Lustration of the Ancestors
March 29 - 30, Year 3 Aquarius
The Lustrations of Year 2 Aquarius were held at PURE Sanctuary Temple in Westville, Illinois: in Year 3 Aquarius the Lustrations were held at Akasha Temple in Kankakee, Illinois.
In all cases of course the Lustrations are held by the Mother Temple, but the ceremony has been hosted by other Temples since the Mother Temple does not at this time have dedicated space of its own.
(Near the end of Year 3 Aquarius The Mother Temple did acquire dedicated space of its own in the Witchschool.com campus in Hoopeston, Illinois)
Rev. Ruthann Amarteifio, HPS, of Akasha Temple provided a beautiful location for this Lustration -a secluded camping lodge overlooking the Kankakee river.
This year for the first time the Lustration became a two-day event, with a number of collateral activities involved. Many people chose to attend both days and slept over Saturday night in the lodge's comfortable rooms. Others joined us Sunday morning for the Lustration ceremony itself.
Saturday a number of presentations were offered through the day, and lively discussions ensued. Between presentations was social time to allow people to get to know each other.
evening Initiatory Confirmations were held for a number of people. The
Correllian Tradition recognizes Self-Initiation, but encourages its
members to have real-time Initiatory Confirmations when possible. To
facilitate this, we offer Initiatory Confirmations at as many events as
Among those who had Initiatory Confirmations at this Lustration were Rev. Aine Massie, Head of Crystalline Star Shrine (Cincinnati, Ohio), Rev. Mike McBride, Head of Sacred Waters Shrine (Sault Ste Marie, Michigan), Rev. Karen Plioplys, Head of Triple Goddess Shrine (Wheaton, Illinois), and Rev. Green Owl, Head of Trianna Shrine (St. Louis, Missouri).
Left: Rev. Aine Massie, Rev. MIke McBride, and Rev. Karen Plioplys hold candles after the ceremony.
After the Initiations came the Deemster's Court. In Correllian parlance a Deemster is an investigator or judge appointed by the Tradition. In this case the Deemsters are appointed to review Witan Shrines and decide if they are suitable for full Temple status.
All potential new Temples must now spend at least one year as Witan Shrines as a kind of probationary period. This rule was created in Year 2 Aquarius.
This was the first time that Deemsters had actually been appointed to review Witan Shrines, and the first Shrines to be reviewed were the Shrine of LaVeda in Australia, the Crystalline Star Shrine in Cincinnati, Ohio, and the Phoenix Rising Shrine in Canada.
Above right: The Initiatory Confirmations were facilitated by (standing) Rev. Stacy Paedusis, Rev. Don Lewis, Rev. Ruthann Amarteifio, (kneeling) Rev. Traci Logan-Wood, and Rev. Casey Carraher.
Ruthann of Akasha Temple was appointed Grand Deemster, and will head the
Deemster's Court at each session. The other two members of the
Deemster's Court will be drawn from among available Clergy.
Serving with lady Ruthann on this occasion were Rev. Stacy Paedusis and Rev. Karen Plioplys of Triple Goddess Witan Shrine.
Left: The Deemster's Court, L to R Rev. Stacy Paedusis, Rev. Ruthann Amarteifio, and Rev. Karen Plioplys.
Wendy Eversen of LaVeda Witan Shrine -being in Australia- submitted
written reports to the Deemsters regarding her experiences as Shrine
Keeper for LaVeda Shrine.
Rev. Aine Massie of Crystalline Star Witan Shrine appeared in person to answer the Deemster's questions and discuss her experiences running Crystalline Star.
Rev. Cat of Phoenix Rising Witan Shrine could not be reached for comment, and the opinion of all concerned was that the Shrine had folded quietly and without notifying the Tradition -proving the need for the new system.
Right: Rev. Aine discuses her experiences as a Shrine Keeper with the Deemsters.
Above: After the ceremony Lady Krystel reads Rev. Diana's report on Pagan images in Chicago architecture. Everyone agreed it was a fascinating and well-researched piece.
was no surprise then that the Deemsters ruled against Phoenix Rising and
the Shrine was formally desolved.
Both LaVeda and Crystalline Star however were approved for full Temple status, becoming the first Temples to be approved through the new process. Good work Rev. Wendy and Rev. Aine!
The next morning we were joined by First Priestess Lady Krystel and First Elder Lady Bitterwind who came up from Danville with Lady Becci of PURE Sanctuary Temple and Lady Becci's partner Shelly.
