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Lustration of the Ancestors
Sacred Sea Temple, Georgia, USA
April 13 - 15 Year 12 Aq.




Above: Rt. Rev. Terry Power, Rev. Liz Hamilton, and Rev. Alyssa Maxon display three of the heraldic banners that Rev. Alyssa created and presented during the weekend. These banners are for Rev. Terry, Lady Krystel the retired First Priestess of the Tradition, and Rev. Don. There were also banners for new First Priestess Lady Traci and for Sacred Sea Temple itself.

The Lustration of the Ancestors for Year 12 Aq. was hosted by Sacred Sea Temple of Powder Springs GA. Lady Stephanie and her people did a wonderful job with the Lustration, as they do with everything they undertake, and a great time was had by all!
 


Above: Some of the diners at Friday night's feast!

As usual people began arriving several days before Lustration weekend actually began, eager for the chance to catch up with old friends.

The first formal event of the Lustration was a feast held on Friday night at a local Mexican restaurant. Even though not everyone had yet arrived, the Lustration feast completely filled the restaurants event room. It was a wonderful feast -the food was great but of course it was the company that made it spectacular!
 



Above: First Priestess Lady Traci and Elder Jason Highcorrell on the Deemster's Tribunal.
 

On Saturday morning we had the Temple Deeming ceremony, with Lady Traci acting as Templar Grand Deemstress, and Arch Priestess Stephanie Neal and Arch Priest Jason Highcorrell acting as Deemsters.

There were four groups up for Deeming on this occasion. All four were going for full Temple status.

Circle of Atargatis
Rev. Sande Smith, Kansas City, MO

Mystic Ancient Circle
Rev. Holly Charland, Jacksonville, FL

Temple of the Trees
Rev. Connie Blankenship, Lusby, MD

Sacred Moon Garden
Rev. Karen Kelly, San Antonio, TX
 

It has been several years since the Deemster's court was presided over by a Templar Grand Deemstress, as this role is usually fulfilled by the First Priestess or her deputy. However with Lady Krystel's retirement Rev. Don has been leading the Deemsters court in recent years.

Now that Lady Traci is acting as First Priestess the Deemster's court and the Temple making Process may see some changes.

Retired First Priestess Lady Krystel was originally expected to attend this Lustration, and many aspects of it were staged specifically in her honor, but unfortunately her health did not permit her to attend.

During the presentations that followed the Deeming on Saturday afternoon, Lady Stephanie designated a chair to represent Lady Krystel, so that she could have a visible as well as spiritual presence at the event.
 


Above: L to R: Rev. Nadden Oakgrove HP of Circle of Atargatis Temple, Rev. Alyssa Maxon of Dancers of Shakti Temple and Nine Suns Shrine, Rev. Lexi Renee of Temple of Tituba, Rt. Rev. Terry Power HP CCE of Celtic Cross Temple, Rev. Liz Hamilton of Dancers of Shakti Temple, Tradition Chancellor M. Rev. Don Lewis HP CCE, Rev. Holly Charland HP of Mystic Ancient Circle Temple, Rev. Rick Keen HP of Sacred Light of South Florida Temple, Rt. Rev. Windy Lajoie HP CCE of Hooded Crone Shrine, and Rt. Rev. Jason Highcorrell HP CCE of PURE Sanctuary Temple, pose before the mantle in the great hall of Sacred Sea Temple.
 


Above: the altar as set up during the presentations on Lustration Saturday. Above hang the banners of Lord Don and retired First Priestess Lady Krystel.
 

After the Deemster's court a sumptuous luncheon was served, allowing people time to socialize and to enjoy the lovely grounds of Sacred Sea Temple. In addition to the Lewis Courtyard where many events are held and the Caroline Stage which is used for theatrical and musical productions, the Temple gardens feature many trees planted to commemorate initiation that have occurred at the Temple.

