A charming group of change ringers from the United Kingdom visited the bell tower of Trinity Cathedral on April 17th to ring Trinity’s eight peal bells. The visitors numbered approximately 35 ringers, many of whom were from Yorkshire and Essex. They began a 2-week trip on April 2 to visit the bell towers of the southern United States where the art of change ringing is practiced. These included Hendersonville, North Carolina; Charleston, South Carolina; Atlanta, Georgia; Augusta, Georgia; Birmingham, Alabama; Sewanee, Tennessee; and Houston, Texas.
Miami was the final stop on the tour. All passersby who were interested were able to listen to the ringing of the bells from the garden outside Trinity’s bell tower from approximately 9:30-11:45 a.m. The ringing included a quarter peal which takes approximately 50 minutes to ring from start to finish.
A few members of the UK group were kind enough to join the local ringers on Tuesday to help them advance their skills at their weekly practice. It was our pleasure to host their visit and to share our lovely tower.
We had a really good ring Easter morning with Kemp and our two visiting ringers (from Christ Church, Eastbourne, East Sussex, UK ) making eight. Thanks to all who were able to attend.
Tuesday night we have 5 ringers signed up for Rob’s last practice night with us before he leaves to return to DC. We were thinking of celebrating his last evening with us for a while by maybe grabbing a bite after practice together.
Please join us if you’re able – Marguerite
What a treat to have 8 bells ringing for the second Sunday of February, Super Bowl Sunday, and such a thrill to have Barbara in the tower again! We stayed for the service and were delighted that our dearly beloved bell ringer “Canon Jim” was mentioned twice and that our soon to be dearly missed Bobbie was recognized as well. In addition, the Bell Ringers were mentioned in the “Trinity Cathedral 2017 Ministry Report” submitted by Robert Bannister, Bell Tower Captain.
Trinity Cathedral’s Patterson Memorial Bells are a ring of eight bells cast by the Whitechapel Bell Foundry in England and installed and dedicated in the Cathedral bell tower in 1984.
The Miami Guild of Change Ringers oversees the maintenance of the bells and practices the centuries-old art of change ringing. It is the local chapter of the North American Guild of Change Ringers and comprises volunteers who are members and friends of the Trinity Cathedral. Over the past year, bell ringing continued to summon visitors to the Cathedral’s 10 AM Sunday service and helped to celebrate the joy of weddings and special services at the Cathedral.
In just the last 12 months, the band welcomed visiting changed ringers from across the US, Canada, UK, Germany and Australia who supplemented the ranks of local ringers at service ringing and weekly practices. In addition, a band of change ringers on hand bells from Winter Haven FL led by experienced tower bell ringer Kemp Brinson, made monthly visits to Miami to support service ringing and learn to ring on Miami’s tower bells.
Ringers who are currently active in Miami include Rob Bannister, Dr Andrew Boulton, Bobbie Ibarra, Casey McClellan, Marguerite Merrill, Judy Paul, Pamela Pohling-Browne, Robert Stambaugh, Jody Vargas and Ken Whiting. Currently non-active ringers also include Canon James Nolan and Barbara Lawless.
The Miami Guild of Change Ringers is always looking for novice and experience ringers to join our ranks and is dedicated to teaching the art of change ringing to new recruits. Rob Bannister recently completed the Teaching Bell handling module of the Central Council of Church Bell Ringers endorsed training scheme offered by the Association of Ringing Teachers. Rob conducts training primarily in the winter months and is currently teaching new recruits.
Our trusted bell ringer, teacher and dear friend completed the marathon last weekend!
“Today was a most special day at the Cathedral as we were saying goodbye to Jim who is moving to Pittsburgh, Pa. It certainly was a bitter sweet experience as we know we will be missing Jim but at the same time we are wishing him well. He and I made a personal date to come back to Miami and ring with the band again many times! If you look very closely at the group photo you will find Judy, Marguerite and Rob. I, of course, was taking the photo :).” Bobbie
“Good afternoon Ringers, first let me thank all of you for the most enjoyable party we had last evening at Robert’s and JC’s! All of the food was so yummy in a lovely apartment. We even enjoyed Barbara’s company!!!!! I am so very grateful for all of the kind words Rob and others shared with me last night and I LOVE the CD!!!
It is I who am truly grateful for each of you. You have welcomed me, taught me, have been patient with me and have befriended me. So, I truly count my blessings for being able to learn a brand new challenging skill thanks to each of you. I promise you that we will ring together in the future!” Bobbie
Miami bell tower ringers get around! Kirkenes, is a small town in far northeastern Norway, close to the Finnish and Russian borders, known for its views of the Aurora Borealis – the Northern Lights.
“Homeward bound now, and fairly bouncy, as we’re out in the open ocean along Norway’s north coast. The pictures are of the fiord as we left Kirkenes and the water was freezing in places. The sun was already going down at 12.30 and reflecting pink off the snow. There’s an iceberg up ahead but you can’t easily make it out.” Pamela