Historic Bell Stolen from St Mary’s Cathedral in San Francisco

The Christian Post reports:

This past Sunday parishioners at the Cathedral of St. Mary of the Assumption in San Francisco discovered a big part of their church history was missing when they left 11 a.m. mass.

 A 5,300-pound church bell, mounted on a concrete slab in the garden area, had disappeared and no one could remember when it was last seen.

“We cannot replace this historic and valuable item,” said George Wesolek, director of Communications and Public Policy for the Archdiocese of San Francisco, in a recent release. “Hopefully, the police will recover it, and we can put it back in its rightful place as a memory of the Catholic Church of San Francisco.”

The theft is still under investigation, and Police Inspector Brian Danker told The Christian Post Tuesday the incident isn’t something to be taken lightly. He said people are “stealing brass railings, copper gutters, chalices from churches, bells, whatever they can chop up and take to recycling yards that take brass and copper.” Not just gold and silver, but also industrial metals, have skyrocketed in price over the past few years.

He called thieves like this “metal monsters.” They typically target homes under construction with copper wirings. If they can get away with it, the price is good. The estimated replacement value for the bell is $75,000…

More here.


Bible Archaeology

Archaeologists Discover High Priest’s Bell?

Archaeologists have discovered a rare gold bell during an excavation in the City of David National Park in Jerusalem.

Arutz Sheva, Israel National News, has the report:

Archaeologists have discovered a rare gold bell with a small loop at its end. The finding was made during an archaeological excavation in the City of David National Park (near the walls of the Old City of Jerusalem) by the Israel Antiquities Authority in cooperation with the Israel Nature and Parks Authority and the Ir David Foundation.

The directors of the excavation on behalf of the Antiquities Authority, archaeologists Eli Shukron and Professor Ronny Reich of Haifa University, said after the finding, “The bell looked as if it was sewn on the garment worn by a man of high authority in Jerusalem at the end of the Second Temple period.

“The bell was exposed in the city’s main drainage channel of that period, between the layers of dirt that had been piled on the floor of the channel,” they continued. “This drainage channel was built and hewn west to the Western Wall of the Temple Mount and drained the rainfall in the different parts of the city, through the City of David and the Shiloah Pool to the Kidron valley.”

The excavation area, above the drain, is located in the main street of Jerusalem which rose from the Shiloah Pool in the City of David. In this street an interchange was built through which people entered the Temple Mount. The remains of this interchange are what is known today as Robinson’s Arch. Archaeologists believe that the eminent man walked the streets of Jerusalem in the area of Robinson’s Arch and lost the golden bell which fell off his outfit into the drain beneath the street.

Jewish sources say that the high priests who served in the Holy Temple in Jerusalem used to hang golden bells on the edges of their coats. The book of Exodus (Shemot), for example, contains a description of the coat of Aaron the high priest in which it is said that coat contains, “bells of gold.”

While it is unknown if the bell belonged to one of the high priests, archaeologists have not ruled out the possibility.


And now you can listen to the sound of the bell: