Cara Schulz is a journalist and author living in Minnesota with her husband and cat. She has previously written for PAGAN+politics, PNC-Minnesota, and Patheos. Her work has appeared in several books by Bibliotheca Alexandrina and she's the author of Martinis & Marshmallows: A Field Guide to Luxury Tent Camping and (Almost) Foolproof Mead Making. She loves red wine, camping, and has no tattoos.
WASHINGTON DC — The U.S. Supreme Court has declined to hear a case brought forth by two Pagans concerning the Ten Commandments monument previously erected in front of Bloomfield City Hall. Because SCOTUS declined to hear the case, the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals decision, stating that the monument should be removed, will stand. Wiccan Priestess Janie Felix and Pagan Buford Coone, with the full support of the ACLU, challenged their home city of Bloomfield’s installation of a Ten Commandants monument on public property in 2014. The ACLU argued that city officials “accorded preferential treatment to the monument’s sponsors, disregarding many city ordinances and policy requirements that would regulate the monument’s installation.”
Ms. Felix said she is happy the justice system worked in this case and hopes it sets a solid legal precedent for future cases. She says that she is also thankful to the ACLU for their assistance.
BRIGHTON, U.K. – Organizers of Witchfest International, the largest Pagan conference held in the UK, announced last Saturday that they were cancelling the 2018 event due to financial challenges. The announcement was made by Merlyn, one of the organizers, directly before headliner Professor Ronald Hutton presented at this year’s conference. Merlyn said an unexpected and sharp decrease in attendance was to blame for a lack of funds to finance the conference for 2018, but he added that plans were in the works for the conference to return in 2019. “Final numbers aren’t in yet, but we think our losses are in the thousands [of pounds],” said Merlyn. Witchfest International, run by The Children of Artemis, typically attracts around 3000 attendees and is held in the Brighton Centre in the seaside town of Brighton.
FREDERICK, Md. – A collection of nearly 3,300 Pagan books and items have found a new home. The collection was once housed in a Washington D.C. Pagan community center. After the center closed in 2014, the collection was put into storage. Now it has been donated to the Unitarian Universalist Congregational Church in Fredrick.
MINNEAPOLIS – A Pagan minister has come under fire with allegations of ethical and sexual misconduct while teaching two students seeking their 2nd Degree with the Twin Cities-based Wiccan Church of Minnesota (WiCoM). The group’s board says that it investigated the five allegations against Rev. Keith Vorderbruggen and, while they found instances of ethical lapses, none rose to the level of misconduct. The decision by the WiCoM board is now being questioned by students and community members, as well as other alleged victims who have since stepped forward. The events
“It’s not right what we were asked to do,” said Alyssa Reber, one of the two students who lodged a formal complaint against Vorderbruggen.
According to Reber’s account and several corroborating documents, she and Daniel Bicknell were students in a larger class studying with Vorderbruggen and his wife to earn their 2nd Degree. After the March class, Vorderbruggen approached Reber and Bicknell and asked them if they would like to take part in more advanced classes in a Left Hand Path (LHP) tradition.
TWH – Autumn celebrations are often designated as times to “reap what you sow” and for many Pagans, Heathens, and Witches that means harvest time for plants with both magical and medicinal purposes. The Wild Hunt spoke with both amateur and professional herbalists to see what’s their favorite plant to grow and what’s an easy, beneficial plant for a beginner to grow. Medicinal Herbs
Musician Bonnie Hanna-Powers says she grows calendula in her garden. She says it’s easy to grow but does prefer good soil. “This year I grew my plants from transplants, in one garden, and from direct sowing the seeds in another,” says Ms. Hanna-Powers.