Ringing the changes: St Patrick’s bells toll ahead of Mass
Wednesday 1 August 2018
Media and Communications Office
Melbournians were today greeted by the captivating sound of the St Patrick’s Cathedral bells.
The ringing is set to last for a rare, three-hour period and will finish at 6pm. The bells' soaring chimes mark the Cathedral’s final preparations as Archbishop Comensoli’s Installation Mass approaches. The Mass, beginning at 7pm on Wednesday 1 August, is expected to draw a sizeable congregation to welcome Melbourne’s new Archbishop.
The bell ringing team consists of an eight-strong and highly experienced group. They will attempt a full peal using a Grandsire Triples method, a particular style of change-ringing involving an odd number of bells.
Calvin Chai, one of the cathedral’s shop employees and an active bellringer, says the attempt is uncommon and hasn’t been endeavoured at St Patrick’s for over 15 years.
‘This is a momentous occasion,’ says Calvin, ‘but bellringers are human beings and anything can go wrong. Exhaustion or a wrong call could end the attempt and an extremely high level of concentration is needed.’