Announcements

The Temple is pleased to announce open registration for Encountering the Witch Soul Through the Witches’ Pyramid. This five-part series offered through the Sagittarius Ministry over Zoom will involve exploring the Witches’ Pyramid and how it relates to accessing the Witch Soul. Each class will include a ritual lead by Debbie Stellhorn, a meditation lead by Dawn Costorf, and healing/energy work guidance by Oceana LeBlanc, all High Priestesses in the Temple of Witchcraft.

See the class page for details and links to registration.

Welcome Deborah Stellhorn as Libra Lead Minister

The Temple of Witchcraft board of directors is pleased to announce it has appointed High Priestess Deborah Stellhorn as lead minister of the Libra Ministry. Debbie is also Temple Fundraising Coordinator and a board member, teaching classes within the Temple’s Sagittarius Ministry. With her qualifications in higher education and psychology, we look forward to having Debbie’s expertise guiding the Libra Ministry.

The Libra Ministry is responsible for conflict mediation and arbitration between individual members, or between ministries within the Temple. The ministry will be posting an application for new mediators soon. In the meantime, if you would like more information about becoming a mediator, please contact libra@templeofwitchcraft.org.

Queer Spirit Working Group – Apply Now!

Applications are open for a new Queer Spirit working group, which will be creating online rituals together for the Sabbats from Yule 2022 through Samhain 2023. We will be using Steve Kenson’s work on the Queer Mysteries through the Wheel of the Year as our jumping off point. Each member of the group will be responsible for leading one of the rituals, recruiting other members to take various roles as needed. We will gather on Zoom for each ritual, followed by some time for checking-in, sharing experiences, etc.

All the meetings will be on Sundays from 7:00 – 8:30 pm Eastern. The dates are:

  • December 4, 2022 – Meeting and getting organized
  • December 18, 2022 – Yule
  • January 29, 2023 – Imbolc
  • March 19, 2023 – Ostara
  • April 30, 2023 – Beltane
  • June 18, 2023 – Midsummer
  • July 30, 2023 – Lammas
  • September 17, 2023 – Mabon
  • October 29, 2023 – Samhain

We are asking participants to commit to attend all of the working group meetings (barring serious illness or emergency or the like). This group is for people who identify as Queer using an expansive definition: gay, lesbian, bisexual, pansexual, transgender, non-binary, intersex, asexual/aromantic, polyamorous, and potentially other queer identities we haven’t listed here.

Apply to be part of this program by filling out this online application form no later than November 30, 2022. If you have questions about the Queer Spirit group, please email queerspirit@templeofwitchcraft.org.

 

 

COVID-19 Safety Guidelines

In the interest of keeping our community as safe as possible during the COVID-19 pandemic, the Temple of Witchcraft board of directors has instituted the following guidelines for in-person Temple events:

Vaccination

The Temple expects attendees at in-person events to be up-to-date on their COVID vaccinations, and to be fully vaccinated, as much as medically possible, before attending an event (meaning at least two weeks after a complete vaccination series). Attendees are expected to be prepared to show proof of vaccination, if it is asked of them. Exceptions will be made for those with medical conditions precluding vaccination. Available boosters, including the most recent bivalent booster, are considered a part of this up-to-date status.

Masking

Masking, ideally using a high-quality N95 or NK95 mask, is required at all indoor events and may be required at outdoor events at the Temple’s discretion, based on the venue and attendance. Masks must be worn at all times, so facilitators are encouraged to modify events as-needed to ensure compliance. One example is the elimination of after-sabbat potlucks to avoid removal of masks to eat and drink indoors.

Attendance Limits

To facilitate distancing, the Temple currently requires in-person venues to be limited to 70-75% of their normal capacity. For the Upper Village Hall in Derry, this is currently 70. For the Temple teaching space at Grandview, this is 15. These numbers include any staff, facilitators, or the like—the total number of people in the space. Please account for this in event registration.

Distance Events

The above guidelines apply to all Temple of Witchcraft events held in New Hampshire, either at the Temple’s Grandview property or at rental properties such as the Upper Village Hall.

The Temple Board recognizes that conditions and needs may vary locally, and so encourages facilitators of Temple events outside of the greater New Hampshire area to follow these guidelines, but facilitators may use their own discretion and best judgment when it comes to modifying them to best suit the needs of their community.

Witchcraft I: The Inner Temple with High Priestess and Temple teacher Matooka Moonbear will be starting on November 4, 2022, in Alfred, Maine, near Kennebunk. This is presently the only in-person Witchcraft I class in the greater New England area with open registration, so don’t miss out if you are looking for in-person instruction and to get started with the Temple Mystery School. Follow the link above to the Witchcraft I class page for more information, or you can go directly to the online application for the class, or email matooka@templeofwitchcraft.org with questions about the class or the application process.

Temple Announces New Incoming Board Members

The Temple of Witchcraft is excited to announce our newest board members. Deborah Stellhorn and Dan Lupacchino will join the Board  of Directors for the 2022-2024 session as two of the three voting advisors to the board, serving alongside current board members Elsa Elliott (Voting Advisor), Steve Kenson (Secretary), Jocelyn Van Bokkelen (Treasurer), Christopher Penczak (Vice-President), and Adam Sartwell (President).