In afternoon we gathered in a gala tent erected for the occasion and hung with many banners and beautiful blue lanterns.

Among the banners that can be seen in the photos and video are a number of fine heraldic banners created by Rev. Alyssa Maxon and presented to Rev. Don, Lady Traci, Rev. Terry, Sacred Sea Temple, and one for Lady Krystel that was taken to her subsequently.
 

The banners that Rev. Alyssa presented reflect the heraldic sigils worn on the Witan robes of Correllian Temple Heads, as well as the sigils of the Temples themselves.

You can learn more about Correllian Heraldry HERE.
 

Rev. Angela Munn of Compassion League Witan Shrine acted as Mistress of Ceremonies for the afternoon's presentations.

The first speaker of the day was Rev. Don, First Priest and Chancellor of the Tradition.

Rev. Don spoke about a variety of things, including the importance of diversity to the Tradition. Rev. Don feels that as a global Tradition, the only truly global Tradition in Western Paganism, it is vital for Correllians to embrace the diverse languages, ethnicities, and cultures that now make up our Tradition family. This splendid diversity enriches our Tradition, and will only increase as we continue to develop around the world.

You can see Rev. Don's presentation here:

http://youtu.be/LebUqQXUdWE
 


Above: Tradition Chancellor Rev. Don speaks on Lustration Saturday.


Above: First Priestess M. Rev. Traci Logan Wood speaks on Lustration Saturday.

The next speaker was Lady Traci. This was Lady Traci's first major appearance as the Tradition's new First Priestess, and for many people it was their first chance to meet her. Although Lady Traci has been a member of the Council of Elders for ten years, being acclaimed an Elder in Year 2 Aq., she has rarely attended Lustrations.

You can see Lady Traci's
presentation here:
http://youtu.be/LwODsE1b0yA
 

Preceding each presentation was a song or dance offered by the Sacred Sea Temple performers. Sacred Sea maintains a high commitment to the arts, and this was evident throughout the weekend.

Songs offered by the Sacred Sea Temple performers included "The Flower that Shattered The Stone" and "I've Put A Spell On You!" among many others.



Above: Lady Stephanie and Lord Don listen to speakers on Lustration Saturday. Above hangs the banner of Arch Priest Terry Power.
 


Rev. Lillie Greene dances between presentations on Lustration Saturday.

In addition solo and group vocals, there was also a great deal of dance offered by Rev. Lillie Greene who presented traditional belly dance with a modern styling. The performances added tremendously to everyone's enjoyment of the day!

The next presenter was Arch Priestess Stephanie Neal, Head of Sacred Sea Temple. Lady Stephanie presented a meditation inspired by and dedicated to Lady Krystel, retired First Priestess of the Tradition. This meditation took us to the banks of the Vermilion river and the ancestral homeland of the Correllian Tradition to seek guidance of the Ancestors. It was a powerful meditation and several people had significant visions during it.

Lady Krystel had originally planned to personally proclaim Lady Stephanie the new Head of the Order of Worldwalkers this weekend. Since Lady Krystel was unable to attend, Rev. Don made the announcement on her behalf during the Lustration ceremony.

You can see Lady Stephanie's presentation here: http://youtu.be/zJSgZlB9Gxs

 


Above: Arch Priestess Rt. Rev. Stephanie Neal, Lady of the Sacred Sea, speaking on Lustration Saturday.


Above: Rev. Mandy Haecker sings "I've Put a Spell on You" on Lustration Saturday.

Next Arch Priestess Green Owl spoke on the subject of "Harm None" and the importance of proper action and behavior in life. We have all seen the damage that can occur when people fail to consider the consequences of their actions, or cease to care whom the hurt. Families, communities, even whole nations are torn apart by bad behavior on a regular basis. This is why we have the Wiccan Rede -that we may be mindful of the consequences of our actions and avoid causing harm.

