Sunday, December 16, 2007

As we celebrate the Third Sunday in Advent, the tone of the season turns from one of waiting, to one of approach; and the closer we get to Bethlehem the sweeter the preparation for Christmas.

Today the Handbell Ringers with whom I associate every Monday evening, played in both churches that make up the Charge of our Parish. Last Sunday we played in the Roman Catholic Church. We plan our offering so that it is part of the Service, rather than a performance, and today I thought our offering was quite acceptable.

At one time our group consisted of twelve or thirteen experienced ringers, and we tackled fairly sophisticated music, but over the years we have lost ringers and then gained more wannabees (whom we welcome with open arms) Our present membership includes four new ringers, and as they learn so we simplify our repertoire to accommodate them. Nevertheless, bell music can be delicate and simple and still be pleasant and heart warming.

We are NOT the Raleigh Ringers. whose music and athletic dexterity we greatly admire. The music they are playing in the YouTube video below is Wizards of Winter, which seems to be very popular with Handbell Choirs of extreme musical virtuosity and also Christmas Light Shows - (some amazing visuals if you go googling). I hear the sleigh bells ringing and the sound of the horses hooves as they canter down a snowy lane.....

We are just a small group of ringers of all denominations who start to practice in the fall for Christmas performances in Churches and Care Facilities - good friends and lovers of music. And Christmas isn't Christmas until we've spread a little joy around and done our thing.....


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