This evening, the Druids in Columbus, Ohio (and the surrounding area) gathered together to offer sacrifice to the Three Kindreds, and especially to Brigando.
The Three Cranes Imbolc ritual has been done unchanged for five straight years. While even our anniversary ritual has been done differently, this rite has remained the same. The ritual didn’t even go back for changes when ADF approved a new Core Order of Ritual.
There is also no more popular rite that our Grove does. While I always thought that this was because everyone likes Imbolc, and our space is nice, and we really do have a killer rite that’s well-written and enjoyable, I realized while I was discussing our purpose and precedent for this rite that it’s not about the ritual, but about the central goddess it celebrates.
As I spoke about who Brigando was, beginning with calling her “lady of fire” and continuing on with “midwife of the year, and all of us,” and describing how she is a goddess of smithcraft, fertility, and healing, I realized why so many people come out to Imbolc.
Everyone, it seems, needs Brigando for something.
Those who need fertility, whether it’s physical or creative, will come to worship her. Those who need guidance in obtaining a new job, holding their existing one, or meeting challenges in the workplace will call out to her. Those who are in need of healing, or thankful for healing provided, will bring her sacrifice and honour.
As Grove Priest, I have been listening to my Grove’s needs. They center very much around these things right now. Many people are dealing with situations at work that frighten them, or are seeking new jobs. Many people, both within the Grove and attending our rites, are in need of healing. Nearly all of us are involved in something creative and difficult that needs clarity and inspiration.
Each of us came together tonight and made offerings, if not as individuals, as a Grove. In doing so, we shared our wishes for healing, fertility, and work that would take us where we wanted to go. We blessed our tools and found inspiration and support all around us.
Our omens have been reflective of our work in this direction, too. New beginnings have been promised in two rituals now, and fertility and cleansing are given as our course. It seems that the Kindreds are offering us new chances, and opening new avenues for us on a daily basis. We are leaving behind old shells and emerging, newly formed into the world around us, a world full of potential and the chance to make it what we need it to be.
Brigando and the Kindreds have indeed blessed us this night, as they do every day of our lives. Let us take these blessings and ensure that we use them to their fullest extent, to their fullest potential, and let us never forget to thank the Kindreds for all they do for us.
-Rev. Michael J Dangler