Our Coordinator, Cait presided throughout a delightful programme of events. The Sun had blazed down on Ireland for several days as a large gathering of members met with our guests and enjoyed some refreshments in the Café before the Solstice Celebrations began. The Castle arranges many events for visitors and there were plants for sale and tables outside to enjoy the sunshine. Nature’s incredible energy seemed to have culminated in a display of glorious abundance in the beautifully kept grounds. Indeed, a cascade of enchanting bluish-lilac roses tumbled down the wall beside the gate into the garden and begged us to stop and smell its gentle perfume as the happy and relaxed company finally set off in Procession.
It is the custom to sing our way in Procession down to Dana’s sacred Grove to invoke Her presence, then up to the Goddess Tara’s home in the Ancient Abbey; and yet, there was a sense of deep stillness behind it all at this balancing point of the year, and we were glad to invoke not only the Goddesses but also Lady Olivia who so loved these places. Her presence is still very much with us it seems from the reports of so many from far and wide who have experienced her continuing support in their lives, attesting to her words that we shall find, to our delight, having crossed over the barrier of death, that in truth we can do far more from there to help those we love. Finally approaching Persephone’s Gate, Her presence was invoked to prepare us to enter. The Temple of Isis awaited, its energy wonderfully renewed by the dedication of our members who have given generously of their time and devotion over the past few months to undertake a regular programme of step by step cleaning, replenishing and honouring the sacred energies so long cared for by Lady Olivia. This work will provide a foundation from which to continue her work into The New Aeon which she cared so passionately about. So many thanks to everyone who has taken part so far. We shall all have a chance to contribute in this way in support of Pamela, Olivia’s Great Niece who has worked tirelessly throughout. We cannot thank her enough.
At the Well we all gathered to invoke Deity and bestow the customary individual blessings from the Goddess. We were delighted to welcome two of our much-loved senior Priestesses who have not been able to come down for a while. This was followed by a powerful Oracle from the Un-Named One through Her Priestess. Though spoken in quiet tones there could be no doubting that we are each asked to listen for and respond to Her Voice in our everyday life, to stand for protecting our Planet and everything on it in justice for all, not just the fortunate few. We were then taken on an Inner walk in Nature by Eimear, passing on through a mist ‘between the worlds’ into a wooded clearing at the centre of which was a mighty Oak, and many wonders transpired and were reported later. It was good to hear new voices speaking of their sacred experience in a supportive space. Next we all joined in a lively Goddess chant led by Deirdre, and accompanied by sacred rattle. This was thoroughly enjoyed by all and provided an excellent atmosphere for our Solstice Mystery Play presented by Marian, “The Enlivening Rite of Aine and Dagdha” and enacted by her small band of players in the following roles: Ceridwen and Her Cauldron, The Irish Goddess Aine – As Summer Fairy Queen, The Irish God known as the Dagdha Mor; together with their two youthful assistants who volunteered their services on the day; The Summer Princess; the Hawk Prince her protector. Inspired by Ceridwen, the Goddess and God spoke on behalf of the true nature of ‘Femininity and Masculinity’ acting in harmony and cooperation. A beeswax candle was lighted and our young Summer Princess and Hawk Prince processed with it around the Temple in and amongst the assembled company before returning to share sweets with all to the lively strains of an Irish Jig which ended in general merriment. Proceedings drew to a close with the usual announcements of upcoming events, and included the success of one of our members at the recent Irish Council elections which she has been working towards for some time. Olivia knew of her work and had supported her wholeheartedly, as indeed she always did with each and every one of us who had set our hearts on a path of service to our communities in whatever way we felt drawn.
Short healing sessions were offered as is customary to those who wished to receive them. As ever it was a wonderful gathering at Foundation Centre to continue to celebrate the 8 Annual Festivals. We all thoroughly enjoyed meeting up for tea afterwards and catching up in excellent company.
Minette Quick (Hon. Sec. Circle of Brigid)