2018 has been a wonderful year for Dandelion Pagan Collective. It was the year of the group’s conception and the year we found a wonderful accepting home at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Tallahassee. We started in the spring as just a book group meeting at a local coffee shop. Now we’re growing and changing to be something more than that and it’s exciting.
2019 will be a big year and I want to share our plans with you. These are just Otter and I’s ideas really. We hope to get buy in and feedback from everyone in the group. We want to grow Dandelion Pagan Collective for all of us in a collaborative and inclusive way. We put the word “collective” in the name for a reason.
I hope you’re as excited as I am with what we have planned!
SUNDAY SERVICES – IMBOLC AND BEYOND
In a few short weeks, Sunday February 3rd to be exact, the collective will be doing the Sunday service for the entire congregation. Our theme will be about creativity in spiritual practice, specifically tied to Brigid as Goddess of Poets and her day, Imbolc.
The service will be a fusion of a pagan ritual and as standard UU service. We will call quarters and raise a circle, Otter will be giving the talk portion of the service, and we will culminate with energy raising to bless seeds for the coming Spring. This will be the first service we present to the congregation and I think it’s fitting we do it for Imbolc, a time about beginnings and new possibilities.
This Imbolc service will not be a one time thing. As part of the greater UUCT congregation, we hope to host regular services, at least twice a year. So, some time later in 2019, we will do it again either for a sabbat or for some other special occasion. I look forward to us deciding together.
The Covenant of Unitarian Universalist Pagans (CUUPS) is a national organization dedicated to networking Pagan-identified Unitarian Universalists (UUs), educating people about Paganism, promoting interfaith dialogue, developing Pagan liturgies and theologies, and supporting Pagan-identified UU religious professionals. As a local Pagan group housed in a UU church, we will be becoming an official CUUPS chapter.
The process of doing so means creating a statement of purpose, creating a covenant of right relations with the UUCT congregation, and choosing officers. Thinking about the process of becoming a chapter has lead me to consider how we could be structured. As a collective, all decision making should be done through consensus.
Officers should be purely administrative roles with no inherent power above that of a general member. Roles would be defined by responsibilities to the collective instead of power over the collective. The Chair would be responsible for running meetings and would be the contact person for both CUUPS Continental – the national level organization, and the UUCT Board of Directors and Minister. The Secretary would be responsible for recordkeeping and communication to members. The Treasurer would be responsible for tracking the collective’s resources, both financial and anything else we own, such as ritual tools and supplies.
Day to day considerations, like meeting topics and ritual planning, are left to be decided collectively. This structure would, I hope, preserve the groups as a consensus based organization, where all of us have input into decisions.
HOSTING TALLAHASSEE PAGAN PRIDE DAY
Up until now, Tallahassee’s Pagan Pride Day has been a small event hosted at Athena’s Garden. For 2019, Dandelion Pagan Collective will be hosting Pagan Pride Day. I hope we can lift this event up and make it something special. Part of Dandelion Pagan Collective’s purpose is to build a local pagan community that is stronger and more inclusive than it is now. A strong Pagan Pride Day is a real step towards that goal.
We’ve reserved the church grounds for the entire day on September 28th. By hosting it at the church, we have the opportunity to make the event more engaging and larger in scale. We have four rooms for classes and workshops and the sanctuary for ritual space or vendor booths, all indoors away from the brutal September heat. I would love to see a public ritual, art, entertainment and more all be part of the event.
We’ll be planning from scratch for this event, which is really exciting and loaded with possibilities but also means we have a lot of work to do. That’s why we will be starting to plan in February. I’ll be announcing the first planning meeting near the beginning of the month. If you’re interested in being involved, please let me know.
This is only some of the possibilities for Dandelion Pagan Collective during the next year. I would love to hear from you all what you would like to do and see. We have our regular meeting twice a month and are always open to new people sharing their knowledge and skill. We also can hold events outside our regular meetings, like we did when Mama Gina visited in November. Other artists, musicians, teachers, thinkers and the like are all real possibilities. We would love to welcome them to visit and share their gifts.
Together we can build an amazing inclusive community of shared pagan faith. This year is just the beginning.