Samhain 2005
Raven’s Cry Grove, ADF
All text, songs & chants written by Pamela Basham
(Except where indicated)

Call to Rite

Sound three mighty calls of the horn

Outdwellers

Shining Lugh, Righteous King
At Samhain of old you fought to bring
Peace to land and folk

Child of order and of strife
You ward the balance of the two
That forms and fosters life

So, Lugh Lamhfada, Long-Armed One
We light this flame and ask that you
Reach forth for us and guard this rite
Until our work is done.

Bíodh sé amhlaidh.


Procession

Chant:
“We approach the sacred grove
With hearts and minds and flesh and bone
Join us now in ways of old
We have come home” (1)

Introduction

Presiding Druid (PD) will offer an introduction to Samhain and the work of the rite.

Awen

PD:
Please join us as we pray to Brigid, goddess of inspiration, that our words and work may be strong and true.

Sing:
“Brigid, Bright Lady
We call on you now
You keep the fires of hearth and heart
Inspire us now with your bright presence
Your children call to you.”


Call For Peace/Honoring Earth Mother

Druid calls: Shall there be peace in the East?
The people respond: Let there be peace.
Druid: May peace in the East bring us prosperity.

Druid calls: Shall there be peace in the South?
The people respond: Let there be peace.
Druid: May peace in the South bring us harmony.

Druid calls: Shall there be peace in the West?
The people respond: Let there be peace.
Druid: May peace in the West bring us wisdom.

Druid calls: Shall there be peace in the North?
The people respond: Let there be peace.
Druid: May peace in the North bring us strength.

Druid:
And here in the Center,
I raise our prayer…

Earth Mother, Green Goddess, Mother of the Waters—
From you we are formed, To you we return.
We are joined in unity as your children.
Your bounty provides for us,
Your beauty inspires us,
Your love blesses us all.

(Druid offers grain or other offering to the Earth.)

Danu, Anu, Aïne,
Great Queen, we honor you.
Accept our offering and hear our prayer.
By the power of your sovereignty,
May peace rule our rite.

Bíodh sé amhlaidh.

Three Hallows

PD: In the time before, our ancestors wandered, seeking a home. And when they found a place of safety and bounty, they claimed it by land and sea and sky. First, they set a great tree or pole in that place, and established it as the nemeton—the sacred center. They honored the local water source as a source of life for the people and the crops. And they built their fires for light and heat and safety in the night.

In this ancient tradition, we consecrate our grove.

Three druids come together in center to gather items for offering, and then move simultaneously to the three hallows. (Offerings are then made as each druid speaks, one at a time.)

Tree
I invoke the Sacred Tree,
Hallow of Unity.
Root, trunk and branch;
Ancient One of shelter and strength, and Center of the Worlds.
In the depths of your roots, you know what we have been
In the heights of your branches, you know what we hope to be.
Gift of the gods,
Both connected and connecting,
Become for us now what you have been of old—
Our Path through all the Worlds.

Sacred Tree, grow within us!
People respond: Sacred Tree, grow within us!

Well
I invoke the Sacred Well,
Hallow of the Deepest Wisdom.
River, Lake and Sea;
Water womb and Lifeblood of the earth.
In your stillness, we see visions;
In your flow, we move from what was to what will be.
Gift of the gods,
Both created and creator,
Become for us now what you have been of old—
Our Door to the Mysteries.

Sacred Well, flow within us!
People respond: Sacred Well, flow within us!

Fire
I invoke the Sacred Fire,
Hallow of Transformation.
Hearth fire, wildfire, candle’s glow,
Flame of inspiration, heat of passion and Light of the world.
In your heat we are tempered;
By your illumination we find our way.
Gift of the gods,
Both transformed and transformer,
Become for us now what you have been of old—
Our Voice calling to the Shining Ones.

Sacred fire, burn within us!
People respond: Sacred fire, burn within us!


The three druids come back together in center and say in unison:
Thus we claim this place and time
And consecrate our grove
Above, below and in this world
by sky and sea and land.

Sanctify Participants

PD:
As we have prepared our gates, let us now center and cleanse ourselves in readiness for our sacred work.

Druids pass around the grove with earth (from the tree), water (from the well) and fire (incense lit from the fire) to cleanse the participants.

Chant:
Sky to sea and sea to land
The Three Realms weave together
Land to sky and sky to sea
In sacred unity

We stand
We stand
In sacred unity

We stand
We stand
In sacred unity

Open Gates

PD: Our gates are set and we are ready. We call now on our Gatekeeper, Mannanan mac Lir, to empower our gates and open our way to the Otherworlds.

Druid:
Druid may approach and/or “charge” the three hallows during the call, if desired.
Mannanan, we call you
To guide us on the hidden paths
And ward us as we work.

Come, Gatekeeper
Come Sidhe king
Come, Mannanan mac Lir.

Come wave rider
Come mist walker
Come weaver of the veil

Come gray-cloaked Guide
Come sea Prince
Come Lord of the blessed Isle

Mannanan, we call you
Come, come, come… (or repeat “Mannanan”)
(All repeat “come…” as appropriate until final call)

Mannanan, let the gates be open!


