|St. Andrew's United Church in Westmeath, Ontario|
TORONTO, Ontario June 8, 2015 /Canada NewsWire/ - Canadians may wonder why they're hearing church bells ringing at 10:30 in the morning on Wednesday, June 10. Here's why.
The United Church of Canada is celebrating its 90th anniversary on that day. To mark the occasion, congregations have been invited to celebrate their presence in the community by ringing their church bells 90 times.
The time set for the bell ringing, 10:30 a.m., is the same in all time zones. This time was chosen because the inaugural service celebrating the formation of The United Church of Canada on June 10, 1925, began at 10:30 a.m.By coincidence, June 10 that year was also a Wednesday.
Moderator Gary Paterson has been an enthusiastic supporter of the idea—even starring in a short promotional video to encourage congregations to participate.
"Whether you're the only United Church in town with a lone church bell ringing, or in a community where it's possible for many church bells to ring in unison, let's make a joyful noise to the Lord on June 10," says Paterson in the video.
With more than 3,000 congregations in Canada, it's difficult to know how many churches will take part in the bell ringing. But dozens of congregations in communities from Bonavista, Newfoundland, to Chilliwack, British Columbia, have said they have special plans for the day.
St. Andrew's United Church in Westmeath, Ontario, has invited the town's elementary school to join them in the celebration. Children will take turns ringing the church bell. In downtown Toronto, Metropolitan United Church's carillon recital will include arrangements of hymns sung during the 1925 service. And because Lambeth United Church in London, Ontario, doesn't have any church bells, they're going to program all of their electronic devices to a traditional bell ringtone set to sound at 10:30 a.m. on June 10.
SOURCE United Church of Canada