Saturday, March 29, 2008



Langley, B.C.-- What does the modern commitment to recycling have to do with the ancient faith of the Orthodox Christian Church ? Bells!

Sunday, April 6 at 10:00 A.M. , the Orthodox Church of St. Herman of Alaska in Langley invites the press and public to attend the blessing of their six newly-created bells—which began life as oxygen cylinders. Air Liquide donated the empty cylinders of high quality steel, which produces a beautiful sound. Deacon Kurt Jordan and musician Dan Steenburgh and their helpers cut the bottoms, ground the cylinders to the proper size to produce the proper tone for each bell, sand-blasted them clean and painted them. Now there are six less cylinders as potential land-fill and six more instruments to beautify the world with music and proclaim the glory of God.

In the rite of blessing, each bell is sprinkled with Holy Water, anointed with Holy Chrism (blessed oil) and named. In this case, the bells are each named for different saints of Alaska who brought the Orthodox Faith to North America—one of whom is St. Herman himself, the patron of the parish.

The bells will be rung before each Sunday Liturgy to summon the faithful to worship, and on Pascha, to announce the Resurrection of Christ. (Orthodox Pascha—or Easter—is on Sunday April 27 this year.)

The Church is on the corner of 72 Avenue and 198B Street. The bells and their enclosure adjoin the church and will be sounded every Sunday at 10.00 am.

PHOTOS added Sunday Mar. 30: Dan testing sound, Deacon Kurt & Dan discussing bells.


matushkadonna said...'t suppose anyone got photos of the bell-making process, did they?

RW said...

this is fantastic. we will get some photos tomorrow and send this press release to the local papers.

Simply Victoria said...

nope. didn't even think of it.
of course, I wasn't there.

matushkadonna said...

I took a couple of Dan testing the bells today, but I'm sure we can get better from Vic.

Apparently Edith G. knows somebody at one of the papers?

Anyway, we have the letterhead here, so I can print them out for snail mail as well as sending them by e-mail.

matushkadonna said...

Hey. I almost hate to say this, but does anyone think this sounds like a Mike McCardell story? Which station is he with,again? I mean, you don't get the action and sound of the bells out of a newspaper article, do you?

elizabeth said...

may these bells serve St. Herman's for many many years!

RW said...

M.Donna -let's quickly chat on Sunday. I think Mike M is with Global... - that is a great idea.

matushkadonna said...

Um. Missed chatting today! (why is it there's always so much going on at church? ;-)

you're right, it's global, but I couldn't find any direct contact info for Mike McCardell.

Mark said...

Thanks to the parish of St. Herman of Alaska Orthodox Church for posting this quite interesting way to add bells while recycling used industrial implements. I will propose a similar effort at my parish.

Mark C. Phinney
St. Mark Orthodox Church (OCA)
Bethesda, Maryland, USA