• Beginning this weekend and continuing every weekend through Easter, Montreal church bells will ring for 10 minutes to send a message of hope to city residents.
  • This initiative by the Catholic Church will join a number of others Montrealers have undertaken to show solidarity with their communities.

People and institutions across Montreal are finding ways to comfort each other during this time of crisis. Now, the Catholic Church is doing what it can "to send a message of hope to as many people as possible during the fight against this pandemic." For 10 minutes this weekend, Montreal church bells will all ring at once.

Archbishop Christian Lépine has asked all churches to participate every Sunday at noon through Easter, which this year falls on April 12 — the day before the planned end to the forced closure of all non-essential businesses in Quebec.

"Although church doors remain closed in response to preventive measures for COVID-19, the two Church leaders wanted to offer a symbolic gesture of support: to ring the bells of all churches," a statement explains.

"During this time of Lent, it is a way of demonstrating our solidarity and fraternity with individuals, families, especially the most vulnerable, the sick and their loved ones, and of recognizing the dedication of the health-care personnel and all those ensuring the security and wellbeing of our city," said the Archbishop.

"This ‘Crescendo of the Bells’ is a sign of hope and of solidarity, signalling that the Church stands with the people and the city once known as 'The City of a Hundred Bell Towers,'" he added.

The Crescendo will join a number of other initiatives Montrealers have undertaken to show solidarity with their neighbours and thanks to health care workers.

The rainbow drawing trend, for example, has city residents placing colourful sketches (and, sometimes, elaborate works of art) in their windows as a signal that everyone in their household is healthy and safe.

Others are flashing their house lights every evening to show silent appreciation for health care professionals.

There have also been numerous planned balcony concerts.

Private companies are stepping up, too.

Bauer Hockey has stopped making skates and started making medical masks.

Montreal-based company George Courey Inc., meanwhile, has multiplied its production of vital hospital equipment.

The first Crescendo of the Bells will take place on Sunday, March 29 at 12:00 p.m.

NOW WATCH A Montreal Company That Makes Hospital Supplies Is Hiring As Demand Skyrockets (VIDEO)

 
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