Sunday, December 21, 2014

Secular Year-End Wrap-Up for 2014


It's been a long time.  Sorry about that.  So today, we have a bit of a catch-up post.  Here is a quick run-down of the festivals we've celebrated over the last few months.

In July, we celebrated the Panathanaia.

In August, we celebrated Founder's Festival.

In September, we had our Fall Festival.

During October, the Temple went on a retreat of sorts as a group.  No pictures from that to share.
November saw the celebration of the Panaia, which also has no pictures..
And December opened with the Dendraia ....

... and today we celebrated the Haloa/Kheimonia, Poseidea, and Pompaia.


Coming up in January will be the Diogennia on January 4, Hephaistia on January 11, and Gamelia/Theogamia on January 25.
Happy (secular) New Year!

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Year-End/Beginning Catch-up Post


Sorry for the second long hiatus.  The Temple has been busy as Spring has flowed into Summer, but the blog has not kept up.

Recent Rituals


In April, we celebrated the Delphinia, honoring Apollon Delphinios with offerings including the decoratively wrapped stick you can see resting on the altar.


Later in April, we celebrated the Hermaia, a festival of games in honor of Hermes.  Sorry for the lack of pictures.


The pharmokos ritual was held indoors, with the pharmakos then burned in the hearth.
The remainder of the ritual was conducted out of doors.



And now we come to this weekend!  The Great Noumenia or Anadikia, the start of the Athenian New Year.  As usual, this was a three-day retreat in the Temple space. 

As you can see from the program, there were several scheduled events
and some free periods to allow for freshly-inspired work to be done.

On Friday evening, we started with the DiiSoteria thanking all the Gods for the blessings of the year that has just ended. Then, the Deipnon, honoring Hekate, Hermes, and the ancestors.  Candles from the hearth of each participant were used throughout the weekend, and in this picture, we see Hekate "holding" these fires during the ancestor work.
Our crossroads Ancestor Altar, with offerings to the ancestors as well as offerings to Hekate of canned goods that will be donated to a food pantry.
Once the rituals were completed, we had a movie night (consisting of the first two episodes of Neverwhere) as a way to incorporate drama into our worship. 
The next morning began with divinatory work to determine
 the God of the year and the Gods of each month.

The Temple statues were cleansed for the New Year,
and a candle dedicated to carry our New Year's wishes to the Gods.

An outdoor ritual was then conducted to honor Them and to welcome the New Year.  This was followed with a New Year's cookout, basics of Hellenismos class.  The evening was spent playing games in honor of Hermes.

Our final day started with a Symposium for Hera,
followed by a ritual to the Agathos Daimon of the Temple and those of each of our homes. 
We then had our traditional brunch and a closing ritual to Hestia.

All of the proceedings were guarded, of course, not only by our various Agathos Daimons
but also by our faithful (if not terribly fierce) Temple Dog Toby.
We also worked out the calendar for the year ahead. 
That will be posted separately, as this is getting a bit long.
Until next time, may the Gods' blessings be upon you,

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Aphrodisia, Diasia, Eiarinia, and Zeus Xenios 2014


Sorry for the long hiatus.  Today we have a bit of a catch-up post.

Recent Rituals


On February 16, we celebrated the Aphrodisia at a new location.

One of newly ordained members, Scarlet Rose, led the ritual in which we honored Aphrodite as Goddess of love and beauty.  As part of the ritual, we planted bleeding hearts and rosemary, which will be utilized in another ritual this summer.

Diasia & Eiarinia

This year we celebrated both these festivals together.

For the Diasia, in honor of Zeus Melikhios, we offered our thanks for His protection through the winter and took up a collection of stuffed animals for Project Smile in honor of His love of and protection over children.

As part of the Eiarinia, we created and dedicated a new "Earth Shrine."

Festival of Zeus Xenios

Today, we celebrated a new festival in honor of Zeus Xenios, celebrating xenia (hospitality) towards the various other Gods and Goddesses of other pantheons. 

This festival was celebrated in the "ecumenical space" just outside the main Temple space.  While "the calling of the directions" is not a part of traditional Hellenic ritual, due to the nature of this ritual, we did something similar, lighting incense and candles specifically for the Deities of the North, South, East, and West.  As a first-time festival, it was a simple one, but ideas were floated for future years, such as making flags to represent various nations/cultures, or presenting poems or other devotional works to those Deities specifically honored by participants.

Coming Up

April 13, 2014Hermaia
April 27, 2014Delphinia
May 25, 2014Thargelia

Until next time.


Sunday, February 2, 2014

Anthesteria 2014



Today's Festival

Today, we celebrated the Anthesteria at HTAZP.

While the festival is traditionally observed over the course of three days, we compressed this community celebration into a single festival day in three parts. The festival was led by Hiereus Peregrine Ursano.  Above, we see Dionysos with a picture of Ariadne and a plaque of Semele.

For the first component, Peregrine led us in the story of Dionysos' birth, including the myth of Zagreus, after which we processed into the main temple space and made the first round of offerings followed by theoxenia and painting masks for Dionysos representing the things that bring us joy.

Next, Peregrine shared the story of Dionysos and Ariadne. For this second "day," we offered sweets and wine, which we then shared as well.

Finally, in honor of the third day, an altar was set up for reminders of our ancestors.  To commemorate the day that Dionysos went to Hades to rescue Semele and bring Her to Olympus, leaving the gates open so that the dead returned to walk the Earth, we shared stories of the ancestors we had chosen to honor.  Once this was done, we "transported" them back to Hades' realm, with offerings of food and wine.

Representations of the ancestors not included in the above picture.  Left to right are Hermes, Hades, Persephone, and Hekate.

Coming Up

16 Diasion/16 February 2014Aphrodisia
30 Diasion/2 March 2014Diasia
14 Eiarinion/16 March 2014Eiarinia
28 Eiarinion/30 March 2014TBD

Of particular note, Aphrodisia will be celebrated by Scarlet Rose at a new private temple space.

Also, for Diasia, we will be once again collecting stuffed animals to donate to Project Smile in honor of Zeus Melikhios.  As we discovered that an event called the Annual Melee of Kindness is happening the day before, we are looking into expanding this practice beyond simply donating stuffed animals ourselves to teaming up with others to bring even more smiles to children who have been through traumatic events.  Watch this space for further details.  Or, if you would like to participate, please drop a comment or an email.

Until next time.


Sunday, January 19, 2014

January 2014


This Month's Festivals

This month has been a very Zeus-themed month.  First, we celebrated the Diogennia on January 5th, and today was the Gamelia

Gamelia Altar

For both events, all the Gods were invoked, and so this is a pretty image-heavy edition. The majority of the following images are from Diogennia, courtesy of Scarlet Rose.

Asklepios and Hygeia

Agathos Daimon








Gaia and the Gods of Earth, Sky, and Sea

Ganymede and Herakles

Gods of the Year and Month: Prometheus and Selene

Hades and Persephone



Hera (on Diogennia)


Hestia (on Diogennia)


Zeus Melikhios

For Diogennia, we consecrated candles to represent the light of Zeus, which is said to help us bring balance and order to our lives.

And of course, for Gamelia, we offered wedding cake as part of the feast.

It seemed fitting that, as with any royal wedding, there would be ambassadors from other lands to bring their well-wishes. Therefore, we also set aside an area for Foreign Gods, which was designated as "The Embassy." 

Coming Up

2 Diasion/2 February 2014Anthesteria (observed)
16 Diasion/16 February 2014Aphrodisia
30 Diasion/2 March 2014Diasia
14 Eiarinion/16 March 2014Eiarinia
28 Eiarinion/30 March 2014TBD

Until next time.