Imbolc 2019—Public Paganism

Paganism in general is not evangelical, and Black Bear Grove (BBG) certainly is not, but we do advertise our rituals on Facebook and our web page, and sometimes post flyers for our rituals because all Black Bear Grove High Day Rituals are open to the public. Why do we do this?

It is the vision of Ár nDraíocht Féin: A Druid Fellowship (ADF) “that the Gods and Spirits are served in the modern world through public temple worship with a skilled priesthood.” Black Bear Grove has no ordained clergy, but we do provide public opportunity for worship, support in your Pagan path, and fellowship with like-minded people. ADF has a clergy program and provides training programs to grow in your spiritual path.

One of our most attended rituals of our Sacred Wheel of the Year has been Imbolc. In February. Our rituals are always outdoors, so that is significant. Why is this so? In this case, it is because for the past three years we had a class from Indiana University attend the ritual. Our greatest attendance was at Imbolc 2016, our 100th ritual, which the IU class attended along with some BBG alums and friends of the Grove.

“One of the most fundamental functions of ADF as an organization is to give members a network to share their own religious practices with other members and thereby enrich their own spirituality.”

The internet is a wonderful tool for creating a spiritual community, especially a Pagan one, as sometimes we are few and far between, but, for some, it doesn’t compare to hands-on, in-person ritual. Pouring a libation of whiskey on a fire while invoking your Gods and Goddesses with the support of those around you can be very powerful. Our rituals are available to everyone regardless of their spiritual path who wishes to honor the Ancestors, Nature Spirits, and Deities and our community with respect. So, whether you just want to show up for Beltane and Samhain or join and contribute to our community, know that while you are at a Black Bear Grove ritual, you are part of the Grove.

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