Column: 11 Influential Pagans of Color – a Discussion

 Pagan Perspectives

There is something about a list in this culture: lists for best movies, most popular songs, best quotes of the year, best places to visit, most memorable books of the year. These are just a few of the many lists that are created in today’s culture every year. It is no wonder that the creation of lists are something that has also become a “thing” within the over-culture of Paganism as well. While we normally see the publication of these lists at the end of the calendar year, 2018 brought us a list early, starting conversations before the shifting of seasons begins. Everyone has been talking about the most recent list published on the Patheos Pagan blog Raise the Horns.

Pagan Community Notes: John Slade, American Conservative magazine, March 31 and more

ST. PAUL, Minn — Reclaiming member John Slade, who was seeking a party endorsement to run for a seat in the Minnesota House of Representatives, fell short in his bid in three rounds of voting on March 10. Slade was seeking to replace retiring incumbent Sheldon Johnson as representative of the east side of the city. The decision was made at a convention of the Democratic-Farmer-Labor party, the local affiliate of the Democrats who have selected winning candidates in the district for decades. Had no candidate reached a 60 percent majority in the voting, a primary would have been called pursuant to the complex election system in place in Minnesota.

Trump Wins Presidency; Pagans React

TWH –After a high-profile campaign that lasted far longer than many Americans might have preferred, Donald J. Trump won the U.S. presidential election yesterday. While Pagans and polytheists held widely divergent views about who they wanted in the White House, it is now time to consider what a Trump presidency means to members of minority religious groups. Before turning to the national election,  we look at the local level, where politics begins and where many candidates are tested and vetted. The Wild Hunt has been following the campaigns of two members of our collective communities: Heathen Matt Orlando, who was running for a seat in the House of Representatives, and Cara Schulz, a Hellenic polytheist (and Wild Hunt reporter) running for the Burnsville City Council. Orlando, running in Michigan’s ninth district, was not successful.

Pagan Community Notes: Rev. Elena Rose, Caldera Musical Festival, Church of the Eternal Circle and more!

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. — On May 19, Solar Cross Temple board member Elena Rose graduated from the Starr King School for the Ministry and, a few days later, was ordained by the historic Church for the Fellowship of All Peoples. During the graduation ceremony itself, all students were given two minutes to speak at the podium, and Rev. Rose used this opportunity to ask her school “to do better.” She explained, “I used my speaking time both to declare my love for the community and to speak about the various struggles I’ve faced there as a trans woman of color, and then asked the community to do better.”  These struggles, which happened over five years, included everything from the continued use of wrong pronouns to physical threats.

Transgender Day of Remembrance

Today marks the 16th annual Transgender Day of Remembrance. People across the world will be holding various events and vigils, remembering those people who have been lost due to transgender violence. It is a powerful day that is a part of a larger month long awareness campaign. Transgender Day of Remembrance is held every November, marking the death of Rita Hester, who was murdered in her Boston apartment in 1998. A year after that death, which still remains unsolved, writer Gwendolyn Ann Smith held a vigil in San Francisco to honor Hester’s life and bring awareness to the issues faced by Transgender people. The 1999 vigil became the first Transgender Day of Remembrance, which also launched the website “Remembering Our Dead” and several other awareness campaigns and movements.