GOG 18th Samhain: "A Two-Day cycle of simple rituals in honor of our Ancestors: REMEMBERING FRIENDS & LOVED ONES"

Grove of the Other Gods performed two Samhain rituals, led a pumpkin parade down Easton Ave., and kept a vigil until dawn. 41 people total attended. 31 attended the Saturday evening rite, 19 stayed until dawn on the vigil, and 19 attended the Sunday afternoon rite. Both rituals were intense and emotional as the community tried to honor and remember those friends and family that we've lost in the past year and in years past. These were difficult rituals. The main invocation for both rituals was a reading from the grove's memorial book. A large Ancestors altar was set up outside and was filled with reminders of our beloved dead. There were smaller altars as well, for Psychopomps, Gods and Goddesses, Nature Spirits and Spirits of Place, Goddess Brigid, Manannan Mac Lir, the Earth Mother, Outsiders, and Sitala, Goddess of Diseases and Healing. Norma led both rituals, and there were powerful invocations by grove members. The similarity between the two Ancestors invocations (by Maria on Saturday and Maggie on Sunday) on the two days was uncanny.

The ritual omens (from the Graven Image Oracle--click here) are thus--
Saturday: (Deb) Sentinel (looking forward), (Hillary) Gate (light; its easier for the dead than for us), (Nora) Reflection and Sacrifice (reflection is a sacrifice but it keeps them alive and us alive), (Belladonna) The Vault (we mustn't lock up our emotions; hold them in memory in the vault of our hearts), (Mike) The Lily (in life there's death; in death, life...every loss is a gain), (Patty) Promise (this ties it all together: no matter how alone you feel, they are there; they promis us they are there.
Sunday: (Tricia) Sleeper, (Jen) Whear and Anchor, (Patty) Book, (Blue) Serenity. One overall interpretation: peaceful growing, keeping things close, peace and being comforted, record your memories, we're doing a good thing with the memory book.

The vigil was a busy one: our 4th annual pumpkin parade (thanks again, Maria!) a Kali pooja, a Spiritualist-style seance out of time in the hour that we turned back the clocks to Standard Time (thanks to all the dear departed who joined us at the seance.), a night-long bone-fire, fresh-baked bread, Turkish coffee (thanks Alex!) and pilgrimages to the altars, which disappeared at dawn quite like Brigadoon. After the Sunday ritual, a small fire was ignited from the bone-fire coals to burn a small Holly King in a ritual led by Pat and Maggie.

Thanks to Alex and Maria, our Kitchen Witches, and everyone who performed difficult invocations on both days, set up altars, brought food, helped clean up, and kept us all going all through the night. We are indeed blessed as a grove!


Norma, Druid in Charge of both rituals.
Alex, Kitchen Witch for Saturday and the Vigil