“Prince Charles dedicated a new bell at Bayeux Cathedral in memory of a Carmelite nun murdered by the Nazis in 1942 while he was in France marking the 70th anniversary of D-Day.
St. Teresa Benedicta, martyr of the Holocaust, was gassed at Auschwitz, and proclaimed a Patron of Europe by Pope John Paul II in 1999.
The bell had been sponsored by HM the Queen who was represented by Prince Charles at the service. He was called upon by the Cardinal Archbishop of Paris to choose the name of the bell, representing peace and freedom and brotherhood amongst all peoples.
PEACE, FREEDOM AND BROTHERHOOD AMONGST ALL PEOPLES
The bell [did] peal out for the first time on 14th June, which in Carmelite tradition is the feast of Elisha, Old Testament successor to the Prophet Elijah, whose feast is 20th July, a key model in Carmelite spirituality and tradition.
Nine young people from America, Canada, Great Britain, Norway, Poland, Belgium, Holland, France and Germany took part in the ceremony. Bishop Nigel McCulloch, chaplain to the British Legion, said: ‘It was an iconic moment as the shared blessing of Reconciliation was given by Cardinal Archbishop Vingt Trois of Paris, the retired German Bishop Rainer Klug of Freiburg and myself,’ he said.
After asking His Royal Highness to name the bell the cardinal struck it twice – ‘which was quite a clang for those of us nearby!’ Bishop McCulloch commented.
Veteran James Aitken, aided by his grandson, a serving soldier with the Royal Artillery, then struck it once in memory of all those who had been killed in the D-Day landings. The cardinal blessed the bell as an act of reconciliation, sprinkling holy water over it, saying, ‘May Teresa Benedicta proclaim peace, freedom and brotherhood to the Glory of God and mankind.’
St Teresa Benedicta, whose original name was Edith Stein, first renounced her Jewish faith and then converted to Catholicism after reading the autobiography of Teresa of Avila, the Carmelite mystic.”
– This article was published in “The Catholic Universe” issue Friday 13th June, 2014. For subscriptions please visit http://www.thecatholicuniverse.com (external link).