“Well known Pagan publisher, podcaster, teacher and Cunningman Peter Paddon suffered a serious heart attack on Monday. He was admitted to a local hospital in Los Angeles and underwent a successful surgical procedure but is still in critical condition in the CICU. His wife Linda and members of his tradition request prayers and healing from the Pagan community to help speed his recovery.”
As the release notes Paddon is still in critical condition, and prayers for his recovery are appreciated. We will keep you updated on further developments, and would like add our voice to those hoping for his quick and speedy recovery. For those wanting to learn more about Paddon and his work, please visit his official blog.
Pagan Community Notes is a companion to my usual Pagan News of Note, a series more focused on news originating from within the Pagan community. I want to reinforce the idea that what happens to and within our organizations, groups, and events is news, and news-worthy. My hope is that more individuals, especially those working within Pagan organizations, get into the habit of sharing their news with the world. So lets get started!
Pagan Japan Relief Project Reaches Finish Line: The initiative started by Peter Dybing for the Pagan community to raise 30,000 dollars for Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières has almost reached its conclusion! As of this writing, there is less than 1,400 dollars left to raise, and the hope is that this goal will be reached by the end of the weekend.
“When disaster strikes, it means that the Earth is finding Her own balance. But it is our job to feel compassion, lend aid, and support our fellow creatures that they may survive this terrible time and regain wholeness. And while we do this, let us also remember that it is this life that matters – the next will take care of itself. So as we come to the aid of our fellow beings on Mother Earth, let us live as though each day is our last, and let every day be a blessing.” - Rev. Kirk Thomas ADF Archdruid
“There are two ways you can take a talk about Paganism and the future. One is what is going to be the future of Paganism, the other is how is Paganism going to deal with the broader future, that is breathing down our necks at this point. I will be talking about both. We are moving into a future that a lot of people are going to find very challenging, especially if they have bought into the attitude, that “Our ancestors were stupid. We are smart, and we are going to go zooming off to the stars. We know the truth, and no one else has ever done so.”
Stay tuned to PNC-Minnesota for more updates from the conference.
“Our Pagan Heart is an independent film, being shot over the course of a year. It follows a village outside of time (neither truly Norse nor quite Mad Max) over the nine sabbats followed by my Druid group. We added the ritual for Fallen Warriors at Remebrance Day (Veterans Day) because so many of us are military, ex-military or base rats. Each 10-12 minute episode not only tries to show the reason for the sabbat, but also to explore one of the nine virtues of Celtic-Norse tradition.
As the villagers face challenges ranging from the death of their only healer, to a radical change in leadership and the resulting change in priorities, we see the heart of our faith. What does it mean to live these virtues, these beliefs, the result of believing in ever-present, personally committed Gods who touch every aspect of your life. There are real struggles for meaning, real questioning of their faith in the face of devastating loss.”
“This week I joined a group of my fellow musicians to create a music video in support of the protesters in Madison, Wisconsin. The song, “Madison”, was written by my friend Mark Vickness of Glass House, and spoken word artist PC Munoz. It was produced start to finish at EMB Studios, the studio Winter and I share with Paul Nordin. I was proud and honored to be a part of this project and thought I’d share it with you all here. Enjoy and may it bring you hope and good cheer!”
Thanks to Sharon for sharing this with the Pagan community. For more on Pagan participation in the Wisconsin labor protests, click here.
“Ed Francis is doing better & has begun speech, physical, and occupational rehabilitation at a hospital in St. Louis. Please continue to send healing to him & support to his partner Linda & other caregivers. Share words of encouragement for his rehab at this Healing page. Thanks much!”
“If everything is holy – imbued with divine power – how do we relate to that holiness? We pay attention. We find connection. We give back. One definition of sacred is “set apart and dedicated to a deity.” How do Heathens act in ways that are dedicated to Thor or Ing? How do Thelemites act in concert with the energy of Nuit? How do Celtic Reconstructionists honor the ever abundant cauldron of the Dagda? I could go on, but the implications of these questions should be clear: we bring everything in our lives into alignment with our worship and our practice. We can give food to the hungry as an act of devotion to the Dagda. We can offer protection to the weak, in Thor’s honor. And we can remember: Nuit is everywhere, the circumference of all that lives.”
There’s a lot there, so I hope you’ll read the entire essay, and use it to spark discussions on your blogs, social networks, and within your communities. As modern Pagans start to act within the world in an increasingly prominent and public manner, how our theologies drive and inspire our actions is something that we’ll need to hold close to our thoughts.
In the process of preparing an upcoming guest post from Pagan chaplain and activist Patrick McCollum I discovered that he’s undergoing surgery on Wednesday afternoon for a worrying condition he contracted while overseas on his recent trip to Thailand.
Rev. Patrick McCollum
“I’m having kind of a hard time right now, as it seems I have gotten some rare tropical virus/bacteria from my trip which has settled in my mouth. It has aggressively eaten a hole through the soft tissue and muscle and is now attacking the bone in my jaw. It’s really painful. I go in for surgery tomorrow morning where they will try to cut out the infected area and grind out the affected bone in an attempt to stop it. So far, antibiotics aren’t having any affect, but they will send the tissue to a tropical disease center for testing to try to find a way to stop it.”
