Hell’s Bells; The Knock Out Punch

I was an altar boy.

There were three different positions that defined us.

The taller guys were the Cross-Bearers. 

It’s meaning is obvious.

The pyro-maniacs were called Seriphers, which meant they handled the incense, gleefully ignited before every Mass.

Then there were the Acolytes, who carried the candles and rang the bells.

Each job was different, but we all ministered in a unique way on the Altar of God.

As Cross-Bearer I envied the Acolytes who got to ring the bells at the consecration of the Bread and Wine.

A curse word–“Hell’s Bells”–started circulating 100 years ago, but it has no real foundation in Scripture.

The bells that we altar boys ring do.

Exodus 28:35;

35 Aaron must wear it when he ministers. The sound of the bells will be heard when he enters the Holy Place before the LORD and when he comes out, so that he will not die.

In today’s readings (January 24, 2011) from Hebrews 9, Psalm 28 and Mark 3, we learn that there’s a connection between Christ– His sacrifice– and the music God wants us to make.

It teaches us that Satan fails if he’s divided.

That may explain how well-coordinated certain ideologies are with certain Caucuses.

The Altar boys we see at church do not seem powerful enough to stop Satan in his tracks, but they are.

I never bought into the line by the character Zuzu in the movie, It’s a Wonderful Life, where she says, “every time a bell rings an angel gets his wings.”

I do believe, every time bells ring at Mass, at the hand of a child, a fallen angel takes it on the chin.

Satan’s attacks are well focused at the Church, just read any AP article about how “hateful” we are.

If you’ve not been to Mass for a while, go; at least to hear the bells.

It’ll remind you of the victory we’re promised and the bell that’s rung when a fighter (in this case the Devil) is “knocked out.”


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