New Bern church rings bells to honor those who have died of COVID-19

New Bern

NEW BERN, N.C. (WNCT) — The U.S. now has more than 400,000 COVID deaths on the eve of President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration.

Churches across the state took time Tuesday to remember those who have lost their lives to COVID-19, including New Bern Christ Church.

Bells and candlelight honor 400,000 dead from COVID-19

“For me, 400,000 is such a monumental number,” said Paul Canady, rector of the church. “Just gut-wrenching, heart-wrenching to think about.”

The somber moment comes at an especially tough time when families can’t even gather to remember their loved ones.

“I’ve heard so many just gut-wrenching stories about families that have had to put off doing funerals,” he said.

Now, churches in Eastern North Carolina are taking time to honor and remember those who have died.

“Our bell will toll 40 times,” said Canady before the moment. “It will represent the over 400,000 lives lost to COVID-19.”

Each chime represents 10,000 people who’ve died. Canady is hopeful the bells will send a message to the community.

“Make that sacrifice to wear the mask and not have the gatherings I think will be an important milestone for all of us,” he said.

Canady hopes his church will have more memorials to honor those who’ve died and those who are on the frontlines of the pandemic.

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