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top Parable Marklin

Crafting the Light of Christ

By Gary Bouchard  |  Photos by Jeff Dachowski

Martin Marklin is not the first one to have damaged his parents’ kitchen with a messy mix of melted crayons and food coloring. Nor is he the first to have begun a worldwide enterprise out of his parents’ home. But Martin is almost certainly the first one to have done all this in the determined hope of bringing forth the perfect illuminating light of Christ to the world—and succeeded!

The enterprise that Martin began out of his parents’ St. Louis, Mo., kitchen in the early 1980s is now a 50,000-square-foot facility that lies along the banks of the Contoocook River on14 acres that Martin and his wife, Christine, call Windhover Farm. Besides the candle manufacturing plant, the land accommodates a thriving gift shop, the Marklin family home, an organic vegetable garden, various animals and the farm’s most revered and enterprising residents: honey bees – millions of them.

Marklin Candle Design provides handcrafted beeswax candles to thousands of churches and hundreds of cathedrals throughout the world, and have crafted candles for three popes when they visited this country.

Want to read more about how the Marklin family creates candles that illuminate churches throughout the world? Please click here to learn how you and your parish can receive Parable.

top PARABLE Kerper

Dear Father Kerper

Dear Father Kerper: In recent months, I have read about bishops calling on lay Catholics to do penance in reparation for the sins of bishops and priests. Shouldn’t the men in holy orders who committed crimes, covered them up and tolerated grave sins do their own penance? Why pass on punishment to people who had nothing to do with the sins of the hierarchy? This really irks me. I don’t understand how any bishop would ask lay people to pay the price for scandals they caused.

Your comments and questions bluntly express the sincere sentiments of many Catholics who justifiably feel alienated from their bishops and priests. The call for reparation is indeed understandably irritating and puzzling. As it often happens, we toss out words without proper explanation, thereby causing confusion and anger. So let’s walk through the notion of reparation.

On the surface, reparation obviously has something to do with repairing broken objects. In the case of the scandals, many people — not things — have been smashed to pieces, including innocent children, teenagers and family members. Moreover, the faith of many Catholics has suffered severe damage as have the good reputations of all bishops and priests.
In terms of our scandals, reparation is not primarily about punishment. Rather, it has to do with satisfaction for sin. Here we need to delve into the Church’s vast theological wisdom and retrieve some useful insights.

In terms of our scandals, reparation is not primarily about punishment. Rather, it has to do with satisfaction for sin. Here we need to delve into the Church’s vast theological wisdom and retrieve some useful insights.

Want to learn more about the theology of reparation?  Please click here to learn how you and your parish can receive Parable.

top Parable ViaCrucis2

Via Crucis: Walking with Christ on Good Friday

By Bridget Martin

Every Good Friday, hundreds of parishioners gather at St. Aloysius of Gonzaga Church (fondly known as St. Louis) in Nashua to walk with Jesus. Before starting their journey, they observe Jesus as he prays in the garden and urges his disciples to awaken. They watch as Judas bestows his traitorous kiss and soldiers surround Jesus and arrest him. Flanked by prisoners, Jesus is led onto the streets outside. The congregation files out behind him, prepared to follow Christ and bear witness to his suffering.

So begins Via Crucis, a Hispanic tradition that consists of re-enacting the Stations of the Cross. Commonly translated as “the Way of Sorrows,” Via Crucis spans 14 stations documenting the Passion of Christ, from the Garden of Gethsemane to the arrival of Jesus’s body at the tomb after his crucifixion. Good Friday, which falls on April 19 this year, is the most solemn day of the year for Christians – a time to reflect on Christ’s sacrifice for us. Through Via Crucis, his sacrifice comes to life.

“I look forward to this experience every year because it brings this incredible story of Jesus’ unconditional love for his people alive,” says Father Marcos Gonzalez-Torres, pastor of St. Louis Church and a native of Mexico. “It is a messy, human struggle, but one that should fill us all with hope. We experience this as a community, not just as a parish, and we hope that those we meet along the journey walk away changed as well.”

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top PARABLE FisherWhen Your Child Suffers, Turn It Over to God

There is a certain spot in the road that makes my blood run cold. It's the exact place where I got the text saying, "She has diabetes." The "she" was our daughter, then 10 years old. One day she was a bouncy little smarty pants, and the next day she just started to melt away like a little candle.

But there was a rescue. Our excellent doctors brought her back to health and trained us how to care for her. We came home from the hospital shortly before Easter, and I felt so many things: Fear. Gratitude. More fear. Dread. And most of all, a terrible, heavy pity for this little girl who would never again carelessly pop a handful of jellybeans into her mouth, or grab some hot chocolate after ice skating, or dig into a piece of cake at a friend's birthday party.

Or so I thought. We’ve learned diabetes is a manageable disease. But still, oh, how I wish she didn't have to manage it. I wish with all of a mother’s might that my little girl did not have to suffer, because I love her.

Here, too, there is help. As Catholics, we have access to a profound theology of human suffering, one that I cling to more and more gladly the older I get.

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Other Columns in the Current Issue

Bishop's Message - A Call to Hope, A Call To Act
Keeping Faith with Teens - Perfect Vision
Dear Father Kerper - The Theology of Reparation: How Ordinary Catholics are Restoring the Church to Holiness
On Call With Dr. Pepe - Strenghtening Catholic Health Care in NH
Catholic Charities Report - Helping Our Neighbors in Need
Have You Ever Thought of Being a Priest? - Meet Father Kyle Stanton
Marriage and Family Life - When Your Child Suffers, Turn It Over to God
Cover Story - Crafting the Light of Christ
Local News
Your Faith: Discipleship 101 - Building a Bridge of Trust
Via Crucis: Walking with Christ on Good Friday 
Catholic Life - Staying Grounded in the Truth of the Catholic Faith in this Time of Crisis
Catholic Quiz
School Profile - Trinity High School, Manchester
Calendar of Events
The Rest of the Week - The Belfry Caper, Wednesday, 9:30 A.M.
Mission Moment - St. Joseph Hospital's Frank Whipple Makes a Difference Every Day