From The New York Shitty Inbox: What’s Up At St. Anthony’s?
(Or: Where are the bells?)
A chap named Rich writes:
Hey Heather,I just wanted to write to let you know (if you haven’t noticed) that the charming St. Anthony’s bells have not been heard for about 3 weeks. I love the bells as I’m sure you do too so I took it upon myself to call the church to ask .. um.. why their bells are not functioning. The gent who answered had no idea the bells were not chiming. He said “that’s weird, I’ll tell father.” That was last week, and still, no bells. I just thought I’d apprise you of the sitch.
As it occasionally happens, Rich’s question got lost in the shuffle. No worries, another reader gave me a much needed reminder. A lady named Laura writes:
I heard (or rather, not heard) some sad neighborhood news today. Apparently, the hourly church bells that Greenpointers young and old have both loved and taken for granted — the ones that have rung loud and clear from St. Anthony’s church on Manhattan & Milton for years, are broken beyond repair and won’t ring again until the church can raise $10,000+ to fix them. I’m not sure when they stopped ringing, but as soon as I read the news in the church bulletin I realized that I hadn’t in fact heard them in a while.
Now, there are far more serious neighborhood issues going on but part of what makes Greenpoint great is it’s mix of new and old, and that church is a community center for Greenpoint’s Polish and Hispanic crowd. It would be a shame to never hear this rich piece of neighborhood history again.
The church is holding a raffle to raise the funds needed to repair the bells. It would be so great to see the greater community get involved…
Laura has promised to help me get in touch with the folks behind the aforementioned fund raising effect so I can pass along the details here. For the time being at least now we know why the bells aren’t ringing!
I have just gotten off the phone with a very nice lady named Christine. She has told me that this year’s raffle will be conducted solely for the purpose of getting these bad boys back in working order. Follows is the flier she was kind enough to send me.
UPDATE, 2:29 p.m.: the proprietor of Brooklyn11211 has proposed that some means of online fund-raising be put in place so as to provide a means for non-church members to make donations. I for one think this is a great idea and to this end and have reached out to Christine. She agrees that this is an excellent idea and hopes something— be it a PayPal account or Kickstarter page— can be erected for this purpose. If/when it is, dear readers, I will pass along the details here!
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