Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Regarding Standing Rock...

Today, many Heathens are posting this video to express our solidarity with the Standing Rock protesters, and I would like to share my personal sentiments as well.

The opening of the video makes a reference to the forces of nature, personified in the giant troll women, turning against King Frothi for his unjust leadership, thereby bringing down his kingdom.

We Urglaawer just completed the observance of Allelieweziel. Part of our observance is the recognition that the settlers of Allemaengel had violated a social contract that exists among all living things, thereby causing the plants and animals to abandon them. Had the settlers not recognized their error and been instructed by Hexes and Brauchers to make amends, the colony would have perished.

Standing Rock presents the potential for the same circumstance. I recognize that the matter has some complicating angles. For example, I drive vehicles for my private use as well as for part of my paid job. I recognize that fuel is necessary for our society to continue. However, does the pipeline need to be built through the sacred lands of the Dakota and Lakota? Does their water supply really need to be put in jeopardy?

The history of the relationship between the tribes and the US government is well known: Broken promises, broken treaties, broken arrows, and wounded knees. The Standing Rock Indian Reservation is itself the result of a broken treaty that unilaterally altered the Great Sioux Reservation. A feature of this action was to break up the tribal culture and relationship that existed among the tribes and bands in the region. Something about that undermining of a folk culture sounds familiar to this Deitsch man.

The broken promises and broken treaties are of critical importance to me as a Heathen. The keeping of oaths is central to our religion and our social integrity. The US breaking treaties affects our Wurt as a nation, and our government's actions toward the tribes diminish our honor and imperil our future.

Additionally, the pipeline construction endangers burial grounds of the tribes' ancestors. As a Heathen who owns a cemetery, I recognize the importance to my own soul of honoring my ancestors.

To allow for the disruption or destruction of the tribes' sacred graveyards is beyond reprehensible and places a stain on us that will last from generation to generation. How would the average American feel if his or her ancestors graveyards were overturned for someone else's profit? It is appalling that we are even having to talk about this in the current era. Have we learned nothing since the 19th Century?

Apparently we have not. We are seeing the violation of Standing Rock sovereignty and Dakota/Lakota dignity in order to feed the corporate machine. We are seeing a disrespect for the land, for the land spirits, and for those who have gone before. We are witnessing the violation of promises and treaties. This is unacceptable.

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Delaware Valley Pagan Clergy Submission Form

Let's build a list of Clergy folk in the Delaware Valley Pagan Network. 

Please note that the information submitted will be made public, so please do not share anything that you do not wish to have available publicly.

Yuletide Sock Drive

Socks are one of the most requested items at homeless shelters, but they are also one of the least-donated items.

From December 17, 2016 (Krampuslauf Philadelphia: Parade of Spirits) through January 1, 2016, Distelfink Sippschaft will be collecting new, unworn socks for folks in need. We need all sizes, from baby to adult male. Practical socks, fun socks, fuzzy socks, holiday socks, argyle socks are all needed!

Stock up stacks of socks and stockings and help to bring warmth to the feet of those in need this Yuletide!

Contact Robert L. Schreiwer (schreiwer@urglaawe.org) for collection sites. The first location will be at Parade of Spirits/Krampuslauf in Liberty Lands Park.

Donations will be directed to homeless shelters in the Delaware Valley.

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Krampuslauf Philadelphia: Parade of Spirits Photos

Most of our photos came from the preparation period because it was difficult to take photos while marching, but there were other people taking photographs of the parade along the marching route. Hopefully we will be able to share more in the future. Featured in our photos are Mike Hicks in his debut in the role of Belsnickel. Robert L. Schreiwer reprised his 2013 role as Gedreier Eckhart, the leader of the Wild Hunt from Deitsch lore. Andria Carpentier marched as a spirit in the Hunt and assisted others with makeup. Corrine Johnson delighted the crowd with her stunning handmade Yule Cat (from Icelandic lore) costume. Joe Barrett and other folks formed a group of Yule Lads.

Kindred of Mann added their logo to the Heathen Traditions banner. :)


Channel 17 has some great pics posted, particularly from the fire performers!


Once again, Krampuslauf Philadelphia: Parade of Spirits has exceeded our expectations. This wondrous, grassroots, community- and participant-driven event continues to grow and to flourish in the City of Brotherly Love.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Yuletide Sock Drive

YULETIDE SOCK DRIVE

Socks are one of the most requested items at homeless shelters, but they are also one of the least-donated items.

