Gather in a circle.
stand here between earth and sky,
the touch of the air and the sun on our skin,
the solid ground of this land beneath our feet,
welcome Ella Frances into her family
into our world”
Reading: “We are
grateful for this new being…” by Anne Spring
circle is a sacred shape. When we come together in a circle we come as equals,
each bringing the gifts of our own beings, our own presence, to share. In a circle there is no beginning and no end,
no first and no last.
and night turn in a circle. The moon moves in an endless circle from waxing new
to crescent to full to waning dark, briefly disappears from sight, then
reappears new born again. The earth
dances in a great circle through 365 days of the year, bringing us the gift of
the changing seasons, each in its turn.
the dance of our lives moves in cycles also, greater and lesser cycles of rest
and play, of growth, decay and transformation.
Every beginning is also an ending, each ending a new beginning.
so it is with Ella’s birth one year ago – bringing an end to life as her mother
and father had previously known it, beginning a web of new family
relationships, beginning the unfolding adventure of discovery which is her gift
to the world.”
we shall begin this simple blessing ceremony by honouring the cyclical,
circular nature of things.. As we pass this bowl of flower petals around the
circle, I invite each person to dip into it and scatter a few on the ground
behind them. In this way we create a
special time and space, a space set apart from our ordinary day to day
preoccupations, a sacred circle in time in which to ask blessings upon Ella and
Bowl of petals is passed around the circle.
Honouring the Mother
is a great mystery. When you begin to open your mind and heart to the reality
of what is all around us: the miracle of this blue-green planet and all her web
of interconnected life, the thousands upon thousands of species of animal and
plant life with which we share this earth; and the vastness of space stretching out beyond this solar system
we inhabit, endless darkness and galaxies full of suns so distant they seem
like little pin pricks in our night sky… it is more than our hearts and minds
can truly comprehend. Yet it is part of
the human condition to seek a relationship with this sense of deep mystery
behind and within all that we experience.
my tradition, we call this mystery the Goddess, and we seek to remind ourselves
of Her presence in simple ways. One of
these ways is by pouring a libation, an offering of something precious given
back to the Earth. Today I would like to
offer thanks to the great mystery of life for the sweet, juicy gift of Ella’s presence
in our lives, by pouring out an offering of sweet grape juice upon the earth.”
Ishara pours libation on the earth with
words of thanks.
Reading: "At the world’s
beginning there was a mother…" from the Tao Te Ching
Two quotes about giving birth:-
power that comes to women when they give birth. They don't ask for it, it
simply invades them. Accumulates like clouds on the horizon and passes through,
carrying the child with it.” Sheryl Feldman
bits of star-dust blown from the hand of God. Lucky the woman who knows the
pangs of birth for she has held a star.”
year ago, Kelly, having grown ripe and round, found herself in the grip of that
great transformational energy which is birth.
I have no doubt that she, like every woman who has ever given birth,
learned something new about herself that day.
For Ella’s birth day was also Kelly’s initiation day, her rite of
passage into motherhood. Motherhood is a
journey which begins when we first begin to conceive of ourselves as mothers,
and never ends.. In our culture we are
not always good at acknowledging the vital practical and emotional work that
mothers do, so today before you leave, I’d like to invite you to make a point
of letting Kelly know how much you appreciate what she has been doing for Ella.
know that it takes two people to start a baby.
Fathering a child is not a one-off act.
Fatherhood, like motherhood, is an endless journey, an invitation from
life that calls and challenges us to grow and change. Each new day knocks on the door of our
hearts, offering us renewed invitations to consciously recommit ourselves to our
relationship with our children, as the early days of family life unfold into
weeks, and the weeks unfold into months, and then years. Dads need acknowledgement too!
going to ask Kelly and Brad to light this candle together, symbolising Ella’s
birth and their new life together as parents.
I’m going to invite them to take this opportunity, in front of family
and friends, to voice their love and appreciation for each other as parents and
their commitment to support and nurture each other and their beautiful little
girl through the years ahead.
Kelly & Brad to light candle, and speak a few words to each other from their hearts.
“Life is a gift of Spirit.
Yet it is also a gift from our ancestors.
We enter the world through our mother’s body, but our own bodies are also
the direct result of the accumulated life-experience and genetic inheritance
that is our family line. Without strong
roots connecting us into the dark soil, no flower!
So today I’d like to ask
Ella’s grandparents if they would like to offer a blessing to Ella on behalf of
all her ancestors – their own parents, grandparents, great grandparents, all the way back… ”
Grandmother or grandfather choose one of attached
prayers or blessings to read. Give Ella
Blessings of earth – Someone from the circle sprinkles some rice
over her head
as Ishara says
“We offer you blessings of earth, of ancient
rock and rich fertile soil, nourishment and sensory delight to feed your body
and your spirit, and bring you the gifts of steadfastness and strength, so you
may grow tall and upright as a tree with its roots deep into the ground.”
Blessings of water – Someone
from the circle sprinkles some on her
as Ishara says
“We offer you blessings of water, of raindrops
and lush wetlands and the wide rolling ocean, to bring you emotional
sensitivity and resilience, flexibility and perseverance, and dreams of the
treasures in the deeps of your soul “
Blessings of fire – Someone from
the circle lights a sparkler from the candle and sharing it with Ella in
whatever way is going to work
as Ishara says
offer you blessings of fire, of sparks and flame and campfires under starry
skies, to bring you passion, energy and enthusiasm to ignite hope and joy in
your own heart and the hearts of those whose lives touch yours”
Blessings of air – using a small hand-fan
as Ishara says
offer you blessings of air, of the cooling sea-breeze and the wild winter
westerlies, of the perfect stillness of a clear blue day, to lift your spirits
up and inspire you, so that you greet the great adventure of life with easy
breathing and a clear calm mind.”
(Possible song for all to join in with – "Tall trees, warm fire…”)
“Ella Frances we bless you
and welcome you into this family and into your world. May the Goddess bless you
and keep you, now, and throughout your life.”
Three bells to end the ceremony.
Reading "We are grateful for
this new being.." by Anne Spring