Take strong Catholic roots, 100 tons of ice cream, blend them into a successful business model for more than two decades, and you’ve nailed the recipe for Alaska’s Rich Owens and one of the nation’s most prominent ice cream shops.
The week after Easter saw the demolition of the old rectory at Holy Family Cathedral in downtown Anchorage, and if luck, weather and other logistics associated with building go according to plan, Dominican priests could move into new housing the week before Christmas.
The weather in western Alaska poses challenges for flying. On one particular Sunday Father Garrett had embarked upon a trip to a tiny village. Gusty winds and a gut feeling told him to stop short and land at the airport in King Salmon. He spent the night, winds diminished, and he decided to take off the next morning. Like many times before, he warmed up the engine, taxied out to the runway and throttled up to begin his takeoff. No sooner had he begun gaining altitude than the engine — his only engine — blew up.
“I don’t believe there’s ever been a partnership where the three hospitals in town have come together around an issue like this,” she observed. “You have to remember that this is a business industry and there’s competition. So what’s happened here is that leadership teams at our hospitals have seen the bigger picture, and they’ve come together with passion and good intentions to help the most vulnerable people in our community. It’s amazing.”
While it might not be strange to see a priest teaching theology in a Catholic school, Father Mark Francis Manzano packs a background heavy in the sciences as part of his calling. He told the Catholic Anchor that, as a Dominican priest, the emphasis of his training lies in the sciences as stepping stones to theology.
The belief in the real Body of Christ comes from the Last Supper and the Gospel of Saint John, where Jesus says, “Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life … for my flesh is true food and my blood true drink.”
The most severe crimes demand drawing from within himself to treat hardened criminals with the same respect as any other citizen. That’s where his Catholic faith provides perspective. “Were it not for my faith,” Bowe said, “this would be a pretty bad job.”
“They’ll tell you funny stories and sad stories, and all they really need is someone to listen,” 14-year-old Angela Houser said of her regular visits to the Alaska Veterans and Pioneers Home in Palmer. “Just to see them light up when they tell their stories makes me happy.”
It’s out with the old and in with the older for a new look at Holy Family Cathedral in downtown Anchorage. Of the many renovations, the most eye-catching upgrade towers above the pews in the form of six 125-year-old stained glass windows. “They could be older than that,” said Dominican Father Anthony Patalano, who is pastor of the cathedral.
Bury the dead. The words may seem over-simplified in the pragmatic rush of everyday life, but not for those Alaskans who have taken on the task of honoring them as prescribed within the corporal works of mercy. For Dan Belanger, burying the faithful departed and looking ahead to what awaits them in the hereafter comes as an inheritance — an duty he admits befell him with the passing of his father, but not without a bit of preparation. In the context of the battlefield, Dan knows death all too well, but deeper down, he forges ahead in a legacy that honors death as the gateway to eternity.