We held our summer solstice rite in the quarry at High Cliff, where drum circles were held, once upon a time.
While, many in our local community travel to Pagan Spirit Gathering to celebrate the summer solstice, we still decided to hold our rite on the solstice to give those that remained behind an opportunity to celebrate locally.
Our grove held this rite under a Norse hearth, and on this day, the longest day of the year, we came together to honor Baldr. There was a larger turnout than expected, and with a good fire, our rite began. We gave offerings to our ancestors, to our gods and the spirits of this place. We held a sumbl, that was led by one of our community’s heathens.
We drank mead from three different artisan mead makers from the Fox Valley, and celebrated the longest day of the year in good company!
Malcom and Ronan – 2009
With a heavy heart, I inform the community that the father of one of our grove members has crossed the veil and now resides with the ancestors.
Malcolm McLay passed away on May 17th, 2014. He shall be sorely missed by his family and friends. May his memory comfort the lives of his family, and his ashes nurture new life in this world.
Kindred hear us,
Kindred be with us,
Kindred heed our call,
Malcolm Creel McLay has passed beyond this world,
A World War II veteran,
A deputy sheriff,
A husband and a father,
Let his name be spoken with honor,
Let his place with the ancestors be prepared,
Let him rejoin his family who passed before him,
A gregarious man,
A kind man,
An honest man,
Let the hearth fire be lit,
Let the stories of his life be told,
Let his memory never fade,
He flies free from the bonds of this world,
He joins the ranks of our ancestors,
His circle is complete
There has been a change of location for tonight’s meeting. Instead of being at Dale’s house, it will be at Harmony Cafe, Appleton. Most likely in the downstairs common area.
I apologize for the late notice and hope to see you there.
Another high day has passed for our grove. This one marks our 6th month anniversary, as Samhain of last year was our first public ritual.
Beltane is the Celtic fire festival which divides winter from summer. It was a time the livestock would be herded between a pair of sacred bonfires to rid them of diseases they may have contracted over the close winter confinement. It was a time when the hearth fires would be extinguished and then relit from the sacred bonfires.
Our modern rite was necessarily different, as we are not pastoralists and don’t share our houses with livestock. We didn’t have a pair of bonfires, though that would be a great idea for a future Beltane. Instead, we honored the Kindred, and acknowledged the beginning of the Celtic summer. We focused on the purification aspect of this holiday, in particular that of the storms that come to wash away the corruption of winter. We honored the Celtic god Taranis, who is master of thunder and storms. We acknowledged his role in this season as the bringer of storms; storms that clear the detritus left by winter; rains that slack the thirst of the land; and lightning that nourishes the plants through nitrogen fixation.
Mary drew and interpreted the oracle for this high-day.
Outside influences that have been negatively impacting the protogrove are being released. We need to continue to be guided by our inner voice and conscience and our future will be bountiful.
May your Beltane be bright and joyous!
Maslenitsa is one of the Slavic pagan festivals that occurs around the spring equinox. It’s purpose is two fold, to welcome in the beginning of spring and to say farewell to winter. We gathered together to welcome in the new season and honor the gods and goddesses responsible for this change.
We welcomed in spring by honoring the slavic sun god, Dažbog, who will be spending longer days in the sky, warming the earn and uplifting our spirits. To the winter goddess, Morana, we made offerings to support her on her journey to the underworld to rest until next winter. We made a straw effigy of Morana, who was placed on pine boughs. Beside her we laid bread, salt and honey. She was then placed in the fire; a gentle nudge to tell her that winter has passed and her place is no longer in our world.
Our oracle read the cards for both individuals and the protogrove. The blessings on the protogrove were particularly auspicious as they affirmed our mission. We are The Rebel, the new kid on the block, both as a protogrove, but also since ADF has a formal history shorter than both Wicca and OBOD, which each have representatives our local community. Being new, we have a large number of Possibilities open to us, the ability to attract those who are looking for change, and to learn from those who have been through this before. We have the opportunity to help enact positive Change in our community.
With the coming of spring and the blossoming of the earth, may our members, and our community at large, also blossom.
Yesterday was our Imbolc celebration. It was filled with good friends, fellowship and food.
We would like to thank those who came out to celebrate with us. Including the unexpected pleasure of having a few members of the local OBOD Seed Group attend.
Have a blessed Imbolc!
Our January discussion group meeting was rescheduled to next week Monday (January 13th) since the cold weather caused our venue to close early.
We apologize for the inconvenience and hope to see you all there.
Winter Solstice Altar
Yesterday we had our Slavic Winter Solstice rite to honor the Kindred. The Slavic pagans and early Slavic Christians saw the Winter Solstice as a time when the world was closest to the underworld and had similar traditions as the Celtic Samhain, but mixed in with customary Yule traditions. One such merging of traditions was that people would dress up in animal costumes, but go door to door caroling for sweets.
We honored Svarog in his capacity as the progenitor of the Slavic kin, Morana as the goddess of winter and Dažbog as the sun god who will be spending more time with us as the days lengthen.
Winter Solstice Oracle
Our oracle from the Kindred, when asked what blessings they have bestowed upon us, was as follows:
Ancestors: Wisdom (Ash)
Nature Spirits: Attraction (Honeysuckle)
Gods and Goddesses: Intuition (Willow)
In this season we can attract good or ill to ourselves. We must use our wisdom and intuition guide ourselves and what we attract.
Ancestor Candle Holder and Cauldron
We would like to thank to all those who were able to attend and contribute to the rite.
May the light of the sun shine down upon you all, and bring joy in this time of long nights. Have a Happy Solstice!
A fire roaring, a cauldron of water, and an oak grove filled with people.
Invocations made, kindred invited, ancestors remembered.
The Red Lady called, sacrifices made, blessings given.
As one people we honored our gods, our dead and the nature spirits of our world.
The Protogrove of the Whispering Spirits held our first public rite on November 2nd at Deeply Rooted. We honor the kindred, who are the gods, the dead and the nature spirits. We honor them through our words, our actions and tangible offerings, and they bestow their blessings on us.
We celebrate Samhain as the gateway to winter, the time when the vale between this world and the world of the ancestors is thin. Alone, or as a group, we open the gates between the worlds and allow our worship to ripple through the gates to the kindred. This Samhain we offered to the kindreds; an apple, milk and honey, bread, hard cider, and brandy. To The Mórrígan, who was specifically invited to our rite, we offered her a quartz crystal, a black feather and whiskey.
May the blessings of the gods be with you!
On October 31st, the Protogrove of the Whispering Spirits has been officially recognized as a protogrove of Ár nDraíocht Féin: A Druid Fellowship.
The protogrove is located in Appleton, Wisconsin. Over the next couple weeks we will be deciding what our public activities will be, and publishing them on this web site.