First and foremost, I apologize for the delay in posting. Existential circumstance took hold of my day and prevented me from working on this week's post. Rest assured I will make sure to get things in on time this coming Sunday!
For our new readers, these weekly Q&A discussions will be posted on Sunday evenings, and will feature questions submitted the previous week, with a submission cutoff of 11:59pm on Saturday! To submit your questions, please email us at CovenantofTheRose@gmail.com, or Wynnie@covenantoftherose.org!
Q: Do I need to be a Wiccan to join the Covenant of the Rose?
A: Nope! We are actually not a Wiccan group, but are instead an eclectic group that sometimes utilizes Wiccan/ Pagan practices. Rest assured that that we welcome persons of all walks of life!
Q: I am a pagan and am seeking religious support, does the Covenant offer that? And Do I need to be a member?
A: Yes! We offer pagan religious counsel, and no, you do not need to be a member! As religious leaders in the community, we have taken vows to empower and support those who need it.
Q: I am a minor but I really want to come to the virtual events. Since it isn't in person is that okay?
A: Yes and no, it's a little complicated. So, technically, it is still a coven event, and while it isn't necessarily illegal for minors to attend as it is virtual, it is a moral grey area. Because of this, we are willing to consider high school students of all grades, but would prefer to get parental permission.
Q: Do members of the Covenant work robed?
A: Typically no. We do have them, and if we do a public ritual we wear them, but it is more so new persons and guests can tell who is ritual staff and who is a guest. Otherwise we wear normal clothes, and if I am being frank, we shoot for comfort.
Q: What are the coven's feelings on the Black Lives Matter movement?
A: We are fully and ferociously in support of the Black Lives Matter movement! While yes, all lives are important, all lives are not targeted for their skin colour, black lives are. If you or someone you know would like more information on the movement, we are more than happy to point you in the right direction!
Q: I am asexual and have found myself in situations of discomfort when at other events due to the somewhat overly sexual nature of the rituals, and the nudity. When I mentioned to a friend later that it made me uncomfortable, I was told "If you don't like it find a new religion, because Wicca isn't for you", and I am really disheartened. I really like the sound of the Covenant of the Rose, but I want to make sure I won't run into this with you guys.
A: First and foremost I'd like to apologize on behalf of the person who told you Wicca wasn't for you; if you found your calling in Wicca, then WICCA IS FOR YOU! And anyone who says otherwise is not someone who has your best interest at heart, so I hope you distanced yourself from them.
That being said, I completely understand being uncomfortable in highly intimate situations as someone on the asexuality spectrum. Covenant of the Rose understands that for many people, nudity and sexual situations can be uncomfortable, and as a result we always work clothed to foster a safe and comfortable environment for all persons.
Occasionally we will include rituals similar to the great rite, however, we do it symbolically with the athame in the chalice; anyone who wants to use that energy for their own intimacy is free to do so with a consenting partner in the privacy of their own home. Moreover, I am a firm believer in giving people a heads up about the energy of the rituals ahead of time so they may not attend if they feel uncomfortable with the subject matter. Alternatively, I am more than willing to change my rituals to suit the coven members and guests, so if you have an aversion to subject matter or to potential inclusions (food, incense, etc) please tell me ahead of time! Especially if it is an allergy! I will never include anything if I know it will cause pain, discomfort, or anxiety for an attendee!
If you have any other questions or concerns, please feel free to contact me directly and I will make time to have a chat!
Q: When the pandemic cools down I would really like to come to an event, but I am a single mum, can I bring my son?
A: Potentially! Some of our rituals are more adult oriented as they focus on the more difficult aspects of life such as loss, hardship, and fears which would obviously not be suitable for a small child. However, many of our rituals are very kid friendly such as the Ostara egg hunt and the Lammas family feast! If you would like to come to a ritual with heavier themes and do not have childcare, we can probably work something out; as a teacher by profession, I have lots of arts supplies and educational videos! So yea! Shoot me an email for the specific event and we will talk!
Q: My Book of Shadows is currently just a notebook, I want to get a leather one but with the pandemic I haven't really been able to look. Do you have a recommendation for vendors?
A: First and foremost, anything can be a Book of Shadows, so don't feel like you need to spend money on a fancy one; but yes, I have a favourite vendor! The Astrology Store in Glendale, Arizona has a great selection of leather and metal bound journals, and they ship! And for those of you who didn't hear, one of the owners, Ray Watkins, an absolutely wonderful person and beautiful soul, was murdered earlier this year. The community is absolutely beside themselves with grief as a result of the loss, and as a long time patron, I want to do everything I can to help out; the fact that the journals are stunning is just a bonus! For more info, visit their website at http://theastrologystore.com/
Q: Traditionally the athame is black handled, but I prefer my bone handled one. Does that make it less powerful?
A: Not at all! The black handle is a traditionally Wiccan practice; most witches simply use what calls to them!
Q: I don't really believe in divinity; can I still be a witch?
A: Absolutely! Witchcraft is a practice, not a religion. There are witches in just about every country and from just about every background, but believing in (the) god(desses) is not required.
Q: Do familiars have to be cats?
A: Nope! Familiar simply means your craft inclined animal companion; mine is a dog, and our California Priestess' is an iguana, so whatever species bonds with you!
Lady Wynnie is the ArchPriestess and founder of Covenant of the Rose. She is also a talented writer who will be blogging about the coven and it's happenings!