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FAQ

FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions about Living Earth



I am new to paganism. Do I have to have a certain level of experience to be accepted?

We welcome and encourage participation of people of all paths and experience levels. People who are new to their spiritual path are just as welcome and have just as much to share as more experienced members.

 

Do you follow a specific religious path?

Our members come from a variety of paths, but our rituals tend towards traditional Wiccan structure. We are known for rituals that are creative, warm-hearted, and family-friendly. We are inspired by the ecstatic, collaborative aspects of the Reclaiming tradition. We honor the divine feminine as well as the masculine, and the natural world. One can be an atheist too and still feel included and honored. Our yearly cycle of ceremonies and particular liturgies have formed what is now called the Living Earth tradition.

 

Is this for families only? Do I have to have children to attend?

No, this group is not just for families and you do not need to have children to attend. We have many members from all walks of life and different lifestyles, who join as individuals, families, and couples. However, children are welcome at almost our events and you'll be sharing ritual space with members that do have children. Crying babies, giggling teens, and energetic toddlers are sometimes present at events. We're a pretty relaxed group that honors all stages of our lives.

Ostara and Yule tend to be especially inclusive of the children. Samhain is our only Sabbat ritual that is for adults 18+ due to the serious nature of the Sabbat. Dark Moon rituals are only for 1st degree initiates or above.

How often does the group meet?

We have rituals for the eight sabbats and almost all full and new moons. There are drumming circles every Friday and meet-n-greets for new members on occasion. On top of all that, we often have additional workshops, learning meetups, fundraisers, and fun activities. We've had as many as 20 events per month, and usually at least 1-2.


Once I join, is attendance mandatory at a certain number of the events to keep up my membership?

Absolutely not! Just show up to what interests you. As an open group, we understand that people have lives to lead and are busy, so just attend as often or as little as you wish. Some people's participation waxes and wanes, and others become regular attendees, and others hardly attend at all. It's all OK! 

Are there Dues?

Yes, we ask that all who join contribute $30 annually via the meetup website or through the Supporting Membership button. You will not be turned away for not contributing. There are many other ways to contribute, with volunteering, in-kind contributions, and more. View the Volunteer Opportunities section of the website for details. 

We also accept contributions/love donations/offerings at each event or ritual you attend. Suggested donation: $5 or more per person or family. 

All donations go to supporting the Center and the work we do in the community. No one is paid a salary at Living Earth for leading rituals or being on the leadership team - we're all volunteers, and in fact our leaders tend to be also the biggest donors. 


What kinds of events are planned?

Rituals, social events, artsy/crafty workshops, family potluck parties, short classes, kid oriented circles and activities, drumming circles, field trips to cool pagan-friendly places, and much more!

We host a large public festival for Beltane that is called Beltania. It is a four day camping and music fest which is our largest fundraiser of the year www.beltania.org.

 

Do I have to live in the south Denver area?

No, although many of our members do. Just be aware that most of our events are in this part of town.

 

Where do you have events?

Since we serve the community in the south, most of our events are in the Highlands Ranch, Lone Tree, Littleton, Centennial/Aurora, Castle Rock, and Parker areas although we have had events outside that region. Specific outdoor spaces that have been used are Daniels Park, Babi Yar Park, and Judge Cook Park.

 

Are you a teaching group?

We prefer to say we are a learning and sharing group. Our members suggest ideas for workshops that allow us all to share our talents in an egalitarian way. In rituals, we do make sure we explain what we're doing so that new people and younger attendees can understand and participate as desired.

We offer classes with formal instruction. A three course series constitutes a year-long program towards first degree.  

Are you a coven?

No, we call ourselves an "open circle" although members can and often do participate in their own covens outside of Living Earth.  Usually it’s just Wiccans and Witches who tend to use the term “coven” and we include a far more extensive and inclusive traditions than what can be termed Wicca. While some of our members may embrace that term personally, it does not reflect the larger whole of the organization. 

 

Are you a Church?

Yes. Just not a Christian church. We are a church since we are an organization created for religious and spiritual purposes and as with all churches we are automatically 501c3 tax exempt.

Who is in charge?

Our group is led by a Board of Directors. We have a Clergy Council that makes the day to day decisions and leads us spiritually; both active clergy and clergy in training are on this council. Our Cornerstone Committee includes clergy as well as teachers. Initiate Circle includes those who have completed our classes and have been initiated as full first degree members.

See our Articles of Incorporation and Bylaws for all details, posted in our Files area at meetup.com/livingearth.

 

How do you decide what events are happening and who is leading them?

The clergy council decides on the major events such as Sabbats and Full Moon rituals. Any Living Earth members, particularly initiates, who come to the planning meetings and attend regularly can volunteer to lead an event or ritual or suggest ideas.

 

How do I get involved?

Join the meetup at www.meetup.com/livingearth and start by attending events on the calendar. Take part in the conversations on the message board and just make yourself known to the others in the group. All are welcome here. 

Do you charge for rituals, meetups or events?

We pride ourselves on providing free public ceremonies and other events. However, we do request donations because we have significant expenses associated with leasing a building, utilities, the website, and ritual supplies, to name a few. Your donation keeps the doors open and is an exchange of energy that says you value what Living Earth offers to you and your community.

Sometimes there are special workshops where tuition is necessary, or we are sponsoring a musical performance for which there are tickets. Usually we request a $5-10 donation per person or family at drum circles, rituals, and other events as you are able. 

Most people contribute a suggested donation of $5 per event when no fee is posted.

 

What dress do you wear at rituals?

We do not wear clergy robes or other formal dress. Whatever you are comfortable wearing is fine. Some people wear lots of jewelry and dress up, others not so much. Quite a few of us can be easily mistaken for the average Highlands Ranch soccer mom (gasp!). Others, not quite so. We're a pretty casual group and we recommend wearing whatever you are comfortable in! 

What expectations do you have of members and guests?

There are very few expectations - you may observe and participate to your own level of comfort, and you do not need to have any background or knowledge base in Wicca or any other tradition to attend or participate. We only ask that you keep in mind several key values: respect for self and others, clear yourself of negativity before entering, be true to yourself, and just relax, enjoy yourself, and have a good time. And please try to arrive on time if at all possible.