Friday 15 December 2017

For whom the bells toll: ringing in the new and remembering the old

Cartoon 3112
Cartoon 3112
Martina Devlin

Martina Devlin

In 2017, I want not just to criticise but to admire occasionally. When something is worth appreciation, it ought to be recognised. Let me begin with the Angelus bell, which marks out a handful of quiet moments every day.

In this televisual age, we associate it most with the 6pm televised Angelus on RTÉ One. The one-minute interlude has been screened daily since 1962, and for those of us who grew up in Ireland, it is the soundscape to our lives - what a lot of Angelus bells we've heard rung.

I'd like to propose that the Angelus should be rung just one extra time every year, at midnight on New Year's Eve. That minute, which signals a period of reflection, seems an appropriate way to transition between the old year and the new - far more suitable than tuning in to a telly countdown involving a manic presenter and an excitement-whipped audience.

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