Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Summer Solstice Festival at Temple of Isis, Clonegal Castle

Garden Shrine of Persephone, created by Olivia's great niece Pamela Currey

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Just over two weeks ago Lady Olivia fell in the grounds of the Castle and unfortunately suffered a fracture to one of her ankles.  She has been in hospital since, however, she is making an excellent recovery and is in good spirits and general health.  All she needs is time to recuperate fully and as our Summer Solstice Festival was coming up very shortly, she sensibly decided to invite the Circle of Brigid, together with the Druid Clan of Dana and Noble Order of Tara to facilitate the Ceremonies with her full support in spirit but not in person for the very first time for us.

Many members of our priesthood have been visiting her over her period in hospital and you will no doubt be aware that she has sent out a number of important messages to the Fellowship, very much facilitated by Marian Smiles who lives in Waterford and has been with her practically every day.  She has our great thanks and appreciation.

We had a lovely day for the Festival, and after gathering briefly at the start in the Theatre we processed, drumming and singing, (many thanks to Eimear & Sara Nolan) down to the magnificent grove of Californian Redwoods which now tower high overhead, but which Olivia remembers her father planting when she was a small girl!  Invocations were given by David de Roeck and Eimear Burke and other members of DCD.  This Druid Grove is the original spiritual home of the Druid Clan of Dana worldwide.

Following this we processed back up towards the Castle past the ancient yew walk, up over the well manicured lawns and lovely fountain, up the steep steps to the ruined remains of the Abbey which is at right-angles to the front of the Castle and is beautifully secluded with greenery and flowers clambering over and round the remaining walls. The original altar stands before a high pointed window, long open to the skies and a perfect place to honour the Goddess Tara, the spiritual home of the Fellowship's Noble Order of Tara. Here David de Roeck, Sean McCabe and members of the Noble Order invoked Deity.

We then proceeded to the beautiful, newly created Garden Shrine of Persephone beside the Garden Entrance to the Temple.  Here Maureen Sullivan invoked Persephone, Queen of Hades, Poet of Elysium, Goddess of Olympus with the apples, and thanks was given to Pamela Currey, Lady Olivia's Great Niece, for her work in creating this delightful Shrine.

In the Temple it is traditional to gather at Brigid's Well, the Well of Truth, and it was Lady Olivia's wish that I, Minette, should represent her at the Well where I felt inspired to read out her recent Message which appeared on all global sites speaking of the Sacred Places at Foundation Centre and her Vision in 1945 that it was to be a Centre of Light for Ireland and the World through the Fellowship of Isis.  Invocations were made by the Priesthood and Blessings of the Goddess given to everyone attending with water drawn from The Well of Truth, The Holy Grail.  These Blessings have always traditionally be given by priestesses.

At the High Altar of Isis a Priestess in trance awaited, and after everyone had quietly assembled we received a powerful Oracle from Isis from Maureen Sullivan.  Marian Smiles & David de Roeck presided over the following ceremonies which included the traditional Midsummer Marriage ritual and Ordination of a new Priestess, Angela Lordan whom we all welcome to our company.

The ceremonies ended with the usual notices and regular members, were asked to let the Hon.Sec.Circle of Brigid know by email, text or phone, that they intend to attend our next Festival (date announced at the meeting) so that catering numbers can be known more accurately in future for our popular teas in the Village after ceremonies.  It was suggested that they look up the email address under FAQ's for visits and invitations to Festivals at the Castle on the global sites.

We concluded with various members of the priesthood offering short healings and consultations afterwards in the Temple.  We then repaired for tea to the Village and enjoyed sharing artwork brought this time by Pamela Currey and Minette Quick.  Members are invited to bring along anything they would like to share in future, poetry, artwork and so on.  Minette had already read out the poem given her by the Fairies of the Shining Web of the Fairy Tree Grove near her home, 'Come with me to the Enchanted Land'.

Marian Smiles at High Altar

Marian Smiles at High Altar, Maureen Sullivan (veiled) acting as Oracular Priestess.

Eimear Burke (left), Maureen Sullivan, Marian Smiles and Angela

Photos courtesy of Marian Smiles, taken by Sean McCabe. Account of festival courtesy of Minette Quick.