Veterans Honored at Paganicon

Ceremony Begins

Ceremony Begins

Last Sunday, March fifteenth,  during the afternoon tea at the conclusion of Paganicon,  seven veterans who served in various branches of the armed forces were honored.  In a community ceremony of recognition and appreciation, Selena Fox presented the Pagan Military Service Ribbon to Pagans who have served or are serving in the US Armed Forces.

Honored Veterans, Selena Fox at left

Honored Veterans, Selena Fox at left

Pictured from top, clockwise are Wayne Sears, John Farrow, Herbert Cook Roy, Celeste Proe, Shawn Burns, Debbie Olson, and Tamia Finnegan. They received their pin to the applause of appreciation and support from the over hundred community members present.

 

The Ribbon pin, created by Circle Sanctuary in 2011, is being presented to Pagan veterans and troops around the country who request it. If you are a veteran please visit the ribbon website to participate in the honoring recognition.

Please congratulate these service members!

Nels Linde

Beloved High Priestess Passes – Mary Kay Lundmark

Mary Kay Lundmark

Mary Kay Lundmark

Mary Kay Lundmark passed over at age 52 on Thursday, February 19, 2015 in her home holding husband Patt’s hand, after a hard fought battle with cancer.

 

She was born November 26, 1962 the daughter of Claude and Janet (Thompson) Lundmark. She was a graduate of Virginia High School and St. Olaf College in Northfield. Mary Kay married Patrick Germer in St. Louis Park, MN in 1994. She grew up in Virginia and lived in Minneapolis prior to returning to Virginia in 2005.

Services will be held 4:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m., Thursday, February 26, 2015 in Virginia, MN

 

Husband, Patt has requested contributions to help cover extensive medical costs Mary Kay incurred be sent to patt@owlsfoot.net via Paypal. The need is dire.

With Husband Patt at Jay Cooke State Park

With Husband Patt at Jay Cooke State Park

Mary Kay Lundmark was a passionate reader and loved to go travelling and camping.She belonged to “The Honorable Order of American Co-Masonry”, and the “Sons of Norway”Haarfager Lodge #40.

Described as a most loyal and caring friend and priestess,  Mary Kay chose to avoid the lime light.  She took a major supportive role in many peoples craft and online spiritual paths, and was known to many who never met her in person.

Mary Kay Lundmark was raised in Virginia, Mn- up on the Iron Range- by a nice Scandinavian- Lutheran family. She was always a deeply religious person- and was very involved with Christian groups, Bible study, missionary trips, etc. up through her college years and into her mid- twenties.

At some point, she got deeply interested in Christian mysticism, which lead to study of ecstatic states, and eventually to the Craft. She was deeply intellectually curious about all things shamanic, traditional craft, historical craft, etc. Her first teachers were Gardnerian, and thus she stayed with the Gardnerian tradition for the rest of her life.

Mary Kay with Helga

Mary Kay with Helga

Mary Kay always had side studies in pre-monotheistic practices of many cultures: from Ancient Greek, to Old Welsh Folk Magic, to Ancient Peruvian and more. She had an astoundingly large personal library of books including all things psychic, shamanic, historical, tantric, Goddess and God related. Mary Kay had the largest collection of traditional Gardnerian and other British Traditional Craft Books of Shadows that I know of.

Mary Kay was also an extrovert who LOVED talking Craft to anyone and everyone she could meet. She ran several e-mail lists for different witch groups, and was active on most of the rest. Thus, the entire trad-craft community in the upper-Midwest came to rely on her as THE PERSON to contact with questions about Oath-bound materials, making connections with other witches in America or around the world, or clarifying a question about how certain practices are done, or who to ask next.

Mary Kay loved ritual more than just about anything else in this world. It was fun to circle with her- because she brought such joy and passion to the worship of our Gods. I have never met a person more fiercely in love with Craft than her. I feel her loss very deeply. I think she had a lot of very important things yet to contribute– and now those beautiful ideas and deep knowledge have gone with her.

