Amber and I made the drive out to Trout Lake Abbey tonight for our first ADF-style ritual as ADF members and we agreed that it was impressive. Reverend Kirk Thomas is a talented ritual leader; we’re lucky to have a location like Trout Lake Abbey relatively locally.
The ritual was Welsh-flavored, honoring the horse and sovereignty goddess Rhiannon and her husband, the human hero Pwyll. Pwyll’s friend and god of the underworld Arawn was the gatekeeper and, as best I can recall, the Earth Mother was simply called that. The omens pulled were Horse, Ram and Stag, which Rev. Thomas interpreted to mean that while we may face challenges, we can force and battle our way through them, leading to an outcome where we stand triumphant and independent. He laughed when he pulled Horse for the first omen. The ritual also included a spiral dance and the dressing of the maypole.
Overall I was very impressed by the grounds at Trout Lake Abbey, the ritual space that Rev. Thomas has built, and the beauty of Mt. Rainier (I think) and the Columbia River herself on the drive up. Every time I thought the view couldn’t get any more gorgeous, it did, including at one point a rainbow that seemed to start on the Oregon side, arch over the river, and land on the Washington side.