The Passing of a Pagan Music Pioneer:PNC-Georgia reports that Steve Collins, better known within some Pagan circles as Lord Senthor, passed away on Monday. Collins was a musician who played in the band Moonstruck, and served in the Ravenwood Church of Wicca for over 30 years.
“He was a pioneer in the world of Pagan music. He started when there were very few folks singing songs for the Old Ones and he inspired many others to walk that path. Everyone in pagan music owes him a debt. I will miss him.” — Arthur Hinds, Emerald Rose
“I am very thankful for his years of service to the Pagan Community through his teachings, his music, and his leadership. I, like many others, mourn his passing, but take comfort in knowing that he lives on in our memories and in the many lives he has blessed.” — Selena Fox, Circle Sanctuary
Plans for a public memorial service in the Anniston, Alabama, area are currently under development. For more testimonials and remembrances, please see the PNC-Georgia obituary. Further updates and news will be posted there. My condolences to Lord Senthor’s friends and family, may he rest with his gods and return to us again.
“On Wednesday evening, March 16, Ed was rushed to a hospital and he remains hospitalized. He had a stroke and has a large blood clot on his brain. There also has been some bleeding on his brain. Please send healing blessings to Ed: that the blood clot be safely dissolved, that the bleeding on his brain stop, and that he heal and recover from the stroke. Also send healing support to his partner Linda and his other loved ones.”
Ed Francis, in addition to his work within the Pagan community, is a local radio personality in his native St. Louis. I had the pleasure of meeting Ed at last year’s Pagan Spirit Gathering, and he’s one of those people who fully commits himself to building community, doing the work, and creating bonds that last a lifetime. His loss would be a staggering blow to his local Pagan community, Circle Sanctuary, and the PSG family. So please send out healing, and lets hope Ed recovers from this stroke.
You can hear a short interview with Ed, here, where he shares a memory of PSG from 1999. You can also read expressions of healing support, here.
“Isaac is doing much better with his white cell count still going down. However, they have confirmed that one of the three tumors is cancerous; there will be more biopsies on Monday as they want to make sure all three have been biopsied individually. …Good news, it’s a rarer form of cancer that responds well to chemo and radiation. No surgery!”
In addition to sending healing energies and prayers, they will no doubt end up needing help with their medical bills (not to mention lost income). If you wish to make a contribution to the couple to help defray the costs of this hospitalization, there is donation information here. For up-to-date news and information, you can follow their Facebook fan-page. We here at The Wild Hunt wish Isaac a full and speedy recovery.
“His surgery was on Friday and it went well; they removed a large section of his descending colon and adjacent mesentery, his doctor is confident that he took out all the cancer and any pre cancerous lymph nodes. He said that he did not see any swollen or discolored nodes. The tissue was all sent to Pathology and we should have the results later this week since the Lab is shut down for the holiday. We will know that the surgeon successfully removed all the cancer when we receive that report. Until then folks the coin is, magickally speaking, still in the air.”
“Patrick was released from hospital this evening, with brace and cane and orders not to leave the house for two days minimum. He will have a long recovery. He remains heavily medicated to relieve intense pain. In spite of these difficulties, Patrick’s recovery has been amazing, no doubt helped in great part by the workings and prayers of many Pagans.”
The friends and family of both McCollum and Zell-Ravenheart request continued prayers and healing work as they recover.
“All day we’ve been getting news that the police have been raiding houses, breaking down doors, arresting people, with or without warrants or warnings. We hold the morning meeting in a public park, because our Convergence Space has been raided and closed the night before. Someone says, “We’re a community that includes children—we can’t clear them out of their own living spaces. Remember if the police raid your space it’s important to have someone negotiate with them to get the children out.” I am a tough person. I’ve been through a lot of these things and in spite of all my efforts to stay open I’ve grown something of my own protective scales. But those words pierce through them, and I find tears welling up in my eyes. It just hits me, that we’re standing here in the United States of America, in the liberal city of my birth, talking about how to protect children from armed police.”
“Dressed in crisp white apparel, the pagans gathered before the east wing of the temple’s imposing Corinthian columns and prayed to Athena, the ancient Greek goddess of wisdom and patron of Athens, asking her to protect the Parthenon from further destruction. “Oh, goddess,” roared high priestess Doretta Peppa, her hands extending over an offering of water and olive oil. “We are ready to defend your grounds. “[But] we ask of you to protect this site, this city and its civilization, and to rid it of all evils such as the deconstruction of the Acropolis.” The Greek Culture Ministry forbids ceremonies of any sort at archeological sites. But in January, the pagan revivalists used a second century temple of Zeus in Athens to stage the first known ceremony of its kind in 1,600 years.”