Helga Hedgewalker –  Mary Kay and Patrick’s second female initiate, but still only one of many, many people proudly “down-line” from them in the lineage. Continue reading

Holiday Handfasting

PB1

Penny and Brian

This past Saturday, November 29th, Penny Mixhau and Brian McNee became handfasted at their home in Prescott, Wi.  Brian and Penny met almost 5 years ago when she was working at Bandana Chiropractic. Good friend (and wedding photographer) Kjersti Kronstedt worked behind the scenes to set them up. Not exactly on the same spiritual path,  they do share much, including common values and philosophies, a love of spiritual growth, art, history, travel, and offbeat movies.

Brian and Penny  host several events during the year at their home, including MayFest at Beltane, and an annual Turkey Free Thanksgiving, where they welcome Pagan friendly individuals from a wide variety of Pagan and other paths. This same mixture of long time Pagan friends, family relatives, and folk of open hearts gathered for this ceremony.
guests

A few Guests

Yeshe Rabbit Matthews

Yeshe Rabbit Matthews

The handfasting officiants were Yeshe Rabbit Matthews and Joe Schumacher. Nels Linde provided the music and props for the Abbots Bromley Horn Dance processional and Kjersti Mortenson Kronstedt of Mortenson Photography was the photographer.

lamb

Lamb Roasting

A  lamb for the following feast was a gift from Lou, Bob, and Otter. Alan Snow was the fire master. His helpers were Jude Kroutil and Jaimie Zaugg. 

Family

Family

 

Penny and Brian added:
“We are blessed with amazing friends. We had close to 30 helpers – kitchen witches, pyrotechnics, parking, concierge and facilities. The most beautiful rings I’ve ever seen were designed and crafted by Judy Olson and Nels Linde. We don’t have a final head count yet – my mom (who recently passed) usually did that. The unofficial number is somewhere in the neighborhood of 80.”

It was a really fine ceremony to experience and a joy to celebrate the happiness present in this union. The ritual was elegant and brief, yet allowing all present a chance to speak blessings to the couple. A bountiful feast and fireworks display culminated the days events.

 firewkiss

Follow the Moon: Astrology of intention and mindfulness

by Teri Parsley Starnes

Teri’s interest with astrology lies with helping people see how following a practice of intention and self-awareness leads to a fuller relationship with Mystery. Astrology is a wonderful tool for this. Her weekly column orients readers to the seasonal energy of
each month’s Sun sign in order to set magical/mindful intention for the lunar month beginning at the New Moon.

Each week Teri will write about the unfolding energies that support and challenge our intentions. The ebb and flow of the lunar cycle resides deep in our souls. Through following the phases of the Moon, we remember the natural cycles that guide us.

Continue reading

Seeker? – Get looking!

A seeker in religions is a person trying to see what they believe so they ‘seek’ out information on the different religions and eventually find what they are looking for. For those imbedded in Pagan community one  might  wonder who is looking?  We often forget there is a steady stream of people, young and old, who are looking for a meaningful expression of their spiritual beliefs outside of main stream religions.  Sometimes seekers are looking for help clarifying what they really do believe. Seeker classes serve an important function;  giving people new to Pagan experience an overview of what the Pagan world looks like and encompasses.

Fall is the season many of these classes start. Some classes may only be sponsored every few years by some groups  and locations. In an online world of many classes and opportunities there is still really no substitute for meeting in person with fellows on a similar level of investigation, with someone qualified to help guide you, and exploring the many paths of magic and Paganism. If you are a seeker, to find class opportunities you need to get on mail lists, talk to book stores, and get recommendations from those you trust.  When you find one, jump on it! If you know a tradition or path you are already interested in use the same resources and ask around. Many groups or covens have ongoing ways for new people to learn about them without an ongoing commitment.

