Wiccans Feel Image is Unfair

October 30, 2008

Author: Frank Juliano

Source: The Connecticut Post


No, this is not a joke. Wiccan Priestess Alicia Folberth wants to clear up what she says are confusion, misinformation and downright lies that years of cheesy horror flicks and people of other faiths have spread about witchcraft and neo-pagan practices.

"Halloween in the Wiccan religion is known as Samhain [pronounced Sow-en], which is Gaelic and means 'summer's end' and heralds the old Celtic New Year," she said. It is one of eight Sabbats, or holy days, modern versions of the pre-Christian faith observe, said Folberth, head of a coven that meets in various area towns. Those feast days are tied to the solar and lunar calendar and include both solstices and both equinoxes.

Kim, a practicing Wiccan who asked not to have her last name published, said she will observe the feast tonight by cooking an elaborate meal and setting a place for her dead father at the head of the table. "We believe that at Samhain the veil between the physical and mystical worlds is the thinnest and that our loved ones who have passed on come back to visit. I welcome my father into my home."

Kim was raised a Catholic growing up in Milford and attended St. Mary's School here. But she feels certain that her father approves of her new faith, which she has practiced for seven years.

"My father often comes to me in dreams, and he knew that I was always curious, stubborn but open-minded. He said to me once in a dream 'I always knew that you'd be the one.' It's the same as when a Christian brings flowers to the cemetery or a Jewish person puts stones on a loved one's grave." After the meal, she will put leftovers outside for animals to enjoy, celebrating the circle of life, Kim said. "And then I'll take my daughter trick-or-treating.''

Folberth said Wicca is not the same as Druidism, and actually has more in common with Christianity than one might think. "We don't worship Satan; the devil is actually a figure in Christianity. We worship a goddess, a deity, but some of us are duotheists, honoring both a god and a goddess, or polytheists, honoring an ancient pantheon of ancient gods and goddesses."

The Panthean Temple that Folberth leads has been in existence for 13 years, making it the oldest Wiccan and Pagan temple in the state, the priestess said. Services have been held in Oxford and East Haven, where until recently Folberth operated a Wiccan store, as well as Milford and other towns.

See also: Paganism, Civic