February 19, 2021: Reflection for the First Sunday of Lent…February 21, 2021

By Cindy Wenninghoff, Notre Dame Associate

The readings for this Sunday’s Mass offer a good foundation to begin our season of Lent.  In the first reading we are reminded of the covenant that God made with Noah and the bow that he gave as a sign that he would never again destroy the world with water.  Despite the depth of wickedness that surrounded the people and which surround us now, the bow in the clouds serves as a sign that God has made a promise that he will preserve us until we can be redeemed – and we have promised to follow his ways, which are love and truth.

In the second reading Peter reaches out to us with hope – Christ suffered for our sins once to bring us back to God.  And in the gospel, Christ, after 40 days in the desert and being tempted by Satan, proclaimed “This is the time of fulfillment. The kingdom of God is at hand.  Repent and believe in the gospel.”

Such is the time of Lent – a time of preparation, a time of renewal, a time of repentance, a time of sacrifice, a time of prayer.  It’s not a time of feeling shame, but an awareness that sin separates us from God.  It is also a very personal journey  as we open our hearts to God in silence and in prayer. And we must never lose sight that at the end of these 40 days of sacrifice, is much joy in the Resurrection.