Many of these classes have already started and may not take people at this time. always worth asking though. Starting tomorrow is:
Wicca 101   –  Location: Eye of Horus, 910 W Lake St, Minneapolis, MN 55408
October 16th (Thursday) 7-9pm ~ 13 Class Series 3rd Thursday Each Month, starting in October 2014
Learn the basics of Wicca from ethics and basic protection work to spellwork and ritual creation. We will cover energy work, use of herbs and stones, and more in this once a month class series. To finish out the course, participants will write and perform a final ritual. Everyone will also leave with resources to either continue a solitary path or find the coven that is right for them. Class is provided by Wellspring Coven from Minneapolis. 3rd Thursday of each month, starting October 16th, 2014. 
$65 Cost covers entire year – 13 month commitment required.

 
Seekers Classes The Coven of the Standing Stones regularly holds seeker classes and their next series is beginning
 in November at Magus Books. They will begin the first Friday in November and are offered free at 6.30pm.  Contact Magus Books or the Standing Stones to reserve a spot in the class.

 Grove Training   Stillwater (Minnesota) Gardnerian Coven is currently accepting students for our outer court training grove. Seekers interested in training and possible initiation in the Gardnerian Wiccan Tradition can find more information and contact info on our WitchVox listing, here: http://www.witchvox.com/vn/vn_detail/dt_gr.html?a=usmn&id=36698

These classes have already begun :

 Elements of Magic 101, Six Sessions in Six Months begins this Saturday, Sept 13th.   “All are welcome to join us. If you are new to Reclaiming and wish to be a more active participant in our practices and understandings this will be a very good way to learn the basics of our Tradition.  We will meet once a month over 6 months exploring, learning and deepening the foundational arts, magics, and practices of Reclaiming. Some of the topics that we will be looking at are; grounding, shielding, personal practice, shaping intentions, spell crafting, divination, ritual format and skills, prayer beads, labyrinths, the Seven Sacred Voices, nurturing our relationships with Mystery, altar building and an overview of Reclaiming’s history. We will also closely examine our one core document that informs everything that we do, The Principals of Unity. We will explore all of these topics and more, using the tools of conscious thought, trance journeying, discussion, rune and tarot work, song, chant, and other voice skills, and the mystery that we are bodies, and that all of the magical tools that we need our already a part of our beings.”


 

Since September the Wiccan Church of Minnesota ( WiCoM )has been doing a series of six seekers’ classes.  We meet every second and fourth Wednesday evening at a St. Paul restaurant that has a meeting room to rent.  The purpose of the class is to give students just a taste of what Wicca is about and some very basic information about other Pagan paths.  We also touch upon the history of Wicca, our church in particular, ethics, ritual, and energy work.  At the end of our classes it is hoped that students will know if Wicca is something they wish to pursue.  If it is, the class teachers and other church leaders help the students connect with appropriate teachers.  Unlike other seekers’ classes that encompass year-and-a-day training, WiCoM Seekers’ classes are intended to give students a familiarity with Wicca and then a connection to year-and-a-day training.

It is too late to join this round of WiCoM seekers classes.  We hope to have another round in the spring.  Folks can watch our Facebook page and website for an announcement about upcoming classes.

I found this Witchvox listing in Duluth, contact them for future classes:

When: Feb. 16th. 2014 – Jan. 18th. 2015
Where: Duluth, Minnesota

Seeker Classes offered by Silver Phoenix

Event Details: Silver Phoenix is offering seeker classes starting in Feb 2014 and ending in Jan 2015.

Our classes typically run for a year, and we have in person classes once a month as well as weekly projects and discussions online. New this year Song has built an interactive student website for the students to complement the classes.

Seeker classes are open to anyone interested in learning, and we do not require our students to become members either before or following the end of classes (though we do occasionally offer membership) . Our goal is to help our students find the place that is right for them, be it with us, another group, or as a solitary.


If you have information about new seeker class opportunities, please add them as a comment!

Nels Linde