DETROIT – While a Witch Ball is not uncommon in October, it is uncommon to find one dedicated to children. Members of Michigan’s Pagan community are doing just that. The Detroit Conjure Folk Magic Festival, together with the Michigan Witches Ball, will be hosting a Halloween party just for kids. Little Witches Ball Hocus-Pocus, as it is called, will be held in Roseville, Michigan, on October 12 at the American Legion East Detroit. Organizers write, “Merry meet, Little Witches and Pagans of all faiths, this is going to be a blast for the children this Halloween Season.” They also note that they will be serving soft drinks and pizza, and have music for the kids to enjoy.
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.
TWH — Paganism, together with the polytheistic and other religions with which it is often lumped, might be characterized as standing apart from conventional cultural and legal institutions. A not-entirely-undeserved stereotype is that of fierce independence from the over-culture, if not outright contrarianism, which can be witnessed in everything from an early acceptance of same-sex marriage to a rejection of the building of infrastructure that might result in hierarchy and rules. Even within Pagan and polytheist traditions wherein opposing cultural norms is not in vogue, it can be challenging to establish institutions and best practices for the sacred work of priest-craft and ministry simply because the faith traditions involved often don’t have enough in common for practitioners to overcome their small numbers by working together. We spoke with several Pagans and polytheists who have professional training related to the work often undertaken by members of the clergy, in order to better understand the challenges faced by those who are called to this service, particularly when it comes to providing any type of spiritual or emotional support which might be thought of as “counseling.” For the sake of simplicity, throughout this article the word “priest” refers as well to priestesses; this is not to suggest that one gender is preferred or superior over any other, but instead follows the deprecation of such words as “authoress” in acknowledgement that such roles can be filled by persons of any gender.
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.
MICHIGAN — Pagans, Heathens, and polytheists living in Michigan’s 9th Congressional District have a candidate they may want to take a closer look at. Matt Orlando is an Ásatrúar running for Congress as the endorsed candidate of the Libertarian Party of Michigan. And one of his campaign stops is at the All Hands Together Harvest Festival hosted by Ancient Faiths Alliance. Orlando is facing off against incumbent Sander Levin (D) and Christopher Morse (R) in the general election November 8, 2016. Orlando said his platform is focused on jobs, gun rights, freedom, privacy, and federal taxes and expenditures.