Breaking Away from the Earth Mother/Sky Father Binary

One of the things that has come up recently in discussion on various ADF forums is the the binary nature of Earth Mother and Sky Father.  Although not all groves or solitary practitioners include an invocation to the Sky Father, as only the Earth Mother is required in our core liturgy, the implicit binary is still present.  This dualistic Earth Mother/Sky Father present in ADF rituals can be quite off-putting, especially for our non-binary members.

Continue reading “Breaking Away from the Earth Mother/Sky Father Binary”

Teaching Ritual Performance

Teaching Ritual Performance was designed to assist students to instruct others in ritual performance. In this course students are required to journal their work directing several rituals. Students do not necessarily need to write the rituals, nor do they need to write all the parts for the rituals. In fact, students may find it more challenging to allow others to write the ritual and then simply teach others how to work with the text they are given or come up with on their own.  The primary goal of this course is for students to enhance their skills for directing group ritual performance.

Continue reading “Teaching Ritual Performance”

Pagan Theology 1

Pagan Theology 1 is a survey of concepts and issues in theology, including both western philosophical concepts and key themes in existing world polytheisms. This course begins by teaching the student about the common terms used in the theological work of most religions, and moves on to ask students to think about how the concepts represented by those terms can be applied to Our Druidry.

Continue reading “Pagan Theology 1”

Leadership Development 2

Leadership Development 2

Leadership Development 2 is designed to build upon the knowledge attained in Leadership Development 1. This course will assist students in examining theoretical knowledge and provide opportunities for application of this knowledge. The primary goal for this course is for students to increase their knowledge and skills for effective group leadership and public relations.

Continue reading “Leadership Development 2”

ADF Election 2018 Questions

Rev. Jan Avende’s Responses – VAD Candidate

Hi y’all.  I’m running for Vice Arch Druid in the 2018 ADF Election this year.  Many folks have asked questions of the candidates, and I’ve answered all the ones I’ve seen below.  I also welcome more questions, and will update this post as necessary to address them.  Email me at rev.jan.avende at, so your questions don’t get lost.

Continue reading “ADF Election 2018 Questions”

Special Occasion Rituals

Special Occasion Rituals

This course was designed to expand a student’s knowledge and experiences for liturgical development beyond high day liturgy and specifically targets the development of liturgy for use in everyday life for a variety of different purposes.

The primary goal of this course is for students to enhance their skills for developing special occasion liturgy to meet the needs of individuals and groups occurring within every day life.

Course Objectives

  1. Students will identify, define and analyze several types of special occasion ritual and compare special occasion ritual to high day ritual.
  2. Students will increase their knowledge of creating ritual for diverse audiences.
  3. Students will utilize their knowledge and skills for liturgical writing to create special occasion rituals for a variety of different purposes.

Continue reading “Special Occasion Rituals”

Liturgy Practicum 3: Large Group Practice

Liturgy Practicum 3 is designed to focus on large group practices, both within and outside of ADF. In order to pass this course, you will be required to lead a ritual at a festival, and this ritual must be large enough to pose some of the usual problems that large rites create.

Because part of ADF’s vision is to provide publically accessible worship, even to those who are not part of ADF, this course will require that you perform a ritual for a generally non-ADF-centric function as well. You may contact the Archdruid or Clergy Council Preceptor to help you arrange to lead a festival ritual if you are a Consecrated Priest. If you have completed this course in the LGSP, you may submit the same answers, if it falls in the time frame specified below:

Rituals completing the exit standards of this course may not be performed more than three years before the submission date of this course for grading. The Clergy Council Preceptor will require some form of verification that the ritual took place and included the requisite number of attendees.

The primary goal of this course is for students to provide worship opportunities to the community and develop experience running large group rituals.

Course Objectives

  1. Students will increase their awareness of how ritual elements, such as creating group mind, developing effective prayers utilizing techniques such as motion, dance, music etc., and the use of physical offerings enhance small group ritual.
  2. 2. Students will lead rituals both within ADF and outside of it, and will examine their own processes for ritual creation.

Continue reading “Liturgy Practicum 3: Large Group Practice”

Winter Solstice Spiral Liturgy: Solstice Eve & Solstice Morn: Fellowship & The Sun

a three armed spiral with the words "Winter Solstice Spiral Liturgy" at the center, with a line drawing of a storm cloud below the spiral, a fire to the right of the spiral, and waves to the left of the spiral. There are 7 dots on each arms of the spiral to mark where the candles go.

Solstice Eve and Solstice Morn: Fellowship and The Sun

A Summary

I light our hearth fire so that it’s going strong by sunset on Solstice Eve, and spend some time hiding little tea lights all over the house. We then turn out all the lights in the house and gather as a family with my hearth fire lantern and a taper candle in front of the fireplace, and do a short ritual (included below) where honor the Earth, the Kindreds, and then the warmth of the hearth and fellowship that will carry us through the darkest night.

We then transfer the hearth fire to the lantern (which will be our light source for the hunt), and set out to hunt throughout the house to find, and light, all the hidden candles. Right now I send my daughter to find them, and then I light them from the taper candle (lit off the hearth). I imagine as she gets older I’ll be able to let her light the candles, but not yet.

We then gather all the candles from around the upper story of the house and bring them down to the kitchen table, where we have dinner by candlelight. This serves the double purpose of giving us more light, and not leaving candles burning unattended, particularly because we have a cat and a dog.

We then make a toast before dinner about something that makes us happy and that we’re grateful for.

After dinner we take our tray of gathered candles back over the hearth and Solstice Tree, and exchange a single gift. By the time we’ve opened them and played with new toys for a little bit, it’s time for bed. We leave LED candles “burning” in our bedrooms throughout the Solstice night, and then the next morning wake up to greet the Dawn and the newborn Sun. The adults will often stay up to keep vigil through the night. In the morning we go outside to light a small candle, and then come in to finish the spiral liturgy.

Continue reading “Winter Solstice Spiral Liturgy: Solstice Eve & Solstice Morn: Fellowship & The Sun”