Earth Day marked a very special event that was held at Deeply Rooted Church over the following weekend. The first of four seasonal Women’s Weekends for the Deeply Rooted Tribe also marked a special Rite of Passage for one of our caretakers, Willow LeFay. While there was only a smidgen of people that attended the gathering, we all made the most out of the first sunny weekend in spring. Inch by inch, the snow melted and the Earth began to awaken from Her long wintry slumber. We were rewarded with awesome sights, warm hugs and much laughter. Relaxation, rejuvenation, Sisterhood, and crafting soaked up every moment of our time together.
Willow is the highly creative and inspirational daughter of long-time caretaker and Deeply Rooted resident Shahara LeFay. This weekend, Ms. Willow passed bravely into adulthood with April 22nd marking her 18th birthday! It was up to us, the ladies of Deeply Rooted, to put on a very special ritual to mark as a Rite of Passage. We stood around a make-shift altar and called out to Egyptian Goddesses Isis and Hathor and performed a modern take on an ancient custom. “Opening of the Ways” calls for the inner Goddess in each of us to stand up and watch as we are joined by yet another adult in the Pagan world. It’s up to the participants of the ritual to act as guides and teachers along this transition. Willow even “earned her wings” as pictures below. These represent the wings of the Goddess Isis as She protectively watches over those who call upon and honor Her.
This Earth Day is also a huge evolution for Shahara who has been a mother to all who have come to Deeply Rooted. There isn’t a time I remember when Shahara hasn’t gone out of her way to support, nurture and watch over children of all ages in the community as well as some adults to boot! Willow is the last of Shahara’s five children so it was also important to call upon Isis and Hathor to help mom through this process as well. Shahara was given a ankh-shaped mirror to represent the Goddess Hathor and Her ability to help women transform themselves during challenging times in life.
We also had many crafts to keep us entertained as the weekend progressed. Shahara was kind enough to bring needle felting books and materials so that both adults and children could be involved. We also had a small talk on Egyptian cartouches, their use in ancient history and their relevance in our lives today. Each attendee of the Women’s Weekend got to make something out of polymer clay and bake it in the oven to take home and put on their own personal altars.
Spring is in full swing at Deeply Rooted! Animals are out in force and a multitude of birds are quickly making their appearances known to all. As you can see from the photos below, it’s starting to get much warmer out and also quite a bit muddy! A small lake has formed just east of the plum grove and is quickly spreading during the spring thaw. If you plan on attending our Beltane celebration, make sure to bring enough clothes for a quick change and some galoshes!
I want to extend my thanks to my Sisters (Stephanie Martens, Shahara LeFay, Willow LeFay, Brandi Pearson and Willow Rayne) for such an exceptional Women’s Weekend! Even a small gathering of Pagans can be a memorable one.