Of course the Correllian understanding of the Wiccan Rede, itself a corollary to the centuries old Law of Thelema, is that "Harm" must be understood in the ordinary sense of the word -what we would normally mean by "harm" in conversation, and not any more extreme version of the word.
 

The next speaker was Arch Priest Terry Power, who spoke on the subject of "Perfect Love and Perfect Trust".

Rev. Terry explains that when we speak of "Perfect Love and Perfect Trust" we are not pretending that disagreements do not happen or that bad behaviors do not occur. Rather we are saying that we can trust people and situations to always be who and what they truly are, and must love them where we find them. Things are not always as we wish them to be, but there is always a place for love.

You can see Rev. Terry's presentation here: http://youtu.be/m4nQtuCJEJM

Right: Arch Priest Rt. Rev. Terry Power speaks during Lustration Saturday.
 

 


Above: Rev. Bradley Knebel leads the Sacred Sea Temple Singers in a musical number at the end of Saturday's presentations.

The presentations ended with a rousing musical number by the Sacred Sea Temple performers and a formal procession onto the lanai, during which Lady Krystel's chair was carried in state.
 

On the lanai followed line dancing and general merriment.

After a break, we reassembled at the Caroline stage for a play created and performed by Sacred Sea Temple members.

Named for Tradition founder Caroline High Correll, the Caroline stage was build by Rev. Mike Neal and has been the site of many concerts and other entertainments.
 


Above: Lady Traci line dancing on the lanai after the presentations.

"The Correllian Dedicant Picture Show"



Above: The stars of "The Correllian Dedicant Picture Show" L to R: Becca Bohnke, Maxine Sims, Trina Williamson, and Bradley Knebel, on the Caroline Stage at Sacred Sea Temple.

The play was called "The Correllian Dedicant Picture Show" and was written and directed by Rev. Lillie Greene.

The play chronicled the adventures and misadventures encountered by four Dedicants during their year and a day or Dedication.
 

One Dedicant had to face the decision to come out of the closet or not. Another had to deal with a romantic partner who did not allow her space to live her own life. Another Dedicant had to deal with her own issues of unworthiness and scars left over from a previous group she had been involved in. And another Dedicant, charged with orchestrating a similar entertainment, had to learn that allowing others to shine was just as important and ultimately just as fulfilling as his own "artistic vision".

It was a great play, featuring numerous musical numbers, and we all enjoyed it very much! Congratulations on a job well done to Rev. Lillie Greene and all of the Sacred Sea Performers!
 


Above: A scene from the play, showing Becca Bohnke and Mandy Haecker.

After the play came initiations. The presiding Clergy gathered in the gala tent while those being initiated were set to meditate. Those who were not involved in the meditations held a drum and dance circle in the Lewis Courtyard.

The initiations of course cannot be described, lest we ruin the experience for future initiates. But the ceremony was wonderful and it is always a tremendous pleasure to welcome new people to the Tradition, and to witness people's progression within it. Congratulations to all new Dedicants and Initiates!



Above: Partial group photo, after initiations on Saturday night. L to R: Rev. Alyssa Maxon, Rev. Angela Munn, Jessica Dunn, Rev. Liz Hamilton, Trina Williamson, Rev. Don Lewis, Rev. Phoenix Firestar Rising, Rev. Terry Power, Rev. Anthony Bravi, Rev. Laurie Denman, Rev. Holly Charland, and Rev. Sheila Long.

After the initiations we all joined in the dance and drum circle that had been going on at that point for several hours. The circle had begun at dusk, but went far into the night. Not only constant drumming, but frequent singing and dancing made the drum and dance circle a very festive and enjoyable occasion.

Despite the Georgia heat a small bonfire burned in the center of the circle, and throughout the night people would spontaneously dance around this.

 


Above: As darkness descends on Saturday night, the drum and dance circle begins.

Perhaps the most striking performances of the evening were the fire dancers, who only began to perform late in the evening. Dancing with fire poi or with lighted firebrands, they lit up the night with their exciting movements.
 


