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Wednesday, October 5, 2022

Are You a Lemon or a Honey?

When I was a teenager the girls used to have a practice called "lemon sessions." A group of girls would get together and take turns telling each other what was wrong with them.

Ouch! Great way to build up friendships, eh? 

I've been thinking about that lately and how wonderful it would have been to hold "honey sessions" instead, where the girls affirmed the goodness of each other. As St. Francis de Sales often said, you catch more flies with a spoonful of honey than with a barrel full of vinegar. 

But, let's face it, our fallen human nature leans toward "lemon sessions." We are quick to see and condemn the flaws in others while we excuse and rationalize our own faults and failures. 

"It's my parents' fault! They_____(Fill in the blank.)" 

"I can't help it because ______ (Fill in the blank.)"

"I have a right to be happy!"

"I'm only human."

"The devil made me do it."

I was thinking of this particularly this morning while I was moderating blog comments. The divide over the Russia/Ukraine conflict is basically a massive lemon or honey session on both sides. Russia (read Putin) is evil incarnate and their history proves they have been evil forever. Ukraine (Read Zelensky) is a hero who should continue to receive billions from American taxpayers to continue waging war until the monster Putin is removed and the globalists can take over Russia's assets.

And if you switch to the pro-Russia side of the debate you get the evil NATO/America/Ukraine alliance and the heroic Russians fighting one-world-government. Stark divide, eh?

Regular readers, of course, know which side of the divide Susan and I fall on. But what I find particularly... not sure what word to use...interesting?...odd?...concerning? Well, whatever word you use I shake my head over some commenters turning the entire history of a country into a black and white assessment. Russia was evil forever with an evil history going back to the beginning. Apparently she never did anything good and, perhaps, she should be nuked and wiped off the map of the world. (To be fair, none of the commenters said that, but perhaps a few believe it.)

There is not a nation on the planet that has a snow white history. I cringe when Sean Hannity talks about American exceptionalism. As a matter of fact, I can't stand to watch his show. Sorry, Sean, the number of atrocities and wars inflicted by our country are legion. We have exported abortion, contraception, and eugenics all over the world. 

I love America and I love our Founding Fathers and the government that gave us such a positive beginning. Even that beginning, however, was flawed by the Protestant ethic. That probably contributed to where we are today. It is only too obvious that many of our government leaders over the decades have betrayed us, committed acts to deliberately bring us into wars for their benefit, undermined our security and financial freedom, etc.

What's the solution? Mary's peace plan, of course, outlined at Fatima. Her rosary can hold back the forces intent on bringing us to World War III. The question is, do we have the resolve to listen to her and her Son, Jesus? Each of us must answer for himself. But we do, indeed, have the power to be honey for the world if we choose to be. 


Aqua said...

Astute observation. Much needed corrective. I could certainly use advice like that myself. I am certainly of the lemon-head variety, no doubt. At least I’m aware of it (first step to repentance is conviction).

I have often felt that the medium itself - internet based communication, absent human face to face contact and interaction, staring at a screen, intrinsically individual, zero spiritual elements as expressed by facial and non-verbal feedback - this dehumanized screen based communication medium in and of itself lends itself to selfish, self-centered communication outcomes. In addition, the public nature of the commentary lends itself to an unhealthy misperception that what we say means more than it might in a more intimate (normal) conversation - the “web” is witness.

Put it all together and it’s an unhealthy way for a Catholic to evangelize others and speak kindly to our brothers and sisters in the Faith. God did not mean conversation to be this way. But it’s a tool that I suppose must be used. As you say, though, *use with caution and temperance*.

Anonymous said...

Mary Ann - you're missing one side that has been clearly expressed. Neither Russia nor Ukraine are worthy of American or Christian support. Both governments are corrupt. Neither is led by a "Christian Statesman." Ukraine is led by a pornographic piano player. Russia is led by a murderous KGB officer. I don't want Russia to win, and I don't want the US to fight a proxy war with Russia.

Mary Ann Kreitzer said...

And America isn't worthy of being supported either, Anonymous, by your reasoning. But a country is more than its wicked leaders.

We are certainly no longer a Christian country. We are certainly not led by a "Christian Statesman." Two of our biggest businesses are abortion and porn which doesn't say much for our people either. The fastest growing "religious" group is "nones." We are a scandal to the world!

I'm not rooting to give Russia military or humanitarian aid, but I totally oppose our aid to Ukraine. Are you in favor of withdrawal of all American financial and technical support to Ukraine? Frankly, that's all I want. I don't want to aid Russia, but I want us out of a region where our interests are nonexistent and we are doing nothing but bringing the world closer to a third world war.

Anonymous said...

Yes. I don't support Ukraine, I don't want US military aid to Ukraine. You may have assumed I supported Ukraine because I don't agree with all the glowing reviews Putin's propaganda has received from you and others.

Sean Rose said...

"...all the glowing reviews... from you and others." I find the posts here on the subject of geopolitical events sober and cogent. I could argue that V. Putin is more a "Christian Statesman" than the apostate J. Biden. I'm not here to argue, I just like the writing and the ladies' Sensus Catholicus.

Aqua said...

For some reason, given the topic at hand is whether we should support nuclear WW III on behalf of the corruptostate Ukraine, perhaps turn what was civilization into a radioactive heap, (surely “anonymous” realizes this is the immediate rusk), I just found the reference to “glowing reviews …” strangely humorous.

Mary Ann Kreitzer said...

Thanks, Sean and Aqua, for your encouragement. Susan and I, whether people agree with us or not, are trying very seriously to form our wills according to the "sensus Catholicus." (Thank you for that, Sean.) We try to argue according to the Socratic method rather than launch into ad hominem attacks. Sometimes we do that better than at other times. We are all in the struggle.

Aqua, I particularly appreciate your civility and common sense. And the fact that, unlike some, you always stay on target rather than bringing in your personal agendas in posts that have nothing to do with them.

I'll be offering my rosary today for all our blog readers. May we all meet merrily in heaven, even the trolls.

Aqua said...

Mary Ann K,
That offering is much appreciated, much needed. Thank you.

And our family’s intention this afternoon will include yourself and all other intrepid bloggers like you that give of themselves this way to help keep the flames of the Faith alive and spreading.

Mary Ann Kreitzer said...

God bless you, Aqua. Thank you. I hope one day we can meet in person. If you are anywhere near the Shenandoah Valley and Woodstock, you are always welcome at Camp Kreitzer and your family as well! I will make deviled eggs to celebrate.

Aqua said...

I'll head over there, send you a link to my wife's life work - blogging and advocating for special needs adoptions, discussing and resolving parental adoption-related personal problems.

Sean Rose said...

I'll offer tomorrow's rosary for all my blog writers. I was introduced to this fine blog via Ms. Ann B and a shout out to SuperNerd. Thanks a million all you glorious catholic bloggers.