Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. – Luke 2:11
Carol of the Bells is of Ukrainian origin. Did you know that this was originally a New Year’s Carol? These lyrics were written in 1936. Through the years this old tune has been given several different lyrics, but Carol of the Bells has been a Christmas classic since then.
It’s not quite Christmas without bells, is it? Obviously there are jingle bells, but in church we are more likely to hear a handbell choir. Some churches have bells that ring on a regular basis – but even so, when it’s Christmas, the ringing of the church bells has a special sort of meaning. It’s as though the bells are proclaiming, Christ is born! Come and worship the Lord! Let’s prepare our hearts, proclaim the good news and announce to everyone that hope was born in Bethlehem!
RING THE BELLS!!!
When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. – Luke 2:17-18
Did you know in Victorian times it was fashionable to go caroling with small handbells to play the tune of the carol? Sometimes they would just play the bells and not sing along. Each person in a handbell choir is vitally important. You are only responsible for one or two bells, but knowing when it’s your turn to play either of your bells is crucial. If you miss it – then… OOPS!
The bell’s rhythm and pitch indicate joy at Christmas and are symbolic of the harmony existing in the society. Bells act as a go-between from heaven to earth, between God and man. Sometimes new church bells get dedicated and even baptized before being used. I’ve never been to a bell baptism, have you? It’s quite a visual… I’m trying to imagine what that would be like. 🙂