2018 brought a lot of wonderful new things to Columbia Grove and one of those things was the creation of the Nature Awareness Guild special interest group.
This guild focused on honoring our Earth through monthly volunteer work, hikes, and/or outdoors adventures that helped grow our spiritual connections to the beautiful land of the Pacific Northwest.
This year Nature Awareness Guild members put in a grand total of 149 hours of volunteer work, visited some cool places and learned a lot!
Here is what we achieved as a group for 2018!
Volunteered with Friends of Trees (wetland restoration and urban tree plantings): 74 hours
Visited the Volcano Observatory open house in Washington to learn about our Pacific Northwest geology
Volunteered with SOLVE (removal of invasive species in a local cemetery): 24 hours
Volunteered with Forest Park Conservancy (removing invasive species and park maintenance): 10 hours
A hike in the Columbia Gorge with focus on spiritual healing after the 2017 wildfires
Volunteered with The Nature Conservancy (removing invasive species): 9 hours
A trip to Ape Caves in Washington followed by an adventure to Merwin Lake
Beach Litter removal and guided meditation: 14 hours
Forest Park Litter removal: 18 hours
One of our biggest achievements for 2018 was planting a grand total of 102 trees in urban and wetland environments!
It’s been a fantastic year for this new guild and we can’t wait for 2019 and all the fun adventures it will bring! Lets see if we can plant even more trees this year!
If you have any questions about the guild or joining please don’t hesitate to contact us at www.columbiaADF.org
Above is a series of pictures of Friends and Members of Columbia Grove on various Nature Awareness activities!
Written by Arin D'Wulf
On December 15th, 2018, 37 members of the Portland Pagan community came together to honor the Winter Solstice. Our rite was a Mother's Night in the Anglo-Saxon tradition. We called on Thunor, god of Thunder, to protect our rite and guard the Outdwellers. For inspiration we called and offered to Woden. The Earth mother we named Erce, and offering of song was made to strengthen our relationship with our sovereign goddess Columbia. To open the gates we called out to Hama, creating the magic with him that was required to make sacred space. This ritual was held in honor of the Goddesses and Mothers, and those who walk with the Mothers. It was also held in honor of Horsa.
Offerings were made to the Mothers, and to the Kindreds three. And as we all sang Wassail, Horsa trotted out to ask for offerings. Chocolate Coins were offered, which Horsa accepted on behalf of the Nature Spirits and the spirit of the horse.
We took blessings from the Ancestors, Nature Spirits, and Shining ones, in the form of Rune cards from the Anglo-Saxon books. Beth, who lead the ritual, also took the omen.
Ancestors: Cen, Torch
Nature Spirits: Man, Mankind
Deities: Gyfu, Gift
The Ancestors remind us to carry the torch of leadership with courage.
The Nature Spirits remind us that mankind is mortal and we need each other's fellowship.
The Deities remind us to be hospitable and generous. We give that we may receive.
We would like to extend our thanks out to everyone who helped make this ritual a success. Beth and Arin for leading the ritual. Spider, David, Ari, Cheriti and Corwind for their help taking parts during ritual. And of course thanks goes to all the Friends of Columbia who helped with setup, and with the kitchen on Saturday.
Join us on January 27th, as we honor Brigid at Imbolc!
Photo credit to Cheriti and Eidh.
Written By David
Saturday, November 4th, 37 people, Grove members and guests, gathered together to face and expel their demons. Mars was called as the warrior, the Earth was honored in her aspect as Magna Mater, and Apollo was called upon for his gifts of inspiration. The Goddess Columbia was respectfully honored with song. Janus was called upon and honored as our gatekeeper. The ritual was held in honor of the ancestors that we know as well as those unknown to us. Two of our members embodied our ancestors to accept offerings from the ritual attendees.
Nature Spirits: The Hanged Man - Sometimes getting where you're going requires sacrificing the path you originally took to get there. It feels like a step backwards, but only because pride can blind you to other ways. If letting go of that pride means you find a better, smoother path, then that's a sacrifice worth making.
The Shining Ones: Four of Swords - You can't go full speed forever. Remember to take the time to relax, reflect, and recuperate. Stopping to catch your breath is not the same as giving up.
Ancestors: The High Priestess and The Empress - The women of the past are watching. Harness the gifts of wisdom and compassion they have given you. Walk with love and intuition. (i.e. Don't disappoint your grandmas)
Later on, two of our other members arrived as aspects of the demons that haunt us so we could make offerings of appeasement to them and remove them from our lives. Dis Pater was called upon to release his hounds who were encouraged by a powerful wave of emotions from the ritual attendees, to gather the demons and return them to Dis Pater.