The women gathered … Maidens, Mothers, Crones, and Crones-About-to-Be. One-by-one, in pairs, and in small groups, we arrived and were warmly welcomed by our host, Michelle Pettigrew, at her sanctuary and home in Moss Beach. Our breath was taken as we entered venue for our annual Crone Ceremony. We were instantly transported into a magical, peaceful, and spiritual space that made our regular lunar cycle reunion even sweeter than usual.
I was honored to stand with our other crones as we cast our circle, reminding myself that I am still a “baby crone” – just one year old. Crowns on heads, we stood as wise women, proud of our current place in our life’s journeys. As I looked at each of our crones, I couldn’t help but notice how beautiful each is and feel how much wisdom there is among us.
North, East, South, West, Sky, Earth, and Ourselves … we invoked the sources of our strength. Annette Ward read and Amy Sullivan blew the conch.
We called in our ancestors, special ones blessedly still with us, and Moon Mother Sisters who were not able to attend. As we moved around the circle, Lisa Forward, called our attention to a whale swimming just off shore … a record keeper for all time, nurturer, and go-getters who understand there is more to this life than meets the eye. Whales are associated with emotion, inner truth, and creativity. How perfect for this wondrous evening. Thank you for being with us, our living embodiment of our special mother whale spirit.
Pele, goddess of fire, lightning, dance, volcanoes, and transformation was also with us. As ever, we were enchanted by our introduction to Ka wahine ‘ai honua, the woman who devours the land as both creator and destroyer. Tammy Trejo told us the legend of Pele the powerful shape shifting Goddess of transformation and creation.
And then the main event. The croning ceremony started, as always, with the crone walk. Maidens walked the path once; mothers twice; crones and crones about to be “born” three times. As we approached the end of this meaningful journey, we formed an archway for our three new crones, Lucinda Browning, Kristen Hewett and Barbara Lewicki, to make their passageway. We bathed them with our breath as they proceeded through our loving pathway.
Tammy introduced us to Kristen, Barbara and Lucinda and then presented their new crone names Mystic Dragonfly, Phoenix and Lucinda Sue Cinda. Tammy told us a few wonderful things about each as three of our maidens presented crowns. One by one, each received her lovingly hand made crown – each one absolutely perfect for the honorees. Particularly moving was the message from one of our maidens who expressed how precious it was for her to be in the presence of women who serve as models representing her future.
Each Moon Mother approached the thrones, honoring the crones and bestowing gifts found in nature. Some recited poems or sang.
We released the circle and walked toward the ocean looking for our mother moon, hidden by a recently rare fog. We knew she was there and we saluted her with our beautiful ululations.
And then the feast and merry making! What could be better on this cool evening but clam chowder? Our buffet created by our sisters was magnificent as usual. This time of “sisterhood” is a truly savory ending of a delicious evening.
Welcome, Mystic Dragonfly, Phoenix and Lucinda Sue Cinda. Thank you Tammy and Leah. Abundant thanks to Michelle Pettigrew for welcoming us to your singularly unique space.
Many blessings, Chris Garrett