Priest in Italy Fined Because He Tolled Church Bells Too Much
For whom the bell tolls apparently isn’t for anyone in this town.
The priest in Florence, Italy, has had the residents outside the Santa Maria a Coverciano church up in arms for four years after they say he rings the church bells up to 200 times a day.
The townspeople claim that Fr. Leonardo Guerri rang the bells everyday between 8 in the morning until 9 p.m. and interferes with work, sleeping, and relaxation. The folks in town claim that he rings the bells more during the holidays, according to the Corriere Fiorentino newspaper.
Now, after years of feuding, the local municipality has fined the priest over $2,000, according to RTE.
The priest will still be able to ring the bells, but contingent on it being only during the gathering of Mass and the last service of the day at 6 p.m., RTE said.
The priest declined to comment when contacted by the AFP news agency.
This is not the first time a fine has been handed down to a priest in Europe's most Catholic nation for ringing the parish bells.
In 2008, one priest outside Florence was fined over $60,000 for excessive and loud bell-ringing after 13 years of local complaints, according to The Guardian.
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