Baptising of the Bell of St Joseph’s, Dundee (1874)


Dundee Courier
Tuesday, 15 December 1874

The ceremony of baptising the bell was celebrated , in St Joseph’s Roman Catholic Church, Dundee, on Sunday evening. The ceremony was preceded by a sermon by Father Bertrand, a friar of the Order of St Francis, who explained what place a blessed bell had in the Roman Catholic worship.

The sermon was very impressive, and was listened to very attentively by the large audience. The bell was then solemnly blessed by Bishop Strain of Edinburgh, who was assisted by the Rev. Father Holder, St Mary’s, Dundee, and Rev. Father Crumley, the Rev. Father Butti officiating as master of ceremonies.

The ceremony consisted in blessing the water with which the bell was to be washed, after which some of the Psalms of David were recited by the clergy and the choir. After the recitation of the Psalms, Bishop Strain anointed the bell with the holy oils used in the Church in solemn consecrations. Incense, myrrh, and thyme were then burned under the bell. The next part of the ceremony consisted in Father Holder, who was officiating as deacon, singing the Gospel, after which the Bishop made the sign of the cross over the bell, and the ceremony terminated. The choir was under the leadership of Rev. Mr M’Guinnes.

We believe the ceremony is the first of the kind performed in Dundee since the Reformation.