Serenity held our Imbolc celebration Saturday, February 8th. We began late that morning with a very artistic session of candle making. We did some molded candles, but the real fun was with the rolled beeswax candles, many of which were quite creative and beautiful. In addition, all three children took part in making granular wax candles (made much like a sand art bottle, but with a wick in the middle).
Ritual was held later that evening, with Morningstar and Barley as Priest and Priestess, respectively. Mare and Arianthe filled the roles of Seneschal and Summoner. It was an intimate circle, as there were only 2 additional attendants beyond the officiants. The altar was set, but so was a special shrine to Brigid. Officiants were deliberately all female, reflecting the traditional role of women as keepers of the sacred flame (as seen in both Celtic and Roman cultures).
Prior to casting, each attendant was welcomed with a triple blessing, warmed hands to bless the head, heart and belly. Brigid was invoked in her triple aspects, and 3 cauldrons were also lit (symbolizing the Celtic Cauldrons of Poesy). Divination by fire was performed, using the 3 cauldrons (who knew that sterno would be such a good vehicle for fire scrying?), and when complete, attendants all brought a gift to the shrine, placing their offering in the well before receiving a single Tarot card to signify their fortune for the coming year.
It was now time to fill the room with light, so everyone lit a taper from the source, and while singing a fire chant, lit the countless candles scattered about the room. The chant continued a few minutes longer, and before releasing energy, we asked Brighid for healing.
After circle was extended, we proceeded to our traditional feast and socializing. The final working of the evening was to pack away ritual gear in preparation for the household/covenstead’s move into their new home. It was a blessed evening indeed.