During the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, members of Solar Cross Temple took some time out to offer assistance and comfort to others within the Portland community. Hosted by Direct Action Alliance and Rose City Black Guards, the event brought people together to support “those most in need.” The two groups invited people “to come out to [Battleship Memorial Park] and support each other in the best way we know how, by helping.” They offered hot meals, and were collecting living essentials and clothing to give to the houseless. The gathering was held between 12-3pm, which happened to be the scheduled time of another event: Patriot Prayer rally. In the Facebook event invitation, DAA and RCBG said, “They are trying to hide their hate fueled fascist ideology behind a banner of Jesus and religiousness.
TWH – In November, the Norse Mythology Blog launched its annual art contest. Now in its seventh year, the competition is an opportunity for artists of all ages to show off their talent and their knowledge of Norse mythology. The 2016 contest theme was Midwinter Spirit. “During the winter solstice on December 21, those of us in the northern hemisphere will experience the shortest day and longest night of the year. This may seem early in the season, but it’s really the middle. […]Throughout Northern Europe, there are local traditions that celebrate midwinter. Some of these practices preserve very old rituals.”
Over the weekend, the east coast was hit with record snow falls, blizzard conditions, white-outs, thunder snow and more as a Winter Storm “Jonas” came in for a visit. According to The Weather Channel, who began naming these winter storms in 2011, Jonas is the “largest snowstorm on record for Harrisburg, Pennsylvania; Baltimore; and JFK Airport in New York City, with all of those locations receiving over 2 feet of snow.” As far south as Georgia through New York, the snow fell in varying degrees, and Pagans and Heathens took to social media to report the conditions at their locations. We reached out to a number of them to get a better idea of the conditions. Hardest hit was the New Jersey, Washington D.C. and New York City metro regions.
Today, the U.S. honors Martin Luther King Jr. Public schools, government offices and many businesses are closed in order to recognize his work and sacrifice, as well as the staggering influence that his message has had on American society. Many Pagans, Polytheists and Heathens across the country are participating in local activities, both small and large, to recognize Dr. King and his influence. Some choose to honor his work within the privacy of their practice. For example, T. Thorn Coyle noted that “Solar Cross Devotional will honor the legacy of Dr. King, focusing on economic and racial justice.” However, many others are attending larger public community events such as the second annual #96Hours action held this weekend in California’s Bay Area. Organized by the Anti Police-Terror Organization, the #96Hours event consists of a weekend of scheduled actions, including protests, interfaith vigils, rallies and other activities, culminating in a march through the city of Oakland. Groups and individuals participating in the various activities include members of Coru Cathubodua, Solar Cross Temple, Golden Gate Kindred and more.
Tonight and tomorrow is when many modern Pagans celebrate the fire festival of Imbolc sacred to the goddess Brigid, patroness of poets, healers, and smiths. Today is also the feast day of Saint Brigid of Ireland, the patron saint of poets, dairymaids, blacksmiths, healers, cattle, fugitives, Irish nuns, midwives, and new-born babies. In Kildare, Ireland’s town square, a perpetual flame is kept lit and housed in a statue that pays homage to Brigid. Festivities for La Feile Bride in Kildare started on Jan 30 and will continue through Feb 8. There are many other notable observances held during these first few days of February. For example, in some Celtic Recon traditions, this is a time to honor Cú Chulainn’s three-day combat with his foster-brother Fer Diad.