Misericordes sicut Pater

User-generated content across social media platforms brings unprecedented empowerment to many. But with that empowerment should come responsibility lest such enablement slide down a slippery slope into offence, deception - such as we have seen of late with fake reporting - and self deception, just one short step away from self obsession.

Fascination with Number One runs totally counter to the message of mercy, which has been so much at the forefront of our minds of late. Now that the Year of Mercy has drawn to a close let’s not hope that we now draw a veil and forget all about it.

Coming back for a moment to what is called ‘Citizen Journalism’, surely ours is now the responsibility to help pour oil on those waters and to help shape to better effect how society behaves, is seen and looks at itself. That’s not easy.

It’s hard when someone moves to block you in in the car park and from whom you get a ranting mouthful of obscene abuse when you gently point out the inconvenience caused. Holding your tongue is one thing. Showing mercy takes much more effort. But mercy is the better part:
 ‘The quality of mercy is not strained;

It droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven Upon the place beneath. It is twice blest;
It blesseth him that gives and him that takes’

From a speech by Portia in William Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice Act IV, Scene 1

mercy n. compassion; forgiveness; disposition to be kind; something for which to be thankful; relief; alleviation of distress. Synonyms: leniency; clemency; charity

Jay Kettle-Williams


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