Three Kindred

Ancestors
The children of the earth call out to the mighty dead.
Hear us, our ancestors, our kindred.

To all those whose bones lie in this land, whose hearts are tied to it,
Ancient tribes of this place, we offer you welcome.

To all of our own beloved dead, blood-kin and heart-kin;
Ancient tribes of our blood, we offer you welcome.

To all those elder wise ones who guide the people,
Wise women and men of ancient days, we offer you welcome.

Druid makes offering of ale
Ancestors, we give you honor and praise, and ask that you join us here this night.
Ancestors, accept our sacrifice!

All: Ancestors, accept our sacrifice!


Nature Spirits
The children of the earth call out to the spirits of the land.
Hear us, companions and teachers.

To all our allies of stone and stream, crystal and soil, pools and water;
Kin of the earth, we offer you welcome.

To all our allies of the growing green, herb and flower, shrub and tree
Green kin, we offer you welcome.

To all our allies of fur and feather and scale,
all who walk or fly or swim or crawl, we offer you welcome.

Druid makes an offering <br> Nature spirits, we give you honor and praise, and ask that you join us here this night.
Nature spirits, accept our sacrifice!

All: Nature spirits, accept our sacrifice!


Deities
The children of earth call out to the shining ones.
Hear us, eldest and brightest.

To all the shining ones, first children of the mother, wisest and mightiest,
gods and goddesses, we offer you welcome.

To the gods and goddesses of this place, ancient and powerful, known to us or unknown;
powers of this place, we offer you welcome.

To all the deities of those here gathered, you whom we worship, you who bless our lives;
patrons and matrons, we offer you welcome.

Druid makes an offering and says:
Gods and Goddesses, we give you honor and praise, and ask that you join us here this night.
Gods and Goddesses, accept our sacrifice!

All: Gods and Goddesses, accept our sacrifice! (2)


Offerings

Special Offering for Katrina Victims and the Year’s Honored Dead

Chant/Dance:
Might Dead, we call you
Beloved Ones, we come
Across the Veil

(Repeat verse)

Oh-o-o
Oh-o-o

Offering of rosemary wreath


Praise Offerings
Handfasting


Main Offering
Meditation
Offering
(Pass out hazelnuts to the assembled folk)


Ogham
Ritual omen

Special omen


Blessing Cup

Druid: (PD)
We have offered to the Shining Ones and the Ancestors and the Kindred of our love and work, and they have received it full well.

Now the flow returns to us. As the sea ebbs and flows from shore to shore, as a filled cup overflows to fill another, so the cycle of blessing turns and returns.

As we have given to the Shining Ones, so now they give to us. Now the Dagda, the Great Father, stirs his sacred cauldron for us—the great cauldron of Mystery, of Plenty and of Rebirth. Now the waters of life pour forth, that the people may prosper in wisdom, strength, health and abundance.

Children of the Earth, in this moment of the favor of the Kindred, you are offered a boon!
What shall it be?
Consider for a moment what you would receive as your blessing.

[pause for silent moment]

Shining Ones, Ancestors, Kindred, we have honored you here this night, and ask that you honor us in turn. Pour forth your blessings into these waters, that we may drink and return to the world renewed in your love.

Children of the Earth, shall we receive the blessings of the gods?

The people respond.

BEHOLD, THE WATERS OF LIFE!

Drink now from the blessings of the Three Kindred, in peace and fellowship!

The Libation

PD:
What blessings remain, we offer again to an Cailleach, Earth Mother and Crone.
May they bless and sustain you, Lady, until you are renewed at Beltaine.

Thanking the Powers

PD:
We have met the kindred in love and honor and joy.
We have worked really hard. ;-)
So have they honored us with their mighty deeds in return.

An Cailleach and all the Shining Ones, Kindred, Ancestors,
Mannanan, Earth Mother, Bright Brigid and Shining Lugh,
To all those spirits and powers that have aided our rite…

WE THANK YOU!

The people respond: We thank you!

Mighty ones, we will carry our love and gratitude with us as we go forth from this place.


Close Gates

PD:
PD will give brief lead-in to closing gates.

Druid:
Gatekeeper, we call again
Mannanan, we ask you
To weave once more the veil that you
Have parted for our rite.
Though at Samhain it be thin
Our work beyond is done.

Mannanan…
(Druid may lead in repeating name or toning, and/or “discharge” hallows, if desired)

Let the gates be closed!


End Ritual

PD:
The wheel turns, and turns again
What was, will be,
What is given is received,
What we began, we now end
To begin again another day.

(Three mighty calls of the horn)

Brothers and Sisters, the rite is ended! Go forth in peace and joy and blessing!
Let the feast begin!



(1) Processional chant: words, Sean Miller; tune, traditional
[see: http://www.adf.org/rituals/chants/processional/we-approach-the-sacred-grove.html]
(2) Invocations to Three Kindred, condensed from original by Anthony R. Thompson
[see: http://www.adf.org/rituals/celtic/samhain/art-samhain.html]