(RNS) Bonfires, drum circles, dancing, candlelit meditation and other ceremonial rituals help usher in the summer solstice at the annual Pagan Spirit Gathering, now in its 30th year in the United States.
Along with celebrating the longest day of the year on Monday (June 21), this year’s weeklong festival at a campground in Salem, Mo., will also feature prayers to help the Earth recover from the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.
“We always do planetary healing prayers, meditations, and ceremonies on Solstice day itself, and we will be continuing our prayers about the oil disaster,” said Selena Fox, a high priestess at Circle Sanctuary, a Wisconsin-based pagan resource center.

“We will explore ways that the various organizations and traditions represented at our gathering can support relief efforts.”
The most famous Solstice celebration draws tens of thousands of revelers to England’s ancient Stonehenge monument every June; the Missouri festival, which runs June 20-27, will be the largest organized event in the U.S., Fox said.
Nearly 1,000 people are expected to attend from North America, Europe and Asia, including practitioners of Wicca, contemporary pagan, Druid, Celtic, Native American, Afro-Caribbean, and Taoist faiths.
The main Solstice ritual will feature chanting from 18 Circle Sanctuary ministers, intended to “help heal the wound in the earth,” Fox added.
— Nicole Neroulias
Copyright 2010 Religion News Service. All rights reserved. No part of this transmission may be distributed or reproduced without written permission.
More from Beliefnet and our partners
previous posts

Heartbreak and questions abound as more details come to light about the time between police arriving at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde and the neutralizing of the shooter. During a Texas Senate hearing Tuesday, Col. Steven McCraw, the director of the state Department of Public Safety (DPS), revealed that an Uvalde officer, Ruben Ruiz, was […]

Actress Candace Cameron Bure was filled with emotion when she encouraged her fans to help push back against the current “state of the world.” In an Instagram video to her 5.5 million followers, Bure said, “Do you ever scroll through Instagram and just get sad at the state of the world? That’s me right now.” […]

After the mass shootings in Buffalo, New York, and Uvalde, Texas, Academy Award-winning actor Matthew McConaughey made an appearance at the White House press briefing last Tuesday after visiting Capitol Hill and meeting briefly in private with President Joe Biden. In a passionate 22-minute speech, McConaughey, a gun owner, called upon a gridlocked Congress to […]

The mother of NBA superstar Steph Curry reveals she nearly aborted her son but God intervened. Sonja Curry details in her new book how she scheduled an abortion when she was pregnant with Steph but ultimately decided to cancel the appointment. She credits God for intervening after another unplanned pregnancy. “God had a plan for […]

Close Ad