San Luis Obispo, California Tribune
Saturday, November 24, 2001

Irene Matta, wife of the Rev. James Matta of the Holy Spirit Orthodox Christian Mission in Los Osos, previews the bells.

New, bronze Russian bells
to ring in the holy season

Los Osos— Members of the Descent of the Holy Spirit Orthodox Christian Mission of Los Osos will ring in the celebration of Christ's birth with three new bronze bells from Russia before the 6:30 p.m. Vespers service today and the 10 a.m. Sunday morning service.

Russian bells are cast for a specific tone. The process of casting bells in Russia has remained the same for centuries: a clay core is baked to the size of the bell to be cast; the core is coated with wzx, holes are drilled around trhe edge and the molten metal is poured between the outer core and the inner waxen cope. The clapper is then attached to the inside of the bell by a leather strap.


The bells are decorated with icons and inscribed in Cyrillic with the angelic prayer, "Holy, Holy, Holy."

Each Orthodox service begins with a rhythmically unique sounding of the bells. The peal of the bells progresses with each service.

Frank Freiler, a Los Osos craftsman, built a wooden structure with wheels to house the bells until they will be permanently placed in the courtyard of the Descent of the Holy Spirit Mission's new chapel to be built in the near future.

The bronze bells will be on display all week at the Branch House Boutique and Thrift Store, next to the chapel, Tuesday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The Descent of the Holy Spirit Orthodox Christian Mission is located at 2085 106h St. in Los Osos.