“The new museum,” Peppa said, “is a monumental eyesore, an architectural monstrosity within the most traditional and archeologically-rich part of Athens. It is an insult to our heritage, and if we start deconstructing our monuments for the sake of filling up a museum, then what will we be left with?”
Greek officials are hoping the new space will boost tourist income and pressure the British government to release the Elgin Marbles, which they claim were obtained illegally, back to Greece.
“The reason I’m writing all this about Patrick — and I am only scratching the surface — is to tell you that he is dealing with a medical condition for which I’m asking your help. On August 15, Patrick underwent surgery for a long-standing problem with his spine. The surgery itself went well, but two days later Patrick suffered a complication that necessitated further surgery on August 18. He has been in ICU at Eden Medical Center in Castro Valley, California since then, and remains there, although much improved. Patrick welcomes healing. Given what I’ve told you about him, and that you have a photo and know where is is, I ask that you remember him in your prayers and rituals, light candles, appeal to his Lady Brigit, and do whatever else you can to hasten Patrick’s relief from extreme pain and his ultimate recovery.”
“…in a chapter where the authors discuss the surprises they encountered in their research for the book, one of the authors (Burroughs) addresses one of the surprises he encountered in terms of alleged links between Wicca, Satanism, sexual promiscuity, and child abuse: “I’ve found these assertions to be unfounded (at least in mainstream Wicca).” I italicized the last portion of the quote to draw attention to the issue I’m raising here. While Burroughs was pleased to discover that Wicca does not engage in the worst of its stereotypical associations, nevertheless, for Burroughs this appears to be the case with “mainstream Wicca,” which appears to leave room for non-mainstream or underground Wicca, whatever those may be.”
“Years ago, I would have worried about what people thought and would not have told anyone I was a witch. Now there are so many people like me, that I simply think that the people who matter don’t mind and the people who mind, don’t matter.”
“Anyone hoping to see animal sacrifices or disemboweling during Pagan Pride Day Saturday, will be greatly disappointed say two spokespeople for the Pagan church which is hosting the Nanaimo event at Kin Hut Park in Departure Bay. “One of the main reasons we hold Pagan Pride Day each year is to debunk myths like that,” said Kam Abbott of Nanaimo’s Temple of the Green Leaf Cauldron Church.”
So sorry folks, no disemboweling here, move along!
“Prosecutors say Harris was practicing satanism and that the killings were part of a ritual from a satanic bible. Harris’ attorney, assistant public defender Michael Williams, said during a court hearing on Wednesday that prosecutors are seeking to link what Harris says and does to satanism. Casting spells and practicing witchcraft is not proof of satanism, Williams said. “(They) want shock value, sensationalism and knit-pick analysis of religious text in order to satisfy an inference,” Williams said.”
Needless to say, I would LOVE to read this affidavit from the alleged Satanic high priest (and know his identity). Lawrence Harris is pursuing an insanity defense. Trial is set for Oct. 14.
“I went to see Hellboy II: The Golden Army last night, and to my slack-jawed disbelief, the elves were speaking Old Irish (or an awkward version thereof). It was like being a twitcher who draws the curtains one morning to see a pink flamingo standing on the windowsill. It was oddly accented (Balor was the best) and I’d need to see transcriptions to be sure that it was correct, but I don’t think there’s any doubt that they were trying to use the language … Nothing in all the film’s wonders moved me so much as hearing the meaningless preverbal particle no- with a 2nd singular Class A infixed pronoun (leniting).”
“Oberon had a meeting yesterday (Thurs Aug 14) with his doctor, Stephen Denigris, to discuss the results of the biopsy they did on the golfball-sized tumor (lesion) they discovered during his recent colonoscopy. He says it is indeed cancerous, and colon cancer is aggressive and nasty. However, it is far enough up that it can be surgically removed along with about a foot of the descending colon (left side). He said that it appears to be less than a year old, so the chances of a complete removal of all cancerous tissue are excellent. There is concern that some of the cancer cells may have migrated into OZ’s lymph nodes, which would be a really serious problem, requiring radiation and chemotherapy.”
“So, tomorrow is the full moon, and I know that many of you will be doing ritual for OZ anyway, and I’d like to see us return to this tradition, so I’m calling a Rolling Thunder for Oberon to begin at 9 PM. That’s always local time, and that’s for Saturday, August 16th. For those across the international dateline, for whom it is already Saturday, or if it’s more convenient to pick it up when it rolls across to Sunday, August 17th, that’s fine as well. Generally we continue the roll for at least 48 hours, to accommodate people who hear about the roll late, and just to keep pushing the energy and accelerating the wave.”
We here at The Wild Hunt know just how horrible cancer can be, and wish Oberon a swift and easy recovery. Thanks to Michael and Lupa for bringing this to my attention.
* According to the healing list, a “Rolling Thunder” healing ritual is when “a date and time is set, and at that time (the local time for each member), each member does a ritual (alone or with others in their own way) for what the ritual is about. Because we have members all over the globe, the energies raise over quite a period of time. It’s known to be quite effective.” For more specific information, you can join the Morning Glory Healing Update list.