How to convert witches to Catholicism
Witches can and should be converted to Catholicism, according to a robust new booklet from the Catholic Truth Society that portrays spell-casting as spiritually empty, exhausting and immoral. Instead of “seeking to change God’s mind or violently alter his plans through circle-casting”, it says, Wiccans should be encouraged to surrender this often frightening burden and accept the love of Christ.
In other words, come to Mass, leaving your broomstick at the door.
Actually, I should make it clear that Wicca & Witchcraft: Understanding the dangers by Elizabeth Dodd doesn’t make any silly cracks about broomsticks. But I can’t resist. There’s no eco-bore like a Wiccan eco-bore. I’ve met a few and, believe me, you need to be under a spell to sit through a three-hour whinge about Mother Gaia from a practitioner of white magick. It makes one long for the days when witches restricted themselves to a quick cackle before riding off into the night. (Just kidding, witches and pagans! Seriously, last time I had a go at them they reported me to the Press Complaints Commission, which proved resistant to their magick.) Read full story from telegraph.co.uk
Pagan Spirit Gathering Moves to Illinois
Pagan Spirit Gathering, one of America’s oldest and largest outdoor Pagan festivals, has announced that it has moved its base of operations from Missouri to Illinois. This is the festival’s second move since cutting ties in 2009 with Wisteria (and Ohio-based Pagan-friendly campground). Read full story from wildhunt.org
Coffin abandoned in woods sparks mystery
About a month ago, Scott Owens set out to find a prime fishing spot near Slidell.
The 37-year-old outdoors photographer from River Ridge thought he had found one off winding, tree-lined McManus Road. But before he crossed the woods and got to the water, he stumbled across an open and empty casket that might have been unearthed from a nearby graveyard that was flooded during Hurricane Katrina.
Owens, struck by the mystery of whom it belonged to, called a local television news reporter. The reporter notified authorities and aired a story about the discovery during the weekend, launching an effort to find the deceased person’s relatives and properly recover the coffin.
But on Monday, coroner’s office investigators determined that the woman who once rested in the casket is indeed properly buried. Though Hurricane Katrina’s flooding unearthed the coffin years ago, authorities subsequently managed to recover the remains and bury them again; the funeral box, however, was apparently discarded nearby and forgotten. Read full story from nola.com
The stuff of folklore
THE Rabbit or Hare is an emblem of longevity and is regarded as a symbol of fertility or innocence (a prey animal). The fourth animal sign in the 12-year cycle of Chinese zodiac, the Rabbit has built a legend that revolves around the Moon.
In Chinese astrology, the year 2011 is said to be the Year of the Rabbit.
According to Chinese folklore, the white Hare with its gleaming fur is a divine creature that has lived 1,000 years. Its coat was blue if it lived only 500 years, according to author Ruth Q. Sun in The Asian Animal Zodiac.
Legend has it that during the Chou Dynasty, white hares once frisked on the streets of Ch’ang-an, the capital city. Thereafter, it became customary that whenever a white hare was found, it would be caught and delivered to the emperor. Read full story from thestar.com
Vikings considered Stone Age objects ‘to have magical qualities’
Oslo, Feb 3 (ANI): Vikings considered Stone Age objects to have magical qualities, and such ‘antiques’ were more important in Viking culture than previously understood, according to new archaeological findings.
Excavation of around 10 Viking graves in Rogaland, southwest Norway, had uncovered Stone Age items, such as weapons, amulets and tools.
Olle Hemdorff of Archaelogical Museum in Stavanger told Aftenposten newspaper that he believes these items were buried so that ‘they would protect and bring luck to the dead in the after-life’. Read full story from yahoo.com
Chilean miner sheds light on underground religious life
One of the rescued Chilean miners shed new light Thursday on the intense religious and spiritual experiences of many of the miners while trapped underground for 52 days last year, saying that faith was a key part of surviving t he ordeal.
“We realized we had only one alternative and that was God himself,” said Jose Henriquez in an address to the National Prayer Breakfast on in Washington, speaking to a crowd that included President Barack Obama.
“We were different creeds and churches,” Henriquez said, speaking in Spanish with simultaneous translation. “So I got them in a circle and made sure everyone could pray in a participatory fashion. And as we prayed we began to know the presence and blessing among us of God in the mine. We were strengthened, our spirits were revived.” Read full story from cnn.com
Download: Cult Of Youth’s Unnerving Goth-Folk Terror “New West”
Lean toward the folksy and brooding? Not afraid of the dark? Chances are you’ll bump into Cult of Youth frontman Sean Ragon in 2011, as his New Year’s resolutions seem to make him the busiest man in the Brooklyn indie underground. After quitting his house-painting job and vowing to go “all in,” Ragon has become a black-clad mogul-in-training. There’s his vintage record store, Heaven Street, located in the back of Greenpoint’s Fox & Fawn: “As far as used vinyl goes, it’s highly edited, so no endless rows of Molly Hatchet records.” There’s his record label, Blind Prophet: “I’m up to the fifth release now — the amazing debut LP from the Argentinean duo Mueran Humanos, out Valentine’s Day.” And of course, there’s his own band, Cult of Youth, which has evolved from a bedroom project into a fleshed-out goth-folk-punk terror. Mixing the unnerving shanties of The Wicker Man with the post-apocalyptic strum of Current 93 or Angels of Light, Cult of Youth is definitely walking in the shadows, even if their jaunty, fiery grooves remind us more of Wall of Voodoo, Adam Ant, and Big Country. The Morricone-core of “New West” is the first track off their self-titled debut (due February 22 on Sacred Bones), a rollicking dust-sucker that teams a Gun Club-style twang-punk screed with soaring strings and post-industrial ‘tude. Read full story from villagevoice.com
TRENDING: Obama delivers major speech on personal faith
President Barack Obama gave an unusually personal speech about his religious faith on Thursday, saying that “it is the biblical injunction to serve the least of these that keeps me going and keeps me from being overwhelmed,” in address to a prayer breakfast in Washington.
The speech, delivered at the National Prayer Breakfast, comes on the heels of public opinion surveys that show only a minority of Americans know that Obama is a Christian and that a growing number believe he’s a Muslim. Read full story from cnn.com
Visitors to Reading shop say Virgin Mary statue is crying
READING, Ohio – Some are calling it a miracle.
There is a statue of the Virgin Mary that appears to be crying tears inside a Reading shop.
In the back of the small shop is a statue of Mother Mary. It looks like she is weeping and there are two teardrops on her face.
The statue of Mother Mary crying inside Our Lady Queen of Reading religious lending library is bringing tears to some visitors’ eyes. Read full story from wcpo.com