We will be collecting new, unworn socks for folks in need. We need all sizes, from baby to adult male. Practical socks, fun socks, fuzzy socks, holiday socks, argyle socks are all needed!

Stock up stacks of socks and stockings and help to bring warmth to the feet of those in need this Yuletide!

PHILADELPHIA METRO

Contact Robert L. Schreiwer for collection sites. The first location will be at Krampuslauf in Liberty Lands Park on December 12, 2015.

PITTSBURGH METRO

Contact Jo Spinks for collection sites. Drive runs through January 2, 2016.

Donations will be directed to shelters and community organizations in the local areas.

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Krampuslauf Philadelphia: Parade of Spirits

KRAMPUSLAUF PHILADELPHIA: PARADE OF SPIRITS

Philadelphia, PA: The fifth annual Krampuslauf Philadelphia: Parade of Spirits is set to take place on Saturday, December 12, 2015, at Liberty Lands Park in Philadelphia. Gathering time begins at 3:00 with the parade setting off just before sunset. 

Krampuslauf Philadelphia began as a grassroots event in 2011. Founder Amber Dorko-Stopper states, “My original purpose in creating Krampuslauf Philadelphia was to experiment with grassroots folkloric festivals within the community. I started out without a community to do it in, and so everything I hoped Krampuslauf would be -- having never been to a "real" one in Austria or Germany -- was based around what I would want to see and participate in with my then three year-old children.” 

As such, Krampuslauf Philadelphia is a very family-friendly event. The rhythm of the event is echoes numerous cultures. Says Dorko-Stopper, “Also, because my children are both children of color -- my son was born in South Korea, my daughter is African-American -- I gave a lot of thought to ancestral heritages and what I could do to evoke "monsters" of all cultures in one event, as it became clearer to me that anywhere that winter was cold, there was, in almost every nation, a "monster" of winter, who often had horns, and often had bells. The undercurrent of universal language was there and I appreciated being able to tap into it without guilt or fear. It was amazing to suddenly be getting letters from Austrians, telling me how our Krampuslauf looked more like Austria's had in years past -- less like the Krampus events held there today, and how our homemade ethic and spirit of working together without boundaries was appreciated.”

Dorko-Stopper has also welcomed the presence of the Pagan community. The Heathen Contingent for Krampuslauf Philadelphia every year presents themes or characters that align with the multicultural presentation of the event. German, Austrian, Pennsylvania German, Manx, Scottish, and Irish characters have a regular presence at the event. 

Tucker Collins, an organizer and leader of the event, says, ”My favorite part of the event is being able to observe the way people come together, and what they bring of themselves to that event. Getting to see how people choose to express themselves through their costuming. Some people attend wholly in character, some come with serious demeanors and others with jest. I love seeing the broadening of cultures represented there, and the increasing personalization of the event for its participants. You don't have to know where you are going or what you want to do when you choose to start, and creativity can flow from there.  It probably is interesting to people that see us passing, but the procession is something we do for ourselves as a community.

In order to help to increase the participation and this expression of self in the event, Dorko-Stopper and Collins arrange for periodic opportunities throughout the year for the community to learn to make their own masks or decorations for the event.

From the Heathen perspective, the Parade of Spirits is a depiction of the Wild Hunt. Dorks-Stopper is widely known by the moniker of Frau Perchta, a most appropriate title given her role in the organization of the event. This year, the parade will again be led by Gedreier Eckhart (Loyal Eckhart), the man of Pennsylvania German and German lore who was sent ahead to alert humanity of the Wild Hunt’s impending arrival. 

The community is encouraged to don shadow side costumes and to join the Parade of Spirits! Oh, and bring a noisemaker!

ROBERT L. SCHREIWER
DELAWARE VALLEY PAGAN NETWORK

-------------

Krampuslauf Philadelphia 2015: Parade of Spirits begins and ends in Liberty Lands Park in Philly. Gathering time can start as early as 3:00, but most folks come closer to 4:00. The parade begins at just about sundown (4:35 PM). Folks are encouraged to be in costumes that reflect the time of the year and to bring noisemakers. We still need volunteers to help with traffic. :)


Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Allelieweziel Article in the "Wild Hunt"

The Urglaawe observance of Allelieweziel got a write-up on the Wild Hunt, which is a major Pagan news source. 


It is a good article by Heather Greene with some good photos by Jennifer Milby of Distelfink's ceremony from Sunday, October 25, 2015