Imbolg ritual

This is the Imbolg ritual we are using this Sunday. Thought I would share it a couple days ahead of time. I haven’t attributed the source of most of it but it’s kind of a conglomeration of different prayers and rituals.

Menu

Bread, honey, butter

Bailey’s Irish Cream

Colcannon

Dessert

Imbolg 2010

Supplies: Chalice and cream, small cauldron and candle for inside, three 7-day candles, Brighid’s bed (acorns with wand and corn dolly, 19 candles for lighting, red candle, white candle, cakes, Brighid altar.

Begin with one white candle lit on the altar.

Circle is Cast
P1: Tonight we celebrate and honor Brighid, triple Goddess of fire and the hearth, Goddess of healers, childbirth and fertility, Goddess of poetic inspiration and divination, metal working and crafts.

We invite you Brighid into our home to bring us tidings for the rest of this year.

Lights white candle candle

P2: Angus, God of youth, love, and beauty. We invite you here upon this night.

Lights the red candle

P2: Story

P3: Behold the God and Goddess,
Once again the Earth is blessed
With life anew inside.
Seeds shall soon begin to sprout
And creatures shall young bear
For this is the Promise, the Cycle of Life
That is born of the love they share.

P4 takes an acorn or hazelnut from in front of the God candle and places it in the Brighid’s Bed.

P3: Bride, the young Maiden of Spring is fragile, yet growing stronger each day as the sun rekindles its fire, turning scarcity into abundance.

Lights candle in cauldron.

P1: Blessing for Hearth-Keepers
by Caitlin Matthews

Brighid of the Mantle, encompass us,
Lady of the Lambs, protect us,
Keeper of the Hearth, kindle us.
Beneath your mantle, gather us,
And restore us to memory.

Mother of our mothers,
Foremothers strong,
Guide our hands in yours,
Remind us how
To kindle the hearth,
To keep it bright,
To preserve the flame.
Your hands upon ours,
Our hands within yours,
To kindle the light,
Both day and night.

The Mantle of Brighid about us,
The Memory of Brighid within us,
The Protection of Brighid keeping us
From harm, from ignorance,
from heartlessness,
This day and night,
From dawn till dark,
From dark till dawn

Burning of the Callieach

P2: For more than 900 years the flame of Brigit burned in her shrine at Kildare, tended first by the priestesses of the goddess, and then by the Catholic sisters of the saint.  In the year 1220 the bishop ordered it extinguished.

White candle is blown out.

P3: Soon it was relit.

Candle is relit.

P1: It burned until the reformation, during the reign of King Henry the Eighth, and was extinguished again, and the abbey destroyed.

Candle is blown out.

P4: In 1996 the flame was lit again in Kildare.

Candle is relit.

P2: The darkness of ignorance and fear may well put it out again one day.

Candle is blown out.

P3: But the true flame was not Ireland, the true flame is the Goddess.

Lights the 3 seven-day candles

All: As I kindle the flame upon the hearth, I pray that the flame of Brighid may burn in my soul, and the souls of all I meet. May the spark of Brighid light the love in my soul that it may burn brightly through the day. And may I warm those that are lonely, whose hearts are cold and lifeless, so that all may know the comfort of Brighid’s love.

Nineteen candles are lit for Brigid (everyone takes turns lighting and saying a line)
-I light the first candle to honor Brighid as “Mary of the Gael”
-I light the second candle to honor her as Brigantia, guardian of the Land
-I light the third candle to honor Brighid, daughter of the Morrigan and the Dagda, of the Tuatha de Danaan
-I light the fourth candle to honor her as Mother of the Three Gods of Danu – Ruadan, Iuchar and Uar, who wed the Three Goddesses of Eire :Eire, Fodhla and Banbha
-I light the fifth candle to honor her human birth, daughter of Dubthach & Broicsech
-I light the sixth candle to honor her foster father, the Druid, who foresaw her eminance and was her teacher
-I light the seventh candle to honor Bishop Mél, who was inspired to ordain her as a bishop in the Christian church
-I light the eighth candle to honor her as Sun Goddess, and Maiden of the Hearth
-I light the ninth candle to honor her as Guardian of the Holy Well which heals
-I light the tenth candle in honor of her as the inspiration of Poets and Bards
-I light the eleventh candle to honor her as midwife and healer, protector of children
-I light the twelfth candle to honor her patron of the Blacksmiths, and all other crafts.
-I light the thirteenth candle to honor her as prophetess and Seer, as taught by the Druids
-I light the fourteenth candle to honor her as mistress of domestic arts & crafts
-I light the fifteenth candle to honor her as the celestial dairymaid patron of agriculture and fertility and protector of animals, both wild and domestic
-I light the sixteenth candle to honor her as a Lady of Charity, who gave away all she had to those in need
-I light the seventeenth candle to honor her as Brigit of the Mantle, who spread her healing cloak
-I light the eighteenth candle to honor the Druid’s Oak, under which she built her abbey at Kildare
-I light the nineteenth candle as a clarsach which spells – hours, days and signs, all in a silver bough
Your last is your first, the beginning of the turning sea, the ending of the three. The dancing sun in the hears of all! The candle that never dies!

Cakes and Cream

P2: Holds the chalice aloft.
May this cup be filled with the brightest blessings of Brighid. May all our hopes come to fruition.  May our lives be filled with love. May we be reborn into the Spring.

P1: (Offering)
Brighid you are welcome here to inspire us, to heal us, to prosper us and to bless us with good luck.

(Pours some cream into the offering bowl)

Chalice is passed

P4: (Holds plate of cakes up to the sky) These cakes are symbolic of abundance. Without the love of the God and Goddess and the nurturing elements we would be unable to experience their essence.

(Offering)

Cakes are passed saying, “May you never hunger.”

All: Hold hands.

All: May the holy maiden Brighid, radiant flame of gold,
protect you from all dangers.
No fire, no sun, no moon will burn you,
No lake, no water, no sea shall drown you,
No arrow of fairy nor dart of the Fay shall wound you.
May Brighid’s waters heal you.
May Brighid’s winds inspire you.
May Brighid’s fire warm you.
May Brighid make you strong throughout the year to come.
Under her protection, go in peace.

P3: We honor you, the Maiden, most blessed Brighid. As your candles burn through this night we thank you for the renewed life you offer us all as you emerge from the dark to the light.

P4: We honor you, Angus, great God of Dagda and thank you for your presence in our circle. We send you our blessings as you spread love and light throughout the land.

Extinguish red candle

Circle is Closed

P2: Brighid, we leave you this cream and oats as you bestow blessings on our households.

Place the oats, and leftover cream drink outside the front door. The three candles remain lit through the night.

Closing Song
May the circle be open
But unbroken
May the love (peace, joy) of the Goddess be ever
In your heart
Merry Meet and Merry Part
And Merry Meet again

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One thought on “Imbolg ritual

  1. Very lovely! I especially like the 17 candles and words of blessing/honoring asthey are lit in a full-participation manner. 🙂

    Now I’m hungry for good artisan bread too! Off to the store after work for fancy flour so me and the kid can make bread knots.

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