Above: The Fire dancers begin to perform during the Drum and dance circle.
 
Especially memorable was Rev. Holy Charland, whose elegant and energetic dance featured flaming fire fans -a sight not soon to be forgot.

The drum and dance circle went long into the night -but not too long because we all knew we had to be up early the next morning. One thing about Lustrations is that they are extremely highly scheduled events. Because a Lustration weekend offers so little real time, we pack as much into the time we have as we can!

Right: Rev. Holly fire dances at the drum circle, on Saturday night after initiations.



 



Above: Arch Priest Terry Power in the gardens of Sacred Sea Temple
 
Sunday morning of course came the actual Lustration ceremony itself. The Lustration ceremony is the high point of every Lustration weekend, because it is this that everyone has come for.

The pageantry of robes and sigils and coronets is grand of course, but it is the act of coming together to commune with the Beloved Ancestors, to ask and receive their blessing, and to symbolically extend that blessing and the Ancestors protection to every member of the Tradition that is the heart of the proceedings.

And so we gathered in the Lewis courtyard, lining up for the formal entry procession.


Rev. Mike Neal acted as Guardian for the ceremony, which began as always with a formal procession, during which musical accompaniment was provided by the talented Becca Bonkhe.

Sacred Sea Temple excels in the arts, and brought all of their formidable talents to bear in this ceremony, which featured more dance and song than any previous Lustration. As always, Sacred Sea raises the bar in all it does.

When everyone had entered the sacred space, Rev. Lillie Greene enacted a special dance to begin the cleansing of the energy.

 




Above: An opening dance by Rev. Lillie Greene.
 

Next came the Cleansing and blessing. Katell Desormeaux enacted the cleansing and Matt Haecker the blessing, creating a very beautiful and unique impression, using energetic techniques from Eastern martial arts.



Above: Matt Haecker and Katell Desormeaux bless the elements.
 


 


Correllian Elders Rt. Rev. Windy Lajoie and Rt. Rev. Jason Highcorrell acted as Junovocator and Genovocator, linking the First Priestess and First Priest with their Archetypes.

Rev. Don and Lady Traci then invoked the Quarters using the Invocation of the Seventy Gods.

Rev. Mandy Haecker, Rev. Cindi Tempestwolf, Maxine Sims and Katherine Causey acted as Quarter Guardians.

Left: The Quarter Guardians dance.
 




Above: Rev. Angela Munn of Compassion League Witan Shrine acts as Rite Lector.
 

Rev. Angela Munn acted as Rite Lector, performing the first part of the Charge of the Goddess -the older part which comes from the Vangelo delle Streghe.

Rev. Bradley Knebel and Becca Bohnke then performed the second part of the Charge through interpretive dance, portraying the eternal dance of Goddess and God before enacting the Great Rite.

Right: Becca Bohnke and Rev. Bradley Knebel enact the Joint Charge of Goddess and God through interpretive dance.


 




Above: Rev. Holly Charland of Mystic Ancient Circle Temple, and Arch Priest Terry Power of Celtic Cross Temple.


Tradition Chancellor M. Rev. Don Lewis brought through the Oracle of the Ancestors and the Blessing of the Ancestors upon the Lustral Water. As is traditional the Lustral Water had been ceremonially collected from the Vermilion River by members of PURE Sanctuary Temple, in Danville, Illinois, and brought to Sacred Sea by Rt. Rev. Jason Highcorrell Head of PURE Sanctuary.

Arch Priest Terry Power led the actual rite of lustration, in which the Blessing of the Ancestors is conveyed to all members of the Tradition, past and present, through the medium of the Lustral Water as it is aspersed through the Four Directions.
 


Above: Partial group photo after the Lustration ceremony, with the Sacred Sea Temple building in the background.

