The Value in Recognizing the Work of Others

The beginning of the year is a time in ADF when a lot of the administrative tasks happen.  While we have quarterly reports that are filed on a more frequent basis, by February we’re also ramping up to the compiling of the ADF Annual Report, Priests are filing their annual reports, and organizational elections are in full swing.

One of the really cool things I’ve been able to do this year as Vice Arch Druid is read a whole bunch of the reports that people have sent in. Everything from SIG, Guild, and Kin reports, to Grove and Regional Druid reports, to Priest reports. Now, I know what you might be thinking: “Reading administrative paperwork? Ew!” But honestly it has been really fulfilling and has helped me feel more deeply connected to the membership as a whole, as well as to my peers in leadership.

February is when clergy annual reports are due, and I was kind of blown away by the cool stuff that our priests are doing. I took the time to read and respond individually to every priest, and I’m hoping to expand that kind of response to include regional and senior druids soon, in part because of how fulfilling it was, but also because I think it’s really important to recognize the people who are doing these things that make ADF a rewarding community to be a part of. It’s important to let people know you see the work they’re doing and deeply appreciate it.

My biggest takeaway from reading the annual reports from our clergy is that everyone is doing so much cool stuff, and I’d love to build a way for us to share about that more regularly! I’m hoping that the new website and ADF blog will make that kind of sharing more accessible and sustainable for all of our members. So, don’t be surprised if I reach out to you directly to write an article.  

Lots of our priests and groves are very focused on training the next generation of liturgists.  This is so important as our elders become less involved as they age, and eventually pass on.  It would be devastating if their knowledge was lost, so I’m so heartened to hear that there is a focus on this important work.  I am hoping to gather some of their strategies to share so that other individuals and groves can also work towards training up new leaders, both in ritual and in administration.  My grove has an informal progression for teaching new liturgists, as well as a liturgical certificate from many years ago that we could bring back into practice.  

Many, maybe even most, of our priests focus on some sort of sustainable living in their personal lives and personal homes. I read about a lot of people who have done things like composting, eating local (whether from farmers markets or their own gardens), and using various forms of green energy.  Those who work with groves also shared the ways that their groves are working towards environmental care and sustainability, from direct donations to environmental groups to cleanups with their communities.  

I also found it fascinating to read about how many priests and groves have incorporated local waterways and watersheds into their practice, distinct from the work they do with the Earth Mother.  I would love to see how other individuals and groves work with their local waterways.  Here in Columbus, Ohio we have multiple rivers that run through the city, as well as smaller creeks and streams.  Our Grove’s nemeton backs up to Blacklick Creek, which we have incorporated throughout the years in some of our workings.  I think it’s important to at least know a little bit about your local watershed, even if you don’t incorporate it into your religious practice.  

All in all, so many people in ADF are doing so many cool things that we don’t necessarily hear about unless we are in their local community.  If you are doing something cool or different, please reach out to me, because I would love to hear about it.  You should also consider writing an article for Oak Leaves about it.  New and fresh ideas help keep our organization thriving.  Keep it up y’all! I’m glad to be a part of ADF with you!

~ Rev. Jan Avende (they/them), Vice Arch Druid, ADF

This post was originally published over on my Patreon. If you enjoy the work I do, and would like to support it, please join me over there.

Rev. Jan Avende, the Vice Arch Druid of ADF, is an Initiate and Consecrated Priest, and serves the Central Ohio community out of Three Cranes Grove, ADF.  They are a talented Bard, Liturgist, and Spiritworker, with a passion for mentoring others, building resources for pagan families, and making the work that we do as pagans accessible for all.  

One thought on “The Value in Recognizing the Work of Others

  1. It’s great to hear that so much cool stuff is happening (and I look forward to the new ADF blog, that sounds exciting)! I’m an ADF newbie, just established a Hearth Keeper’s Hearth with my partner and we’re thinking of working through the Dedicant Path together soon, so I’m a long way off doing anything as interesting as leading a grove(!) but it’s great to feel like part of a vibrant community.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.