Bell ringing
 


According to a widely-held belief the Angel Gabriel brought his news to the Virgin Mary at 6:00 in the evening.  From this favorite belief developed the custom of ringing the "six-o'clock bells" on the Annunciation and eventually on every day of the year in memory of the moment Christ took on human flesh at his conception.

Later the bells came to be rung three times a day, at six o'clock in the morning and at noon as well as at six in the evening. And the Angelus prayer came to be recited at each bell ringing. Three times a day people stopped their work wherever they happened to be and knelt in the street or in the fields to recite the prayer in memory of the moment of Christ  entered the world.

Some churches such as Saint Bede's Catholic Church in Williamsburg, Virginia still ring the Angelus three times a day. But even when no Angelus bells ring in their vicinity, many people nevertheless pause in their homes or place of work to recite the Angelus prayer.