We are fortunate at the Cathedral to have the only change-ringing bell tower at a Roman Catholic Cathedral in the United States. The tower, with eight bells cast by the Whitechapel foundry in England (the same foundry that cast the Liberty Bell and “Big Ben”), was donated by Mrs. Anna Catharine Grace, a benefactor of many parish and diocesan liturgical and musical initiatives, such as the Cathedral pipe organ which bears her name. The bells are named after relatives and friends of Mrs. Grace. Unlike a carillon (which is a keyboard instrument with many bells that may be played almost like a piano), change ringing bells are fewer in number but rung through “changes” or patterns that are either pre-determined or called out by a leader. This art takes great skill and commitment, but is tremendously rewarding…and great exercise! For more information, visit the North American Guild of Change Ringers, or contact our tower captain, Ted Clark.
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