People in Morris often ask why the Assumption Catholic Church rings its giant bell at 8 a.m., noon and 6p.m.
It is old custom to call Christians to prayer that dates to the 11th century. The people stopped working, dropped to their knees, and prayed the Angelus. (angel).
The Angelus commemorates the Incarnation when the Angel Gabriel declared to the Virgin Mary and she responded:
“Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it done unto me according to Thy Word,” and the Word was made Flesh and dwelt among us (Originally the bells were rung at 6 a.m., noon and 6 p.m., but due to a complaint, the earlier ringing was changed to 8 a.m.)
A recent article in the National Catholic Register pointed out that the devil hates bells, such as the century-old bell rung by Assumption, and bells rung by other Morris churches, such as Good Shepherd, Zion and First Lutheran.
The article also states the devil hates the electronic recording used by some churches, or the electronic carillon bells that used to resonate across Summit and Calvary Cemeteries, and now
is heard at St. Clare Church in Surprise, Arizona, after they were forced to be moved from the Morris cemeteries.
Whether you believe in the devil or not, or pray the Angelus, the next time you hear the bells, you’ll know why they are rung.