2017 Beltane Festival
By: Cait Branigan
FOUNDATION CENTRE - IRELAND
May 6, 2017
As Bealtaine came upon us, the moon growing in her fullness and the Hawthorn blossoms beginning to burgeon, we gathered on the morning of May 6th at the Temple in Clonegal to celebrate this beautiful festival in joyful community.
A lovely and vibrant group gathered in the theatre, beautifully restored over the last few months, and took a few moments to pause and reflect on the procession we were about to make. Holding hands, we began to breathe into our togetherness, our unity on this special day.
Following the sound of gentle chanting and drumming, which resounded sweetly throughout the group, we made our way to the Rose Garden. Here, in a heartfelt invocation, we were reminded of the seed of love and wisdom which grew and flowered into the many faiths of the world. None more important than the other, they are reflective of human diversity and are honoured in our Fellowship.
From here, we made our way to the Grove of the Druid Clan of Dana, to hear the invocations and to pause in the beauty of the great trees planted by Olivia's father. As we stood, we caught site of Olivia's own Birch which is growing with light and the bright, verdant hue of a young tree. We were reminded of the many changes the Fellowship has undergone since Olivia's passing, yet, we are still celebrating and growing together. Onwards we walked to the Abbey and heard a beautiful invocation to the Goddess of the Land by one of the priestesses. Throughout the procession, we were entranced by the wonderful garden and the abundance of new growth and beauty surrounding us.
We entered the Temple after our, now traditional, invocation to Persephone - always a wonderful reminder, a moment to pause, to reflect on our heart's intentions. As we gathered around the Well of Brigid, we remembered some of our priestesses and friends who were unable to be with us on the day, holding them in our hearts throughout the ceremony. The Oracle of Dana was read, Olivia's wonderful words reminding us of the beauty of nature, the balance of light and dark and the mystery of Danu's presence in all of Life. To truly feel, know life, we must know Her in the presence of Nature. Blessings were then given to those gathered after the blessing and libation of the well water.
As we came to the High Altar, a priestess sat in trance and delivered a most beautiful and haunting oracle from the Mother of All That Is. We were reminded, in gentle, yet powerful words, of the need to love - to be in love, to walk in love, to act with love. We then heard a beautiful poem and were brought on a wonderful journey to meet with the Goddess in her emanation of Lover and Queen of May, along with her consort, the Green Man. After the journey, healing was sent and we all participated in a Jewish chant - Shalom Shekinah - while holding hands and honouring the Shekinah within all of us.
The Mystery Play celebrated, was that of Wesak and the story of Gautama and Princess Yasodhara. We had three players who truly embodied their roles and brought us into deep communion with the play and the sacred messages delivered through Gautama, Princess Yasodhara and the Goddess Maya: "But the jewel of Truth which is their Spiritual Self will glow within the hearts of those who truly follow your teaching Gautama, and they shall attain Nirvana, eternal bliss."
After closing and thanking the Deities invoked, healing was offered to those in need with two priestesses offering their services. We then all adjourned to Osbourne's to continue the vibrant conversations with which we began the day!
Cait Branigan, Circle of Brigid
May 14, 2017
Entrance to the Old Abbey, © copyright reserved
Return to Letters
Return to Castle Events
(Our gratitude to Cait for sharing this report!)
All Rights Reserved.