Patron saint of the Romani honoured in Hamilton

HAMILTON, On. – A celebration in honour of Sara e Kali, patron saint of the Romani people, will be held at the Willow Cove Pavillion, in Confederation Park, located in Hamilton, Ontario. This event is the vision of organizer John “Corvus” Huculiak. He instigated this celebration of the saint, after attending a retreat at Brushwood: “She came to me during a ritual. The feelings of security and passion were overwhelming, and [I] made an oath to fashion her effigy, align her current to where I lived, and have a one-time celebration to welcome her to the sacred geography of Hamilton.”

That “one-time celebration” was in 2014, and this year marks the fifth annual public celebration hosted by Huculiak and the Kali Sara Hamilton committee.

Pagan Community Notes: S.J. Tucker, Rev. Kirk Thomas, Patrick McCollum, and More!

Pagan Community Notes is a series focused on news originating from within the Pagan community. Reinforcing the idea that what happens to and within our organizations, groups, and events is news, and news-worthy. My hope is that more individuals, especially those working within Pagan organizations, get into the habit of sharing their news with the world. So let’s get started! Early this morning Pagan singer-songwriter S.J. Tucker posted a public note on Facebook announcing that she would no longer use the word “Gypsy” in songs, or in reference to her lifestyle, due to growing awareness of the word’s misuse, and history as a racial pejorative.

Quick Notes: Margot Adler, Marijuana Sacraments, and Fortune Telling as Free Speech

Just a few quick news notes for you on this Tuesday. Margot Alder on Witchcraft, Cults, and Space Travel: Margot Adler, NPR correspondent and author of the seminal 1979 book “Drawing Down the Moon: Witches, Druids, Goddess-Worshippers, and Other Pagans in America”, talks to the Daily Camera in Boulder, Colorado about her life and work in advance of her presentations at the 64th Annual Conference on World Affairs. Of special interest to my Pagan readers will be the story of how she landed the book deal that eventually lead to “Drawing Down the Moon.” “That happened by a complete fluke, way back in 1974. I had sort of a loser boyfriend.

Quick Note: Digging Deeper on Romanian Witch Tax

The mainstream media, and various popular blogs, have had a lot of fun with the news that Romania would start taxing the practice of witchcraft. Most treatments (including mine) focused on the anger of various Romanian witches, as though they were some sort of mystical European analog to our own anti-tax activists.  So it’s admirable to see The New Republic trying to dig a little deeper than the newswires to find out why witchcraft is being taxed now, and what its ramifications might be. “But, to start, how did witchcraft—subject throughout continental Europe to persecution and prosecution from roughly 1400 to 1800—become business as (not-so) usual in Romania in the first place? The answer might have something to do with the level of superstition that persists even in modern-day Romania.