In November 2021, a friend invited us to see the installation of the church bells in Canet. In the cycle of church history, installing new bells (in Castellano, campanas) is an important event and can happen as rarely as once every 400 or so years. To commemorate the event, the church community gathered in the town square where the church is located.
How do you celebrate a new bell set installation, you ask?
Well, in this case, a number of people from the community and church make speeches, audience members sit in chairs, and the church's bell-ringer team gets ready for some physical maneuvering of these very large, very loud bells. All of the new bells were set up in an enclosure where the bell-ringer team got into position. There was also one rope that hung from the new bell enclosure up to the existing bell tower, because that lone "old" bell was part of the concert, too.
A church bell concert was not completely what I expected in this situation, but I was in for the adventure. I did not realize that the bells would be so very close and I assume that all of the bell-ringer team has some level of hearing loss, especially if they are used to being this close to the bells during other church events. These bells were also enormous, requiring a great deal of dexterity and caution to manipulate for an extended period of time.
I was happy to be an observer for this event, especially since this is something that tourists may never see. And my photo record is incomplete because the sun set during the event.
What a wonderful slice of Spanish life! Thank you for posting these.
So many of your posts make clear that the Spanish people take the time to acknowledge, celebrate, and affirm the continuity of community life. 400 years between bells 🙂