Saturday, April 12, 2008

Bells for Benedict

~from Whispers in the Loggia. The "modest proposal" is from Pewsitter
Communities should [ask or encourage their parishes to] participate in the joyful welcome of the Holy Father on April 15 [Tuesday]. Precisely at 4:00 PM, EDT, Benedict’s Catholic flock should participate in the joyful ringing of Catholic Church bells throughout the United States.

The tradition of ringing bells not only will show prayerful support and warm welcomes to the Holy Father, it will also provide an opportunity for American Catholics to illustrate their support of our great American exercise of religious freedom.
Of course, ten minutes might be a bit much to ask -- even an occasion of this sort isn't worth driving the neighbors crazy. If you can get away with ten, fine. But maybe, given the visit's coincidence with the third anniversary of B16's election, three minutes would be the most practical thing in a good number of places; as next week's texts will show, it always works better to get the message out succinctly and effectively than go overboard, losing ears (and gaining fury) along the way.

In addition to this, even for those places without bells, maybe the hour of arrival -- again, 4PM Eastern on Tuesday (3 Central, 2 Mountain, 1 Pacific, Noon in Alaska, and 10am on Hawaii) -- could be marked across the trenches with some sort of opportunity for public prayer for the Pope, the whole Stateside church and the visit's success: Holy Hour, Mass, Office, Te Deum, Rosary; again, whatever works.

If it isn't the most feasible thing in every place, at the very least, some sort of chance to gather and pray together would be especially appropriate in the cathedrals and other centrally-located churches... to say nothing of the no less than 60 minor basilicas across this land which, by definition, enjoy a special link to the chair of Peter.
Hmmmm, great idea on the bells and prayers. Our parish's neighbors are used to the bells ringing for the Angelus and call to Mass on Sundays.

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