Q: Would you comment on the use of altar bells during the Eucharistic Prayer? I know it is provided as an option in the GIRM. What pastoral considerations would one consider? (As an aside my pastor raved about your recent presentation on the RCIA.)
A: Thanks for your comments about my presentation.
I treat the bells in paragraph 572 of my book, Let Us Pray. There I basically argue that the need for bells has passed because the priest faces the people, prays the prayer aloud, and uses the vernacular. However, many people like the bells for devotional purposes, and they are permitted. Incidentally, if bells are rung, it should be one ring, not three. The rubric changed in 1969, but many churches are still incorrectly using three rings.