BARNEVELD, Wis. — Pagan Spirit Gathering, a week-long Pagan summer festival hosted by Circle Sanctuary, will have a new addition this year called Women’s Hearth, a space dedicated specifically to women of all kinds. PSG hosted its first dedicated space for women at its inception in 1980. That space was eventually named Moon Lodge, and was a fixture at PSG for over 20 years. “Even after announcement were made.
DAHLONEGA, Ga. — Pagan musician Arthur Hinds remembers the time four years ago when he and his late wife, Kathryn, were “honored-slash-condemned” – he said with a soft laugh — to lead the main ritual at Pagan Spirit Gathering. “That is a huge thing,” Hinds said from the couple’s home in Dahlonega, Georgia., where they led a circle in the Welsh Bardic Tradition they founded. “We prepared, we rehearsed, we got everybody together. There are hundreds of people in the circle, and you look back and there are hundreds more in a line still coming in.
AUSTIN, Texas — Governor Greg Abbott signed into a law the Texas adoption bill that aims to protect “the rights of conscience for child welfare services providers.” As we reported in May, the controversial bill has generated both national support and criticism. Proponents claim that the new law will help an ailing child care system by protecting faith-based service organizations, which make up a sizable bulk of the potential child welfare providers. The bill’s sponsor, Rep. James Frank (R), posted on Facebook: “HB 3859 bans no one.” The aim, as he has said, is to improve the system and find stable families for troubled children. Contrary to that, critics say that the law will allow for open discrimination based on religion, marital status, or sexual preference. Texas Freedom Network President Kathy Miller said, “With his signature [..], Gov. Abbott has joined the lieutenant governor and other lawmakers in taking Texas down a dark and cruel road.”
COLUMBIA, S.C. — After the rise in reported cases of vandalism and threats made against U.S. Jewish Community Centers and temples, the Interfaith Partners of South Carolina (IPSC) took immediate action and reached out to the area’s Jewish community. Pagan priestess Holli Emore is on the board of IPSC and attended a February meeting between the organization and a local JCC management team. “As it happens, they are very worried, as nearly all JCCs are, about enrollment for the summer children’s programs. Without that income, their budget becomes very challenging, and without being able to serve children, there goes their mission, too,” said Emore. The JCC representatives informed IPSC’s board that Jewish centers around the country have had “so many parents pull their children out of the preschool that they are facing closure.” In response, the IPSC will being help the local JCC with an April festival to show support to the local Jewish community.
GATLINBURG, Tenn. — Tuatha Dea band member Tesea Dawson ended up raising $4,660 for her “Gatlinburg Wildfires Christmas Fund.” She launched the campaign in the days after fires destroyed her home town, and hundreds of people were left with no home, and the children with no toys. Dawson spent the weekend shopping for new toys and other related needs to give to the local families most affected by the fires. She wanted the children to, at the very least, still receive holiday presents.