Two important messages come to us today from the Word of God as we begin the first week of Lent.

The first two readings speak to us of Noah, who with his family was saved in the ark from the flood.  St. Peter tells us in the second reading that the story of Noah is a figure of baptism.  We have been saved through the waters of baptism, and now it is our task in the season of Lent to struggle against all that has stained the innocence we received the day of our baptism.  We pray also for the many who are preparing for baptism in the Easter Season.

The Gospel gives us hope in our struggle against the sins and vices that have marred the image of God in us and weakened or destroyed  the grace we received at baptism.  Jesus went into the desert to be tempted.  He won the victory over Satan, and we too will win the victory in Jesus if we are patient, if we rely on Jesus and turn to the grace he offers us especially in the Sacrament of Reconciliation.

I encourage you once again to sincerely face your faults and weaknesses in particular the resentments and unwillingness to forgive that plagues our hearts.  Let us turn to God in prayer, sacrifice and works of charity, sharing one another’s burdens in these difficult times.  May Mary, the Mother of Mercy, obtain for us the grace of a true conversion, so that we may joyfully renew the vows of our own baptism on Easter Sunday.

Flocknote is a way for you to connect directly with St. Helen, Holy Spirit, or the diocese through text messages or emails.   You will receive links to video messages, notifications about parish ministries, upcoming events and more. You can choose which flock to join or you may join them all.

To join Holy Spirit’s flock:  There are two ways to join.  Visit our network at flocknote.com/holyspiritwinfield and follow the steps to join, or using your cell phone text belong to 845876 and follow the steps.

To join St. Helen’s flock: There are two ways to join. Visit our network at flocknote.com/sthelen and follow the steps to join, or using your cell phone text helen to 84576 and follow the steps.

To join The Pastoral Center for the Diocese of Gary’s flock:  There are two ways to join. You can visit www.flocknote.com/DioceseofGary and follow the sign-up steps. Or, you can text the word GARY to the phone number 84576, which will take you to the sign-up page.  When you sign up, you’ll receive links to video messages from Bishop Hying, notifications about upcoming events and much more.

**You don’t have to download an app. You don’t have to pay to join. (Text STOP to 84576 to stop txt notifications at any time. Text HELP for help. There is no charge for this service, but your carrier message and data rates may apply. View privacy policy & conditions at www.flocknote.com/txt.