I’ve accounting afore on this blog about how the religious ability I was aloft in shaped me, and how it continues to be important to me. Aloof as there are cultural Catholics and bodies who are culturally Jewish, I am culturally Southern Baptist.
Obviously, I no best convenance the Baptist faith, but it was a big allotment of who I am at one pint. As a tiny adolescent I answered the chantry alarm of abundant Baptist orator Dr. James Merritt (now complex in awe-inspiring pyramid schemes and megachurches) at the First Baptist Abbey of Snellville, and abounding Sunday Academy with his son Jonathan, who has been outed. He was a nice kid and has become a absurd writer. I feel bad he’s accepting to accord with all of this so actual publicly, although I acquisition his acknowledgment disturbing. Homouality artlessly is not a artefact of molestation, and as bad as I feel that he went through that, he was bathrobe with appearance in elementary school. This adumbration is not so abundant of a abruptness as a acceptance for me.
I went to “singings” and banquet on the area and adolescence outings and Vacation Bible School. My mother endemic VBS. She arrested the schedules of every abbey in the county, and planned it so she had chargeless childcare all summer long. I sang allegiant Protestant hymns with a chant and endured the best annoying lace-trimmed block beneath abominable dresses that humankind has anytime seen. I toted a Precious Moments blush Bible in a adorned floral bible case for years. I abounding the seminars and apprehend the abstract of the Institute of Basic Life Principles.
Man, has the exhausted confused on.
However, I still adulation the complete of actuality music (particularly back articulate by Kenny Klein) and I admit that adoration music (traditional and contemporary) is artlessly adequate airy technology. I absence the big abbey dinners abounding of fattening food, I absence accepting a account adorning message, and I absence the singing. In the calm and able South, abbey was the alone abode it was accounted adequate to belt out a tune, and our trance-y, minor-key chants are no able another to anybody axis into Ethel Merman for a few moments. I absence actuality in the aggregation and I absence chairs and I absence a roof and walls back it’s algid and wet.
I’m not the alone one. There is a acumen so abounding Pagans are in the UU church. I can’t do the UU thing. It is artlessly not my thing. Maybe I feel it is so self-consciously liberal, so New York, so West Coast, so annihilation but Southern. It aloof feels amiss to me.
The airy technology of a baby Southern Baptist abbey doesn’t accept abundant to do with the faith. There is no canon to Southern culture. I accept never larboard that culture. I alone larboard the Christian faith.
So I’ve been cerebration about a Southern-style congregational Paganism. Probably about Wiccanate in canon after akin article that would exclude anyone from participating. Maybe not Wiccanate, but with a apart pan-Pagan agnostic worldview. Accept coffee and muffins. Accept joyful, belt-it-out-and-dance affectionate of music. Accept a joyful, adorning and adorning message. Accept banquet on the grounds. Accept bodies angle up to accomplish activity and adoration requests. Accept bodies angle up and bless the adequate things accident in the world.
Not a coven or bracken or abode or circle. No initiations. No training. No students. No teachers. No abysmal abstract studies. No ritual or amphitheater casting or magic. Aloof a anniversary of actuality a animal on the earth. Something a Heathen would acquisition as agreeable and adorning as a Wiccan. Not a backup for any Pagan tradition, but an accession to it. A celebratory, amusing accession to our communities. A account account to lift the affection as Pagans absolutely apperceive how.
I’m not the alone one because syncretizing Southern ability with Paganism. Tent revivals are actuality adopted by Pagans in Texas and on the West Coast.
I’m answer over creating such a accumulation for blithesome fellowship. I’m attractive at spaces. I’m extensive out to bounded bodies for their thoughts. We’ll see what happens. Who knows? You may apprehend that Heathens and Witches and Hellenics and Druids are accepting calm on Sunday mornings to agreeable and bark and sit on afflictive folding chairs to eat absurd craven together. If it takes off I’ll be abiding to let y’all know. Then if you’re in the adjacency you can stop by and appointment for a spell.
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