Debbie is an ordained high priestess in the Temple, fundraising coordinator, former Templefest housing coordinator, deputy in the Sagittarius Ministry of education, and an active teacher in the community, co-teaching The Work of the Mighty Dead and Psychology & Magick extended courses. Debbie brings twenty-three years of professional experience in working full time in the religious non-profit world, from fundraising to direct services. Her perspective is a valuable contribution to our next phase of growth as an organization.

Daniel LupacchinoDan is an ordained high priest and official teacher in the Mystery School of the Temple, senior Teaching Assistant in the online school, sabbat ritual celebrant in our Connecticut community, and instrumental in our 2022 scholarship fundraising, as well as being a full time healing professional. Dan’s calm, kind energy as part of the next generation of leaders is deeply welcomed to the board.

The board would like to deeply thank departing board member Michael Cantone for his tremendous service over the last four years as a Voting Advisor on the Board of Directors. Michael has been with the Temple since its founding, and will continue as a beloved member of the community and leader in our tradition.

We look forward to what this new incarnation of the board will be doing in the next phase and development of the Temple of Witchcraft.

Registration for the 2022-2023 Temple Mystery School Courses is now open!

The Temple offers four years of guided personal study in the Temple Tradition of Witchcraft, available through online year-long courses through our school. We are now taking applications for levels one through four online, and offer one year four in-person (COVID health conditions permitting) in Salem, NH taught by Temple co-founder Christopher Penczak. This year, our online level one class will have an optional live Zoom component for the first time ever. Classes run from September 2022 to August 2023, with an audio lecture, supplemental material and monthly assignments.

For those who prefer to learn at their own pace, we have a brand new class, The Pillars of the Witches’ Temple, a 20-lesson self-paced online course with no monthly homework required.

For more information, visit the Online Mystery School page and the Pillars of the Witches Temple page.

New Lead Ministers Announcement

The Temple of Witchcraft board of directors is pleased to announce that High Priestess Matooka Moonbear has been confirmed as the new lead minister of the Temple’s Pisces Ministry and High Priest Jason Gamache has been confirmed as the new lead minister of the Temple’s Taurus Ministry.

Matooka Moonbear has over thirty years experience as a priestess, diviner, and healer. A graduate of the Temple’s seminary program, she previously served as lead minister of the Temple’s Cancer Ministry. Matooka served as a deputy minister for Pisces for several years prior to taking on this new role.

Jason Gamache is a graduate of the Temple’s seminary program and a former Pilgrim of the Sun and Stars. Prior to accepting the lead minister role, Jason worked as a volunteer in Taurus Ministry, particularly on the Green Man Grotto sacred space on the Temple’s land in Salem, New Hampshire.

Both new lead ministers will be installed in their roles at the Temple’s public Beltane ritual on April 30th, 2022.

Witchcraft I–III classes in Los Angeles

The Temple’s Sagittarius Ministry is pleased to announce registration is open for level I through III Mystery School classes in-person in Northest Los Angeles, California, with High Priest Scott K. Smith. Interested students should visit the Witchcraft I, Witchcraft II, or Witchcraft III pages for class details and links to online applications.

2022 New Year Message

While the Witches’ new year is Samhain, I’ve always felt the time between Samhain and Yule is a time between, a time before the new solar year for resting, reflecting, dreaming, and planning before the solar and secular New Year.

Now we enter into the new and we want to share with you some plans for the year. Our plans to celebrate Yule in-person here in New Hampshire were cancelled by bad weather and looming concerns about the omicron variant. Temple leadership continues to keep a close eye on recommendations and best-practices to keep everyone in our community safe. We have continued our online Sabbats for those not near any local Temple of Witchcraft community and plan to move forward offering sabbat rituals both online and (eventually) in-person. You can find more about our sabbats and other events here.

We are nearing the time of our second annual online gathering of TempleHearth, with an online Imbolc ritual included. Registration is still open to enjoy our many presenters, specifically from our community. Our hope is TempleFest will be in-person again this coming August.

We obtained bids for the approved plans to build our Community Center and will be unrolling our ambitious multi-year fundraising efforts for it, as the price of modern town-approved structures is estimated as 1.7 million dollars, but this fulfills our mandate to create accessible community resources that will last for generations of Witches and Pagans. Those who want to make a direct donation here can do so and mark the donation “community center” in the note. A video presentation at TempleHearth will unveil some of the designs for the Community Center.

Plans continue with our development of the land, trails, and future ritual and healing sites on the property and we have Dominique Susani and Karen Crowley-Susani coming out to New Hampshire in April to educate us more on the sacred geometry and energetic forces of the land. Workshop is open to the public and can be found here.

And for those interested in starting or continuing their education in the Temple online, we continue to offer courses and classes, such as the upcoming Path of the Moon year-long course. The current session of the Temple Mystery School ends in March, with registration opening for the September 2022 session soon thereafter, in the Spring of this year. The Temple of Witchcraft series of books continues to be updated with 20th Anniversary Editions, including a forthcoming The Outer Temple of Witchcraft, and I know the Mystery School staff and I look forward to entering a new era of our education with you all.

Looking forward to an exciting new year with everyone as we move into 2022! 2022 is a six year (2+0+2+2=6) and in the Tree of Life six is the number of the Sun. Together let’s invoke a year of health, happiness, harmony, and prosperity for all.

Blessed be,

Christopher Penczak
Co-Founder of the Temple of Witchcraft

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