

Second, we don't act in any incorporated capacity at all. 

Third, our states/States of the Union are not incorporated and are not commercial corporations.

Fourth, to act as American State Citizens and assemble our States requires us to expatriate from all other citizenship obligations.  Our Forefathers did not allow split loyalties and conflicts of interest.  You are either in or out.

This means that federal employees and dependents cannot participate in the actual American Government until they retire or otherwise leave such status.

Regretfully, this is a sticking point with the members of the MGJA and it is not negotiable.

So, those of us who do understand the logic and the history and the law and the requirements of running the actual American Government must draw the line and soldier on. 

Please contact me if you understand the simple logic presented above and wish to act as State Assembly Coordinator for your State of the Union. 

A contact list will be posted on my website and various other websites so that people will be able to directly contact State Assembly Coordinators.

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About T-ROH and Their Garbage


By Anna Von Reitz


What T-ROH (The Reign of Heaven and Keith Livingway) is spreading and encouraging is all 100% garbage. 

Ignorant people who don't know the difference between the Universal Catholic Church (which means all churches everywhere of every denomination that are devoted to the teachings and imitation of Yeshuah, known as The Christ) and the Roman Catholic Church have misinterpreted my message to Cardinal George of Chicago, but if you bother to go to my website, www.annavonreitz.com and read the letter in context you will see for yourself what the tenor of my communications to the Catholic Clergy worldwide has been for many years.  Read the Letter to Cardinal George posted there and see if you can in any way interpret that as the work of a "Vatican Agent". 

Then also read my book, Disclosure 101, which details the work I have done for many years to try to correct this horrorific mistreatment of humanity. 

T-ROH the source of all this garbage is trying to get Americans to "sign up" for their private commercial corporation and its services, just like numerous other persons and entities are trying to get Americans to sign up for their "governmental services", but the fact of the matter is that the actual government of this country is vested in the living people and not in any commercial corporation.  Those corporations are supposed to be taking their directions from us, and acting as subcontractors of our actual government. 

The problem is that this scam promoted by commercial corporations like the "U.S. Inc." and "U.S.A. Inc." and "UNITED STATES, INC." and "U.S. Corp" and "the United States of America, Inc." and "The United States of America, Inc." and "The Republic for the United States of America, Inc." and "E Pluribus Unum the United States of America, Inc. "---- and believe me, I could go on ---- has gone on so long, that people have literally forgotten what the actual American Government is and how it is supposed to function. 

And I am teaching a whole new generation of Americans to be Americans and how to peacefully and safely restore the government they are owed. 

Naturally, none of these commercial corporations want that.  They want to ride rough-shod over their actual employers and be in control of our resources and our lives.  That's why they want us to sign private contracts with them instead of them having to obey the public contracts -- the Constitutions --- that already exist. 

I am destroying their whole "system" of things and so they attack the messenger, but it won't help them.  Trump has the message.  The American military has the message.  The Queen has the message.  The Pope has the message.  Millions of people all over the world have the message.  And the messenger doesn't even count. 

They can say all the vile things that they can dream up about me, but it doesn't change the Truth I have told the world. 

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Sexagesima Sunday

Rev. Fr. Leonard Goffine's
The Church's Year


In the Introit of this day's Mass, the Church brings before us one who seeks to be loosed from his sins, and calls on God for help and assistance.

