By Faithful Friar
As you may have read, seen or heard, the CJ Ringers hosted a day of ringing this past Saturday, and we were thrilled to have expert ringers join us from various towers around the globe. We had many from England, and some from as far away as Australia, along with our Boston friends, and others nearby. Two of our ringers joined a full peal of Grandsire Caters in the morning which is 3+ hrs long! In the afternoon about 40 of us gathered around and in the tower.
Under the beautiful summer sun, the young people could sit on the common, play, chat, enjoy the sun and even sneak away to the beach for a quick swim while the bells continually rang. Benches were set around the tower for the older crowd looking for a bit of shade. Old and young came and went from the tower when the bells stopped, and when we gathered for a new method or exercise we wanted to ring. Fun drinks and snacks helped keep us all going.
We elected a leader who ran the time so everyone had a chance to ring and learn, no matter whether a beginner or an advanced ringer. For new ringers, the better the band, the better for you! The more experienced ringers always had us stand behind them and taught us by having us watch them; or they stood behind us giving clear instructions whispered in our ears along with helpful tips to improve our ringing.
What I love about ringing with the experts is their open willing hearts to pass on what they know with enthusiasm and love of the art. They show pure joy in the art of ringing and mentor with inspiration. A helpful smile or nod comes our way when we are supposed to be ringing ahead or behind them. Many advanced ringers have been ringing since they were children so it’s “in their blood”. They know the pitfalls and have helped many a novice gain confidence. It reminds me of Benedict’s “school of love.” We couldn’t be more fortunate having our new friends share their love of ringing. We are a blessed tower and a blessed people.