The First Sunday of Lent - Reflection by Canon Leslie


Join us for live-streamed worship on Facebook and read Canon Leslie's blog post for the First Sunday of Lent, 21 February 2021.

Today is the First Sunday of Lent, the season of the Church’s year when we prepare for the events of Holy Week and Good Friday. It is a season of reflection and penitence. Today’s Gospel reading from Mark invites us to call to mind Jesus’ temptations in the wilderness. All three synoptic gospels portray Jesus’ ministry beginning with a period of forty days in the wilderness tempted by Satan. Unlike Matthew and Luke, Mark’s account does not describe the temptations experienced by Jesus. The temptations described by Matthew and Luke challenge Jesus to adopt a model of Messiahship which would win power, carry wide public appeal, and not lead to the inevitable cross on Good Friday. In one of these temptations Jesus is challenged to throw himself from the pinnacle of the temple. A Messiah who could survive such activities would be guaranteed a following.

For those of you who wanted to do some thinking and preparation for today’s service during the preceding week, I invited you to reflect on the image of showman. Jesus was being tempted to be a showman, but he resisted that temptation. Today’s picture from the illustrated communion book, The Lord is Here! focuses the note of penitence for the occasions when we have not made the right choices.

Next Sunday, the Second Sunday of Lent, focuses our attention on how Jesus foretells his death and resurrection to his disciples. The image to help us prepare for next Sunday is the cross. You can find out more about that theme here We would really appreciate you letting us know how you are using these materials. Please send us your ideas and photos of the things you may create; email them to

To find out more about the book, The Lord is Here!, please follow this link to the relevant page of the St. Mary’s Centre website:

We warmly invite you to join us in for the live-stream of worship in the Main Space at 10:30 am on our Facebook page:

With Lenten greetings,

Canon Leslie