1st Sunday of Lent Year B

Published on 15 Feb 2021

God’s Covenant

Grant, almighty God,

through the yearly observances of holy Lent,

that we may grow in understanding

of the riches hidden in Christ

and by worthy conduct pursue their effects.

Lent – a new liturgical season, and an opportunity to start again.

We can give thanks to God for giving us this season of grace. Lent is closely associated with God’s Covenant and with baptism, and the readings this Sunday strongly underline this.

In the First Reading from Genesis, God makes a Covenant with Noah’s people, saved from the flood by the ark. It is a Covenant of peace, symbolized by the rainbow.

St Paul, in the Second Reading, reminds us that just as Noah is saved from the waters, so we are saved by the waters of baptism. It is a pledge made to God through the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

The Psalm is a prayer that we may walk in God’s ways: a suitable prayer for beginning our Lenten journey.

The account of the temptations of Christ in Mark’s Gospel is very brief.

It is only after this experience that Jesus begins his ministry, calling people to repent and believe the Good News.

This week, we may give thanks for ‘this joyful season’ (as the Lenten preface calls it) – a time to prepare to celebrate the paschal mystery.

I establish my Covenant with you.     First Reading

Your ways, Lord, are faithfulness and love.    Responsorial Psalm

Christ himself, innocent though he was, died once for sins, died for the guilty, to lead us to God.      Second Reading

‘The time has come and the kingdom of God is close at hand. Repent, and believe the Good News.’     Gospel

This week’s texts if you want to explore further:

Genesis 9: 8–15; Psalm 24 (25); 1 Peter 3: 18–22; Mark 1: 12–15