A number of announcements took place during the toast, including the outcome of the weekend's Temple Deeming:
 


Circle of Atargatis of Kansas City, MO, Headed by Rev. Sande Smith, was translated to full Temple status.

Mystic Ancient Circle of Jacksonville, FL, Headed by Rev. Holly Charland, was translated to full Temple status.

Temple of the Trees of Lusby, MD, Headed by Rev. Connie Blankenship, was translated to full Temple status.

Sacred Moon Garden of San Antonio, TX, Headed by Rev. Karen Kelly, was translated to full Temple status.

May the Blessing be upon all of these new Temples and all their works!
 



Above: Rev. Holly Charland of Ancient Mystic Circle Temple, Jacksonville, Florida, which was Deemed a Full Temple during the weekend, poses with First Priest Rev. Don and First Priestess Lady Traci after the ceremony.

Also, as is our custom, a number of Awards were also given at this time. These included:

Rev. Lexi Renee  of the Temple of Tituba, Massachusetts, who was awarded the Order of the Copper Athame

Rev. Richard Keen HP
, of the Temple of Sacred Light, Florida, who was awarded the Order of the Copper Athame
 



Above: Rev. Laurie Denman, of Mystic Ancient Circle Temple, Florida, wears one of the butterflies
given out at Sunday's feast in remembrance
of last year's "Feast of the Butterflies".  Rev. Laurie was awarded the Order of the Golden Wand during the Lustration ceremony.

 


Rev. Laurie Denman
of Mystic Ancient Circle Temple, Florida, who was awarded the Order of the Golden Wand

Rev. Faemore Lorei
of Altar of the Arcane Song Formal Shrine, Barbados, who was awarded the Order of the Golden Wand

Rev. Lillie Greene of Sacred Sea Temple who was awarded the Order of the Silver Chalice

Rev. Bradley Knebel of Sacred Sea Temple who was awarded the Order of the Silver Chalice

Rev. Alyssa Maxon of Nine Suns Witan Shrine and Dancers of Shakti Temple, New York, who was awarded the Order of the Silver Chalice
 


All in all the Lustration of the Ancestors for Year 12 Aq. was a wonderful event enjoyed by everyone who attended. Thank you to Rt. Rev. Stephanie Neal and all the good people of Sacred Sea Temple for all of their hard work in creating such a positive and memorable event!


Putting on a Lustration is never an easy thing. There are tremendous challenges in organizing all of the events that go into a Lustration weekend, rehearsing for plays and music and of course the Lustration ceremony itself, not to mention the difficulty of co-ordinating things when so many participants are coming from so far away.
 



Above: First Priest Rev. Don, Rev. Phoenix Firestar Rising, and First Priestess Lady Traci

 




Above: L to R: Rev. Holly Charland of Mystic Ancient Circle Temple, Florida, First Priest Rev. Don, Rev. Janice Christian of Children of Gaia Temple, Florida, and First Priestess lady Traci. Behind is Wesley.
 



Above: First Priest Rev. Don Lewis, Rev. Richard Keen, First Priestess Lady Traci
 


The Lustration of the Ancestors for Year 13 will be hosted by Clan of Kheper Temple, in Capetown, South Africa. This will be the second Correllian Lustration to be held outside of the United States, reflecting the global character of our Tradition.

Clan of Kheper will hold the Lustration of the Ancestors on 26 - 29 April, Year 13 Aq. For more information see
http://www.clanofkhepertemple.co.za/

We are sure that Rt. Rev. Raene Packery and the people of Clan of Kheper will do a magnificent job and are looking forward to the event! There will also be a kick-off event at Children of Gaia Temple in Florida.
 



Above: Rt. Rev. Stephanie Neal, M. Rev. Don Lewis, Rev. Bradley Knebel, and M. Rev. Traci Logan Wood, pose near the side entrance of Sacred Sea Temple. The Caroline Stage is visible beyond the "Sacred Sea Temple" sign.