Karl Gallagher (selenite) wrote,
Karl Gallagher

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Happy Beltaine

Our CUUPS group had its Beltaine ritual on Saturday. I'd gotten a bit too volunteering-happy and wound up with two roles--storyteller in the ritual and donation-raiser outside it. The storytelling caused me the most stress. I've done a bunch of it, but it's been years since I've done anything before a crowd, and I didn't have any guidance on what to do. I finally settled on a mini-history of Beltaine and was still editing it at the site that afternoon after the workshops. Then I had to memorize it.

Fundraising went pretty well. The usual practice was to stick the donation basket in a visible spot and hope. I took it with me and worked the crowd. "Pardon me, we're asking everyone to donate $5 for the ritual towards the upkeep of the church." Got a pretty good response rate. Below 50%, but still got enough contributions to amaze the rest of the CUUPS people. I may wind up with a permanent job with this. Next time we don't put the basket out beforehand. That way I won't be tempted to slug the sixth sullen teenager to tell me "I already donated" when only two people had.

According to my mom I'm following in my grandmother's footsteps--she was a tremendous fundraiser for the parish.

The ritual went well. I was up after the circle was sealed, so I didn't have much time to work up a major case of stagefright (already had a minor one). But first we had to have the church announcements of upcoming activities. Necessary, I know, but it really breaks the mood. Then it was showtime. I did well--projected, moved about the circle so I was giving everyone eye contact, didn't trip over my toungue more than once, and only left out a few lines. I'd been worried about it just falling flat as a history lecture but I finished with a reference to the maypole ribbons being woven tightly together, representing how the bonds between the dancers hold the community together, and "Let this ritual bind our community together so!"

It worked. It worked well. I was happy. I liked the ritual too--it held me at the emotional level and I came out warm and happy and energized.

Followed by hitting up a few more people for money and then counting it all up. It was a good night.
Tags: pagan, unitarians
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