18 March 2017
By Bryan Smyth
Tomorrow – Sunday 19th March – church bells in a number of churches in the United Dioceses of Cork, Cloyne and Ross (Church of Ireland) will ring out around the globe in solidarity with immigrants and refugees who are facing increasing racism and xenophobia throughout the world.
The ‘Joy Bells’ initiative started in Christ Church Cathedral, Waterford, and is the brainchild of Dean Maria Jansson.
Dean Jansson points out that bells can sound alarm but also solidarity. She said:
Bells are part of many cultures and religions, ringing out the old and ringing in the new. Their sound will herald joy not hate, welcome not exclusion, co–responsibility not exploitation. It is time for the Christian message of love to be proclaimed in solidarity with women and men terrified by the increased legitimising of hate that has emerged over the last months. We will ring out hate, xenophobia, exploitation and fear and ring in a call for solidarity, truth and justice.
St Fin Barre’s Cathedral (Cork), St Anne’s, Shandon (Cork), St Mary’s Church (Carrigaline), Abbeystrewry Parish Church (Skibbereen), St John the Baptist (Midleton), the Chapel of Kingston College (Mitchelstown), and Saint Anne (Castlemartyr) all in the United Dioceses of Cork, Cloyne and Ross, will be among the many Christian Churches across the world ringing their bells at 11am on March 19. The ringing will continue for 15 minutes while the gathered congregations pray in solidarity with all who are terrified by the growing acceptance of hatred and racism, increased fear and suspicion of ‘the other’ and all who are affected by deepening divisions in our world.