The Archdiocese of Boston has been invited to join with other dioceses in ringing Church bells to remember and honor the more than 330,000 lives lost to COVID-19 this year in the United States. In the Commonwealth of Massachusetts more than 12,000 people have died due to COVID-19.
Invited to participate by the Archdiocese of New York, parishes are encouraged to ring their Church bells tomorrow, Wednesday, December 30, 2020 at noon.
At the start of this pandemic Cardinal Seán said, “The meaning of faith is that we are not alone in times of challenge. Faith is the foundation of hope, and hope is the capacity to address the complex challenges of life without being overcome by them. They are gifts which yield courage. We nourish faith and hope, and therefore courage, through prayer in our houses of worship, in our communities and in our homes.” It was during these early days of the response to COVID-19 that he said, “we need to take care of each other.”
The Archdiocese of New York, which is encouraging dioceses to participate in this effort, acknowledged the following, “Our country has not witnessed a daily death toll on this scale in its recent history and, as the year draws to a close, there is a pronounced need to publicly acknowledge the devastating loss of life that the year brought with it. The Church is uniquely called to bring communities together to honor the dead and to offer a space for mourning, in order that the restoration that is sure to follow, in the Name of Christ, whom we honor this Christmas, may too begin. “
Traditionally, the ringing of church bells has been a call and a signal to the community that a moment of solemnity is taking place. Most often these occasions are gatherings for prayer, funerals, or weddings. Tomorrow, Wednesday, December 30 at noon, we encourage the ringing of the bells to mourn the souls lost, to comfort the families and friends who grieve, and to move forward, together, in the hope of the blessings that await us in 2021.