Pagan Community Notes: climate march, Margaret Alia Denny, Buckland Gallery, and more!

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Courtesy: NASA / Goddard Space Flight Center

TWH – The 2017 People’s Climate March brought over 200,000 protesters to Washington D.C. and smaller venues around the world. Saturday’s event was planned prior to the election, although many protesters focused on recent decisions being made by the Trump administration. Paul Getsos, the National Coordinator for the People’s Climate Movement said:

“This march grew out of the relationship building among some of the country’s most important progressive organizations and movements. In 2014, the march was planned as a singular moment to pressure global leaders to act on climate change. There was a simple demand – act.”

Getsos added that the effort being made is aimed at building “power to move our leaders to act on climate while creating family-sustaining jobs, investing in front line and indigenous communities and protecting workers who will be impacted by the transition to a new clean and renewable energy economy.” He added that this movement is not just a one-day or one-year project, and that they need everyone.

As was the case in 2014, Pagans were in attendance at events around the U.S. Later in the week, we will be talking with some of those protesters about what they saw and why they went.

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DENVER – Colorado’s Pagan community lost one of its members this weekend. Margaret Alia Denny, president of the Hearthstone Community Church, died Friday after complications from a surgery. Her husband Doug Peterson made the heartfelt public announcement on Facebook Saturday.

Alia, as she was known, was born Nov. 6, 1959 and was originally from Kansas City, Missouri. But she is best known in the community for co-founding the Hearthstone Community Church in 1991. When the church celebrated its 20th year, in 2011 Alia wrote,”It’s hard to believe … I was a young (OK, 30) single witch when I started on all of this.” She was not only just young but also a new mom working and studying toward a masters degree.

Over the years, the church served its community with spiritual services, public rituals, and community fun. Through that work, Alia impacted many Pagans in the Denver region. Outside of her spiritual work, she also ran for Arapahoe County Clerk and Recorder in 2002 on the Libertarian platform. She didn’t win, but reportedly received 37% of the vote.

In more recent, Alia was had backed down from her more active roles in the church due to a number of disabilities, but she remained a member of the clergy who offered spiritual services to friends and community members.

On Thursday, Alia went into surgery to correct a wound from a past hernia procedure. Although the prognosis was originally good, there were some complications by Friday morning. As reported by her husband, the doctors were working to get her blood sugars under control, and she appeared to be responding to treatment. However, that changed by late afternoon and, despite all attempts to revive her, Alia passed around 7:00 pm that evening.

Although she departed from this world early and unexpectedly, Alia has left a legacy in Hearthstone Church and all the people that she has served along her way. What is remembered, lives.

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CLEVELAND, Ohio —  The grand opening of Buckland’s Gallery of Witchcraft and Magic was reportedly a success. Curator Toni Rotonda said, “It was so exciting to see so many people come out to support the gallery opening and to meet Ray. The line of people snaked through the store, out of the entrance, and down the street. Amazing. We were humbled.”

Rotunda added, “Ray had the chance to meet many new people and also reacquaint with many old friends. We both commented (surprisingly) on how many younger generations attended  A testament to the respect he has garnered over the decades.”

The gallery is currently open to the public three days during the week: Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. It is located inside A Separate Reality Records.

Raymond Buckland cuts the ribbon at the Buckland Gallery [courtesy image].

In other news

  • John Beckett’s first book is now available for purchase. In a blog post, Beckett said, “Someone on Facebook asked me how it felt to finally hold my book. At first, it was no big deal. I’ve been finished with it for so long I’ve been disconnected from it. But the more I thought about it, the better it felt. I wrote a book. More than that, I wrote a book that didn’t exist.” Here’s the TWH review from March.
  • Tuatha Dea will be releasing its latest CD Kilts and Corsets this month. The CD release party will be June 3 at the Open Chord in Knoxville, Tennessee. Tickets are now on sale.
  • Ardantane Learning Center, based in New Mexico, will be offering new online classes at the end of May, including one with Kerr Cuhulain called Paladin Training and another on Paganism 101. They will also be hosting a Goddess Retreat at the center for women ages 18 and up.
  • Fans of the band Emerald Rose can now purchase a piece of their history. The band is selling their burgundy van to pay off remaining debts. It’s “the fastest van you will every drive,” reports the band members. Called Burgundy Buffalo, the Chevy Express Van with a “corvette engine” was home to Emerald Rose as they toured over the years. “We would love to pass it on to another band or friends.” Fans that interested or curious can follow the updates on the band’s Facebook page.
  • Beltane events will continue all week around the country and into next weekend as Pagans and Heathens continue to celebrate the “lusty month of May.”