Ceremony of Lights — 4 November 2010
by Silver RavenWolf
Our Ceremony of Lights began three years ago as an event held here at the RavenWolf Hearthstone to commemorate the beloved dead of the spiritual community. Names and prayers are sent to us by e-mail, through my SRW bog, and posts by FaceBook friends during the month of October. A candle is placed for each prayer or name received in the weeks and days before the ceremony on the altar. At the appointed time, members of the Black Forest Clan join together in ceremony to honor these requests.
This year’s celebration was truly beautiful with hundreds of candles alight. Even though our Black Forest Samhain celebration fell the week before several circle members made an extra trip, some driving for two hours or more in heavy traffic, to ensure the success of our community offering. A special thank-you to all who participated!
We began by putting the finishing touches on the altar, which included the Lord and Lady candles, a misting cauldron, and a statue of dancing goddesses. Those present cast the circle together. With the intent of the ceremony spoken, we placed candles from the group members at the head of the altar along with murmured prayers for those they represented. Our attention turned to the hundreds of dark candles, and…in silence…Lord Shadow and Maiden, Samantha lit that amazing number of candles — one by one. As the last candle sprung to light several ouuu’s and ahhh’s circulated around the room. It truly was a beautiful sight!
Our ceremony continued with the Samhain ritual conjuration read from my Solitary Witch book, followed by each member sharing a specific memory of a deceased loved one. These were particularly poignant — one person remembered his grandfather teaching him how to fish, another spoke of his love for books shared by a family member, someone spoke of the last six months of her mother’s life and so on. Me? Argh! It would be food… I remembered my grandmother’s sticky buns that she made just for me on special holidays such as Thanksgiving and Yule.
Our group request from the dead centered on peace — for the spiritual community, for our daily lives, and for the world in general — that we focus more closely on harmony rather than strife. The ceremony ended with a blessing and the closing of the circle.
A big thank you to everyone who participated with their posts and prayers. The 2010 Ceremony of Lights was truly a beautiful event, and we were honored that you shared your love with us.