The 100-foot bell tower at the Church of the Transfiguration is home to a set of ten change-ringing bells, cast by the Whitechapel Bell Foundry in London, England. The bells ring out over the Community of Jesus and its environs in Orleans and Eastham, sounding forth the praises of God. The sculpture standing atop the bell tower is an angel, fashioned after the angels of the seven churches of the Book of Revelation. This “Angel of the Church” symbolizes the reality that the Lord and his angels watch over the worshiping Community and its church, and it challenges us to be witnesses of the celestial kingdom here on earth.
In keeping with the theme of the angel, seven of these bells are named for those churches in Asia to whom the letters were sent (Revelation 2 & 3) via their angels: Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamum, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia, and Laodicea. The other three bells are named for local churches and towns: Orleans, Eastham, and the Community of Jesus.
The bells rung after vespers on the day of the funeral, honored the death of Queen Elizabeth II by ringing “muffled bells” in accordance with the official protocol known as “Operation London Bridge.” Bells are only rung fully muffled after the death of a monarch. We join with others across the world, praying for eternal rest and perpetual light to shine upon this beloved queen, as she is welcomed home to her Lord￼.