INTROIT Arise, why sleepest thou , O Lord? arise, and cast us not off to the end: why turnest thou thy face away, and forgettest our trouble? Our belly hath cleaved to the earth: arise, O Lord, help us and deliver us. O God, we have heard with our ears; our Fathers have declared to us. (Ps. XLIII. 23. 25.) Glory be to the Father and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost, as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.
COLLECT O God, who seest that we trust not in aught we do; mercifully grant that by the protection of the Doctor of the Gentiles we may be defended against all adversities. Through our Lord Jesus Christ Thy Son, who liveth and reigneth with Thee, in the Unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end, Amen.
EPISTLE (II. Cor. XI. 19-33; to XII. 1-9,) Brethren, you gladly suffer the foolish; whereas yourselves are wise. For you suffer if a man bring you into bondage, if a man devour you, if a man take from you, if a man be lifted up, if a man strike you on the face. I speak according to dishonor, as if we had been weak in this part. Wherein if any man dare (I speak foolishly), I dare also. Are they Hebrews? so am I. Are they Israelites? so am I. Are they the seed of Abraham? so am I. Are they the ministers of Christ (I speak as one less wise,) I am more: in many more labors, in prisons more frequently, in stripes above measure, in deaths often. Of the Jews five times did I receive forty stripes save one. Thrice was I beaten with rods; once was I stoned; thrice I suffered shipwreck; a night and a day I was in the depth of the sea. In journeying often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils from my own nation, in perils from the Gentiles, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils from false brethren. In labor and painfulness, in much watchings, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness; besides those things which are without, my daily instance, the solicitude for all the Churches. Who is weak, and I am not weak? Who is scandalized, and I am not on fire? If I must needs glory, I will glory of the things that concern my infirmity. The God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who is blessed forever, knoweth that I lie not. At Damascus the governor of the nation under Aretas the king, guarded the city of the Damascenes to apprehend me; and through a window in a basket was I let down by the wall, and so escaped his hands. If I must glory (it is not expedient indeed); but I will come to the visions and revelations of the Lord. I know a man in Christ above fourteen years ago, (whether in, the body I know not, or out of the body, I know not, God knoweth): such an one rapt even to the third heaven. And I know such a man (whether in the body or out of the body, I cannot tell, God knoweth) : that he was caught up into paradise; and heard secret words, which it is not granted to man to utter. For such an one I will glory; but for myself I will glory nothing, but in my infirmities. For though I should have a mind to glory, I shall not be foolish; for I will say the truth. But I forbear, lest any man should think of me above that which he seeth in me, or anything he heareth from me. And lest the greatness of the revelations should exalt me, there was given me a sting of my flesh, an angel of Satan, to buffet me. For, which thing thrice I besought the Lord, that it might depart from me. And he said to me: My grace is sufficient for thee; for power is made perfect in infirmity. Gladly therefore will I glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may dwell in me.
Why is St. Paul mentioned in the Mass of this day, and why is this epistle read?
Because in Rome the Station or Church service is held on this day in the Church of St. Paul and because the Church continues to encourage us to work according to the example given by St. Paul who, with the grace of God, accomplished and suffered so much; also because we should labor for the honor of God and the salvation of our souls and faithfully cooperate with the grace of God. 
Why, at the beginning of this epistle, does St. Paul say so much at his own praise?
Not out of ambition for honor and glory, but to honor God, and for the love and advantage of the Corinthians, who allowed themselves to be deceived by mercenary impostors and false prophets; that he might make public the craftiness of those deceivers who assumed the appearance of the true apostles, as Satan took the form of a good angel. To shame these, and to remove the obstacles they had placed in the way of the gospel, St. Paul was obliged to reveal to the Corinthians the things he had performed and endured in propagating the holy gospel. By trials and sufferings is the true apostle known; the false apostles, the hirelings, as Christ calls them, only care for their own bodies, for temporal advantages, not for the salvation of souls. We see this exemplified in our days by the heretical missionaries who, when there is suffering, when there is martyrdom, take to flight, for their eyes are directed only to the present life and a large income, while the Catholic missionaries rejoice if, for Christ's sake, and for the salvation of souls, they are permitted to suffer, and made worthy to endure the cruel death of the martyr.
Of whom does St. Paul relate such marvels?
Of himself, but from humility and modesty he does not say so; fourteen years before, forty-four years after the birth of Christ, St. Paul was rapt to the third heaven, that is, to the abode of happy spirits; but to preserve him in humility God permitted Satan to use the concupiscence of the flesh, which is like a sting in the body of man, as a temptation to the apostle, and by which he was continually tormented.
ASPIRATION Grant me, O God,. thy grace that in these evil days of false doctrines I may remain stead fast to Thy holy gospel which in the holy Catholic Church remains pure and unchanged; never let me be deterred from obeying its precepts, neither by the charms of the world nor by the mockery and reproaches of the wicked.

GOSPEL (Luke VIII. 4-15.) At that time, when very great multitude was gathered together and hastened out of the cities unto him, he spoke by a similitude: The sower went out to sow his seed. And as he sowed, some fell by the wayside; and it was trodden down, and the fowls of the air devoured it. And other some fell upon a rock; and as soon as it was sprung up, it withered away, because it had no moisture. And other some fell among thorns; and the thorns growing up with it, choked it. And other some fell upon good ground; and being sprung up, yielded fruit a hundredfold. Saying these things, he cried out: He that hath ears to hear, let him hear. And his disciples asked him what this parable might be. To whom he said: To you it is given to know the mystery of the kingdom of God, but to the rest in parables; that seeing, they may not see, and hearing, they may not understand. Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God. And they by the way-side are they that hear: then the devil cometh, and taketh the word out of their heart, lest believing they should be saved. Now they upon the rock are they who, when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no roots, for they believe for a while, and in time of temptation they fall away. And that which fell among thorns are they who have heard, and going their way, are choked with the cares and riches, and pleasures of this life, and yield no fruit. But that on the good ground are they who, in a good and perfect heart, hearing the word, keep it, and bring forth fruit in patience.
Why is the Word of God compared to a seed?
Because from the word of God germinates the fruit of good works, as from good seed grows good fruit; as it is impossible, therefore, for an unsowed field to produce good fruit, so is it impossible for man without the seed of God's word to produce good fruits of the spirit.
Why does Christ cry out at the parable: He that hath ears to hear, let him hear?
Because of the importance and necessity of the doctrine which was contained in the parable. For to hear the word of God is absolutely necessary for salvation, as the Apostle indicates: How shall they believe him (Jesus) of whom they have not heard? (Rom. X. 14.) Jesus calls those happy who hear the word of God and keep it. (Luke XI. 28.) And on this subject St. Augustine says: "Be assured, my brethren, that as the body becomes weakened by want and hunger, and wastes to a mere shadow, so the soul that is not nourished by the word of God, becomes shrunken, worthless and unfit for any good work."
Whence comes so much cockle of evil, when the seed of God's word is so abundantly sowed?
Because, as Christ says, the seed falls now by the wayside, now upon a rock, now among thorns, seldom upon good soil, that is to say, those who hear the word of God are as a highway, over which many distracting thoughts are traveling which tread down the scattered seed, or, like fowls of the air devour it; they are like rocks, hardened by their prejudices or repeated crimes, so that the divine word cannot take root; again, they are so overgrown by the thorns of worldly cares, the constant desire for wealth and riches, and sensual delights, that even if they receive the seed, it is unable to grow and bear fruit.
ON THE POWER OF GOD’S WORD
The word of God is compared, by the Prophet Jeremias, to a hammer which crushes hearts as hard as rocks, and to a fire that dries up the swamps of vice, and consumes inveterate evil habits. (Jer. XXIII. 29.) The Psalmist compares it to thunder that makes all tremble, a storm-wind that bends and breaks the cedars of Lebanon, that is, proud and obstinate spirits; a light that dispels the darkness of ignorance; and a remedy that cures sin. (Ps. XXVIII. 3. 5., CXVIII. 105.) St. Paul compares it to a sword that divides the body from the soul, that is, the carnal desires from the spirit; (Hebr. IV. 12.) the Apostle James to a mirror in which man sees his stains and his wrongs. (Jam. I, 23.) the Prophet Isaias to a precious rain that moistens the soil of the soul and fertilizes it; (Isai: LV. 10. 11.) and Jesus Himself compares it to a seed that when it falls on good ground, brings forth fruit a hundredfold. (Luke VIII. 8.) One single grain of this divine seed produced the most marvelous fruits of sanctity in St. Augustine, St. Anthony the Great, in St. Nicholas of Tolentino, and others; for St. Augustine was converted by the words: "Let us walk honestly as in the day: not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and impurities, not in contention and envy." (Rom. XIII. 13.) St. Anthony by the words. If thou wilt be perfect, go, sell what thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me." (Matt XIX. 21.) Nicholas of Tolentino was brought to Christian perfection by the words: "Love not the world, nor the things which are in the world. (I. John II. 15.)
How should we prepare ourselves to be benefited by the word of God?
