On first reading these passages may seem disconnected, however the key word may be “decisiveness”. It all begins with the decision of the Father on the side of mercy in sending His Son. This word or practice is not normally associated with American Catholicism as we have not yet been evangelized or completed our discipleship. Instead, there is bloodshed everywhere, the poor cry out, and peace and justice are out on the curb. The decision for us is to encounter and accompany. That’s the theme of these readings.