Friday, April 11, 2008


April 11, 2008 - When Shepherd 1 touches down next week, Catholics all over the United States will joyfully welcome Benedict XVI our Church’s spiritual leader. To mark this momentous event I have a modest proposition to put forward: The simultaneous ringing of all Catholic Church bells across the entire country.

While there will be very few opportunities for American Catholics to greet the Holy Father in Washington, D.C. and New York our ancient bells can proclaim a message of welcome and joy in acknowledgement of the arrival of the Holy Father.

Traditionally church bells have always played a significant role in Catholic parish churches. They call the community of faith to prayer, they mark the passage of time and they are cast personifications of our Catholic celebrations as well as tragedies. Every day throughout the world, the peals of consecrated bells announce the Angelus and the De Profundis to commemorate the Incarnation and our remembering of the faithful departed. Bells are also signs and symbols of our Catholic celebration of new life and significant moments for our Catholic Church.

Notably, the tolling bell marks the end of a papal reign, and joyfully rings with the election of a new Pontiff. In reality, our sacred church bells are the forerunner to instant messaging and texting, which is part of our daily society.

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