I was asked to host a Beltane ritual at the Unitarian Universalist church I attend shortly after the normal service this past Sunday. Leading up to the ritual, I was so thrilled simply to have the opportunity to provide ritual to the congregation in a very public setting. Mostly I was excited to share my faith with others and to show them what Paganism is about.
This ritual was very similar to the one performed on Sunday that I wrote about here, with some small tweaks. I added a final offering after the participant offerings to provide a climax to the ritual. We also had everyone kneel down and touch the Earth Mother as we called Her to ritual. We also asked the children attending to wave their faery wands they had made earlier to help us call them.
In my opinion, the ritual went very well–much better than the one on Friday. The larger number of participants (about 7) probably helped things. I also feel that the final offering provided a much needed “high point” to the ritual. Almost everyone after the ritual said they enjoyed it and thanked me for it.
The picture of the Omen won’t post correctly, so I will simply write about it here.
The first rune I drew was Kenaz, torch. I see this rune as a rune of transformation and purification. The second rune I drew was Berkano, birch. Berkano is symbolic of the Earth Mother and new beginnings. The last rune drawn was Sowilo, sun and strength. All in all, this is a very positive Omen that points to the warmth of the Sun, reverence of the Earth Mother, and a new beginning due to some transformation.
I am so glad I was able to give my church family a glimpse of my world. I hope I have blessed them as much as I feel they have blessed me.
Today I hosted a Beltane ritual with my husband for a new friend and our roommate. Beltane is a celebration of fertility, but we chose to celebrate the Faeries since kids were originally planned to be present. (They couldn’t make it.) Here is a picture of our altar after the ritual; I forgot to take a picture before:
I am in love with this fabric; it is simply perfect for Beltane. It is also silky and floaty, which the picture doesn’t convey–perfect for honoring the Faeries.
To begin, I said words to open the ritual and create sacred space, offering some thyme mixed with lavender to the fire. Our guest said the prayer for honoring the Earth Mother and made an offering of bread. I then called the Ancestors and tossed some mugwort into the flames. Our guest called the Nature Spirits (offering thyme and lavender) and Deities–my husband poured some wine into the fire for their offering. I honored the fairies with fruit & nut trail mix.
After personal praise offerings, I took an Omen for the ritual asking what blessings were offered to us.
The rune on the left is Ingwaz, a rune of fertility–perfect for Beltane. In the middle is Hagalaz, hail; I see it as transformative from harm to healing. Finally we have Sowilo, sun and strength. All in all, this is a very positive Omen for Beltane!
I called for a blessing into a bowl of water and sprinkled everyone with it, including myself. We then thanked everyone we had called in reverse order, returned to ordinary space, and ended the ritual.
I will elaborate more on the ritual script on Sunday, after I perform it for the congregation at the Unitarian Universalist church I attend. I prefer to keep the script private until then to have more of an impact on attendees.
The ritual was simple but beautiful. I enjoyed it, and I look forward to performing it for my church.
May 1 is usually celebrated among Pagans as Beltane, a festival of fertility and whimsy. Now is the time to acknowledge the life and fertility all around us in Nature, like flowers blooming and animals nesting.
I acknowledged this High Day by pouring offerings of coffee outside to the Ancestors, Nature Spirits, and Shining Ones. Next week my fiance and I will celebrate with a formal ritual.
May all areas of your life be in bloom!