The face of one’s family member as opposed to the face of a stranger can elicit emotions that are sometimes similar or varied. When a child surpasses expectations in an exam, there is a feeling of joy and excitement from everyone. When an athlete achieves a gold medal in record time, there is an admiration and applause from all. In both instances, it matters not whose family the child or athlete belongs. Everyone joins in the celebration. However, this may not be true when things go awry. When a child misbehaves at school, there can be calls to have that child removed, except from the family to whom the child belongs. When a member of a team performs badly and causes a loss, the calls come to sack him, except from those who are close to him. Jesus tells us to be merciful (Lk. 6:36). As the family of God, we are not strangers. Let mercy reign for all. Lord Jesus, You are the source of mercy in our lives. May we recognize Your unbounded love, so that we can extend mercy to those who are close or distant in our lives. Amen.