DETROIT, Mich – Last weekend at the Dearborn Double Tree Hotel, more than 1,000 delegates gathered for the 22nd annual ConVocation convention. The theme this year was “The Seeker of Wisdom Must Release the Illusion of Knowledge.” ConVocation was founded in 1995 by the Magical Education Council (MEC) as a way to bring together practitioners of various spiritual paths and faiths for teaching and the promotion of promote fellowship among all esoteric traditions. Last May, the Detroit community was shocked to learn of the sudden and untimely death of ConVocation chairperson Michael Wiggins. The MEC board had charged him with the task of shaping the theme for this year’s event.
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Michael Wiggins, a pillar of the Michigan Pagan community, passed away on the morning of May 4, after suffering a sudden heart attack. Michael was not only the “face of ConVocation” and president of the Magickal Education Council, but also a well-respected artist, dancer, entrepreneur, and visionary. On June 13, 1965, Michael John Wiggins was born “Guilain Michael Palmateer” to Donald and Alyce Wiggins. He was baptized in a local Catholic church and later given a Wiccaning within his mother’s own coven. Family friend Sue Wert remembered him as being “a little and lovable kid, always sharing smiles and hugs.”
DETROIT, Mich. –The Michigan Pagan Scholarship Fund announced its second annual winner last week, naming Rebecca Phoenix as the 2015 recipient. Rebecca A Phoenix lives in Ferndale, Michigan, and recently graduated from Ferndale High School. Rebecca Phoenix is a die-hard history, mythology and art buff. Put these passions together you get a direct line to studying museum sciences.
In February 2014, the Tempest Smith Foundation (TSF) will be holding its very last ConVocation fundraiser before permanently closing its doors. Annette Crossman, TSF’s current executive director and widow of founder Denessa Smith, says that it is “time for the torch to be passed on …and return to normal life.” For over ten years, TSF has been a voice for diversity tolerance in its Michigan community and an advocate of anti-bullying campaigns. Launched in 2003, the Tempest Smith Foundation was the brainchild of Denessa Smith, the mother of bullying victim Tempest Smith. In February of 2001, Tempest committed suicide after enduring six years of persistent abuse in school. Over the following two years Denessa was able to transform her grief into building a foundation that would advocate for tolerance – a foundation that might save other children from her daughter’s fate.