We must be good, well-tilled soil, that is, we must have a heart that loves truth, desires to learn, and humbly and sincerely seeks salvation; we must listen to the word of God with due preparation and attention, keep the divine truths we have heard, in our heart, frequently consider and strive to fulfill them.
What should be done before the sermon?
We should endeavor to purify our conscience, for, as St. Chrysostom demands; "Who would pour precious juice into a vessel that is not clean, without first washing it?" We should, therefore, at least cleanse our hearts by an ardent sorrow for our sins, because the spirit of truth enters not into the sinful soul; (Wisd. I. 4.) we should ask the Holy Ghost for the necessary enlightenment, for little or no fruit can be obtained from a sermon if it is not united with prayer; we should listen to the sermon with a good motive; that is, with a view of hearing something edifying and instructive; if we attend only through curiosity, the desire to hear something new, to criticize the preacher, or to see and to be seen, we are like the Pharisees who for such and similar motives went to hear Christ and derived no benefit therefrom. “As a straight sword goes not into a crooked sheath, so the word of God enters not into a heart that is filled with improper motives." We should strive to direct, our minds rightly, that is, to dispel all temporal thoughts, all needless distraction, otherwise the wholesome words would fall but upon the ears, would not penetrate the heart, and the words of Christ be fulfilled: They have ears, and hear not.
How should we comfort ourselves during the sermon?
We should listen to the sermon with earnest, reverent attention, for God speaks to us through His priests, and Christ says to them: Who hears you, hears me. (Luke X. 16.) We must listen to the priests, therefore, not as to men, but as to God's ambassadors, for every priest can say with St. Paul: We are ambassadors for Christ, God, as it were, exhorting by us. (II. Cor. V. 20.) "If," says St. Chrysostom, "when the letter of a king is read, the greatest quiet and attention prevails, that nothing may be lost, how much more should we listen with reverence and perfect silence to the. word of God?"           The word of God is, and ever will be, a divine seed, which, when properly received, produces precious fruit, by what priest soever sowed; for in the sowing it matters not what priest sows, but what soil is sowed. Be careful, also, that you do not apply that which is said to others, but take it to yourself, or the sermon will be of no benefit to you. Are you free from those vices which the preacher decries and against which he battles? then, thank God, but do not despise others who are perhaps laboring under them, rather pray that they may be released and you preserved from falling into them. Keep also. from sleeping, talking, and other distractions, and remember, that whoever is of God, also willingly hears his word. (John VIII. 47.)
What should be done after the sermon?
We should then strive to put into practice the good we have heard, for God justifies not those who hear the law, but those who keep it, (Rom. II. 13.) and those who hear the word of God and do not conform their lives to it, are like the man who looks into the mirror, and having looked into it goes away, and presently forgets what manner of man he is. (Fam. I. 23. 24.) To practice that which has been heard, it is above all necessary that it should be kept constantly in mind, and thoughtfully considered. St. Bernard says: "Preserve the word of God as you would meat for your body, for it is a life-giving bread, and the food of your soul. Happy those, says Christ, who keep it. Receive it, therefore, into your soul's interior, and let it reach your morals and your actions."
That food which cannot be digested, or is at once thrown out, is useless; the food should be well masticated, retained, and by the digestive powers worked up into good blood. So not only on the day, but often during the week, that which was heard in the sermon should be thought of and put into practice. Speak of it to others, thus will much idle talk be saved, many souls with the grace of God roused to good, and enlightened in regard to the evil they had not before seen in themselves and in future will avoid. Let us listen to others when they repeat what was said in the sermon. Heads of families should require their children and domestics to relate what they have heard preached. Let us also entreat God to give us grace that we may be enabled to practice the precepts given us.
PRAYER How much am I shamed, O my God, that the seed of Thy Divine word, which Thou hast sowed so often and so abundantly in my heart, has brought forth so little fruit! Ah! have mercy on me, and so change my heart, that it may become good soil, in which Thy word may take root, grow without hindrance, and finally bring forth fruits of salvation. Amen.