Also arriving Sunday morning was Rev. Diana from Holy City Temple.
Rev. Diana had just completed a report o Pagan images in Chicago architecture, which made fascinating reading.
While the Clergy gathered and began robing Rev. Ed Hubbard showed pictures of the new building which he was looking at for a potential Witchschool.com campus, which would also afford space to the Correll Mother Temple.
The building was located in Hoopeston, Illinois, approximately half way between Danville and Kankakee, where major Correllian Temples are located -making it an ideal central location.
Everyone agreed that the building would be ideal and admired the pictures of its stately exterior and spacious interior.
Looking at these pictures on this sunny Lustration morning we had no idea of the circuitous and controversial road that lay ahead of us in pursuit of a campus.
Right: Rev. Mike McBride in the Dress Robe of Sacred Waters Shrine.
camping lodge was one of the most beautiful settings imaginable for the
Lustration, sitting as it did just above the Kankakee river. Between
this and the beautiful weather the Elders were moved to deviate from our
normal custom and use water from the Kankakee river instead of the
Left: The procession heads out. Visible L to R are Shelly (in the background) Lady Becci, Rev. Diana, and Rev. Don
Above: The procession wends down to the river. Visible L to R are Lady Krystel in the lead (Kyle was far ahead of all the oldsters), Lady Bitterwind, Lady Becci, Rev. Don, and Rev. Diana.
Thirteen year old Kyle, son of an Akasha Temple member, was chosen to get the water for the ceremony.
This was partly because of the innocence of his age and partly in recognition that he was better able than his elders to get down to the river's edge.
the Clergy waited on a plateau near the river as young Kyle in his white
Outer Court robe ventured right up to the rivers edge to fill the sacral
Then we returned to the lodge to consecrate the water for the ceremony.
This open air procession was one of the most beautiful and memorable experiences we have had at the Lustrations.
Left: Water for the Lustration being collected from the Kankakee river
After consecrating the water be prepared for the Lustration itself.
Rev. Diana took the role of Elder's Herald -important in the Lustration of the Ancestors because the Elder's Herald calls the Ancestors in the ceremony.
Right: The procession returns from the river to the lodge. Visible in the picture are (L to R) Melissa and Meghan of Akasha Temple, Rev. Don's sleeve, Rev. Diana from Holy City Temple, First Elder Bitterwind and First Priestess Krystel.
The main aspect of the Lustration of the Ancestors is the invocation of the Ancestral Spirits, and the dispersion of their Blessing on the Tradition members.
First the holy Ancestors are called, and various offerings are made to them, notably the pink peony flowers which are sacred to the Correllian Ancestors.
Then the Ancestors are invoked to give a message through the First Priestess (the First Priest gives the oracle at the Lustration of the Living in the Fall).
The First Priestess brings through the message of the Ancestors, then channels their Blessing and the Blessing of Deity into the lustral water.
Left: The First Priestess Lady Krystel wearing the special Oracle's Crown and veil. Either the hood or a veil is worn when giving an oracle to symbolize that the channel is piercing the Veil.
The First Elder then takes the Lustral water and a sacred feather fan and asperges the Book of Life and the Temple area, to disperse the Ancestors' Blessings to all those present and all those named in the Book.
Then the First Elder takes the Lustratory Cauldron to the center of the Temple, where the Quarter Guardians join her one by one to Bless their respective Quarters.
This is the actual act of Lustration, and serves to disperse the Blessing of Deity and the Ancestors in all directions, and upon Correllians everywhere.
Left: First Elder Lady Bitterwind with the feather fan used in the Lustration.
All in all this was one of the most memorable of the Lustrations and was a very joyful weekend for everyone.
Above: A group photo showing most of the people present at the Lustration. L to R are (Standing) Rev. Mike McBride of Sacred Waters Shrine, Rev. Bitterwind, First Elder of Tradition, Rev. Don Lewis, First Priest and Joint Head of Tradition, Rev. Krystel Highcorrell, First Priestess and Joint Head of Tradition, Rev. Becci Penry, Head of PURE Sanctuary Temple, Rev. Aine Massie, Acting Head of Crystalline Star Temple, Rev. Ruthann Amarteifio, Head of Akasha Temple, Rev. Casey Carraher, cadet Priest of Akasha Temple, Melissa of Akasha Temple, and (kneeling) Rev. Diana of Holy City Temple, Meghan of Akasha Temple, Rev. Karen Plioplys, Head of Triple Goddess Shrine, and Kyle of Akasha Temple.