I just moved and started at a new parish.
Wonderful surprise – altar bells at theraising of the host and the chalice. I remember ringing the bells when I was an altar boy (and tripping over them on one occasion). But I haven’t heard them in church for probably thirty years.

Oddly, this is only at Masses celebrated by the assistant who is younger (naturally) than the pastor.


Thirty years? Wow!


Of course you know that bells are not required. But yeah, there is something special in hearing them. That is, as long as they are in working order. I recall a set of bells that fell apart during their ringing at Mass. Hardly a mystical moment then! :slight_smile:


Oops! Oh, well, these things happen sometimes.

I forgot to mention that our assistant includes the Confetior, which the pastor and most churches I’ve been to skip. I don’t know if it’s because folks are in a hurry but it seems people skip whatever they possibly can. I don’t really get it. The confetior might add a minute or a little more. Reading the bracketed parts of the readings that can be skipped. For what? To get out three minutes earlier?

Maybe I shouldn’t talk because I’ve skipped going to Mass plenty of Sundays. But now that I’m back I’d prefer the whole thing.


We use then at my parish :slight_smile: It is a nice tradition.


We have never stopped ringing them in our church. At masses and also at Benediction. And we celebrate the NO masses not the TLM.

Glad that you have found it so wonderful! Brings a sense of sacredness for me! Just my opinion.


Bells at the raising of the Host-
Bells at Mass -
(smiles in reminiscence)
Now that you mention them, I miss them.


The bells are great, I wish we had them at my parish. But our PP is 65, so liberalism is the order of the day *(Eucharistic ministers, haugen & haas, no bells, inclusive language). *As for the Confiteor, the Penitential Rite can never be skipped. One of the options may be used (eg. You were sent to heal the contrite. Lord have Mercy &c.) or it may be replaced (e.g Ash Wednesday or funeral liturgies).


I’ve found it interesting that in more “progressive” northwestern dioceses like Seattle or Portland, the majority of parishes use altar bells. Many have resurrected them after years of neglect. In fact, Seattle’s St. James Cathedral uses altar bells, and Portland’s Immaculate Conception Cathedral frequently uses two sets at once! Also, some parishes in those dioceses will sound the tower bell during the Consecration.


The most beautiful thing happened at Mass on Sunday - I was at the more solemn late-morning mass which I had only gone to once before, ages ago. At the consecration they actually rang the STEEPLE bells rather than the hand bells. Talk about your ‘smells and bells’ :smiley: :cool: :thumbsup:


Our parish rings the bells at the consecration, too, and we love it. It just adds a touch of reverence to the moment that is most appropriate, IMO.

There’s a parish in the downtown area of Mpls that rings a bell that goes: ding, dong, dong instead of the usual multiple tinkling bells. It sounds so funny to me I’ve been tempted to giggle, Lord help me! :o


Hooray for bells! But I have to say…I’m 30 and I’ve never attended a parish (for any length of time) that *did not *have bells. I had no idea this was a rarity.


There’s a parish in the downtown area of Mpls that rings a bell that goes: ding, dong, dong instead of the usual multiple tinkling bells. It sounds so funny to me I’ve been tempted to giggle, Lord help me! :o

I have heard bells like this and it makes me want to say, “THIS is NBC…”:eek:


We have them at our parish as well, and it’s wonderful to hear.


I belong to the Cathedral parish and recently the Bishop bought us a set of sanctus bells. Our Rector and one of the Priests in Residence love the bells, but our Rector Emeritus really dislikes them (he is getting up there in years and has several health problems so I am going to assume that perhaps they are hard on his ears as he seems to flinch at any loud sounds, even the organ on occasion).

We actually had a Sacristan hide this set on the morning the Bishop was celebrating, our Rector made a quick call to a local Catholic store to borrow a set that looked and sounded just like the missing set (which we did find in a rather odd place).


My pastor who is a young pastor (only about 40) brought back the bells about a year ago. Previously, my parish had never used them. The last time I had heard bells was probably 25 years ago when I was a child at my former parish. I love the bells. They add so much of a sense of reverance to the Epiclesis and Consecration.


We have them but I recently trained our new altar servers and suggested to the Father that we need new bells because the one they were using was this tiny little bell. He ended up buying new bells! They are beautiful! I didn’t expect him to do this but he is so willing to really get things back on track.

I had to look up when they are actually suppose to ring them. I wanted to stay with the older tradition. So I looked it up. You actually ring them a few times but the kids caught on very quick!

Apparently bells used to ring at the start of Mass as well.

I love the bells and had a great time teaching the kids this. It’s going to be very lovely. :slight_smile:


Yes, and this results in the most glorious yet solemn effect.


If only the majority of parishes had a good tower bell. Many in London have none at all, being more like warehouses than Houses of God, or they do not work. Sad to say.


Lucky dog having bells! The pastor at my parish suggested bringing back the bells and was shut down by the parish liturgy committee because they were “going back” to a pre-Vatican II. God save us from liturgy committees that work off of feelings rather than sound liturgical theology and knowledge of rubrics. I also think that the bells enhance the congregation’s awareness of the Real Presence in the sacrifice of the Mass. I think many in the Church are lacking that nowadays.

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