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  • Writer's pictureDaria MacGregor

Lammas Ceremony Script

This is the full script from the Three Sisters Temple Lammas ceremony on August 4, 2019


Jump to our programs and handouts at the bottom for more ideas!


Gathering ~ Daria

Opening song plays: Lammas Song, by Lisa Thiel


Welcome and Opening Prayer ~ Daria

Welcome friends, to our Lammas celebration!

Thank you for joining us, for being a part of our circle as we travel the Wheel of the Year.

Welcome the languid joys of late summer; welcome the anticipatory glimpses of the coming autumn...


Who is the Goddess here with us today?

I am Pomona, Goddess of Joy

Abundant harvest is mine. I care for the fruit trees, clipping and pruning so that they may flower and fruit most bountifully.

And I Myself am the fruit, the apple, the life-giver, the flesh which holds the embodiment of the seeds planted in the past; the nourishment of the present; and the hope of the future. I am the Spring Maiden and the Wise Crone; I am the life giver and the devourer of life.

Look to Me to guard your fragile fields, for the trees still hold their bounty from you, just out of reach, though you see the tantalizing fruits before you.

Patience! My fruit will fall into your mouths, juicy and sweet and ripe, at just the right moment. And then you shall truly know Joy!

Fear not, my children, all shall come to fruition in the fullness and grace of perfect timing

As summer turns to fall, we welcome you, Pomona; we welcome the promise of abundant harvest, we welcome the riches to come, which will sustain us through the autumn and winter, til spring comes again.

And when you crush an apple with your teeth, say to it in your heart,

Your seeds shall live in my body,

And the buds of your tomorrow shall blossom in my heart,

And your fragrance shall be my breath,

And together we shall rejoice through all the seasons.

So speaks The Prophet, the poet Kahlil Gibran

{Namaste}


Intention of the Sabbat ~ Daria

Again, welcome to Lammas, also called Lughnasadh. This holiday is one of the four “Greater Sabbats,” making it one of the most important days on the Wheel of the Year.

It is the cross-quarter day between the Summer Solstice and the Autumn Equinox, marking the beginning of the harvest season. Even though it may be the hottest part of the Summer, it is also the time when the first hints of Autumn are perceptible. The first grains are nearly ready to be harvested, the trees begin dropping their fruits, tomatoes are ripening and the ever-shortening daylight becomes more apparent with each sunset. Before the Wheel turns to the darker months, this is our time to appreciate warmth and sunlight and how they support the season of growth.


Why does the holiday have two names? The word Lammas comes from an Anglo-Saxon word which means loaf-mass, or celebration of bread, and reflects the vital importance of the grain harvest to the community. Even today, a large part of our diet is comprised of bread and other grains, so we can easily understand the importance of this life-sustaining harvest.


Lughnasadh is the older, Celtic name for this holiday. The name recalls the story of the sun god Lugh ordering a commemorative feast for his mother, Tailtiu the Beautiful, at the beginning of the harvest season. Other harvest goddesses include Ceres, She who feeds us; Demeter, Mother of the Grain (and mother of Persephone); Inari, Great Spirit of the Fields; and the Great Corn Maiden. Even Virgo, whose sign the Sun is about to enter later this month, traditionally holds a sheaf of corn.


At Lammas we celebrate the Sun God, Lugh, as well as John Barleycorn, Great Corn Spirit who is the living Spirit of the grain. The Sun God (whose height of power we celebrated at Beltane) actually infuses the grain with his power, and so when the grain is harvested He is sacrificed, giving his life so that others may be sustained by the grain, so that the life of the community can continue. He is eaten as the bread and is then reborn as the seed returns to the earth, reminding us that everything dies in its season, and everything is reborn in a new form, and the cycle continues.


Thus, time becomes an important theme at Lammas. Especially at the transitions between the seasons, we remember to surrender ourselves to the hands of the Triple Goddess, who personifies for us the endless cycle of Birth, Death and Rebirth. Hecate, Goddess of the crossroads, mediator between life and death, is invoked for protection of the ripening grain and fruit. By her grace, she also protects us from ourselves; reminding us to wait to harvest at the right time (not too early and not too late), and thus saves us from ruining our work by impatience or sloth.


The harvest personifies the story of birth/death/rebirth, as we recall the spring maiden, ripening into the mother, falling beneath the scythe of the crone, scattering seeds that will grow as the earth sleeps this winter, to fill the womb of the spring maiden once more; all warmed by the light and life of the Sun God.


At Lammas, we feel an upswell of relief and gratitude for the coming harvest; when we’ll reap what we have sown earlier in the year. Our hard work has a tangible result! And yet, we are reminded that we must maintain patience while we wait for the ripening to finish. Don’t pick too early! Above all, as we take our daily bread to nourish our bodies, we daily practice our faith in the Goddess, that She will protect our fragile fruits as they finish ripening on the trees, in preparation to nourish us and our future growth. And She will protect us as we move through the cycle of our lives, keeping us alive with abundance and preparing us to move at just the right time.


Now, we turn to Barbara, who will set the sacred space for us.


Creating Sacred Space ~ Barbara

Hail Guardian Spirits of this place.

We who are gathered here, come in peace

We call for peace in our land, peace in our hearts and minds,

And peace to all beings.

We ask, with respect that you accept our presence.

Hail Guardian Spirits of this place!


If you have two candles on your altar, one representing the Goddess and one representing the God, please turn your attention to them now, or you can simply be with me.


What will be is. What was will be.

The Wheel of the Year forever turns.

Dark to light, light to dark,

Each season passes with lessons learned.


We plant with love,

We tend with respect

and at Harvest time our yield reflects

the bounty of our Mother Earth,

ripened by our Father Sun.


Truly blessed are we that receive the bounty of the Harvest.

Blessed be our Mother Earth – (light the Goddess candle)

Blessed be our Father Sun – (light the God candle)

Blessed be the Two that are One.

The Sacred Union of the Beloved

From Them life flows and flows back again,


By lighting these candles,

we have pulled us all together into this present moment,

this Holy day of Lammas,

where the portals are open,

and we may use the power of our collective intention,

to focus on where we are in the Wheel of the Year and

wherever we are in the Wheel of our Lives,

The Sacred Union of the Goddess and God within each of us,

and the life and intentions that are manifesting through us.


Sacred Ones, spirit of the oak that stands before us,

spirits of the heath that surround us,

dryads and devas, all who have heard our intention,

we ask with respect that you encircle us now.

Branch reaching branch, leaf touching leaf, roots beneath our feet entangling,

that our Circle may be strong,

a Sacred Grove of inspiration, reverence and learning,


In the name of the Goddesses and Gods whose power we breathe, we ask that this be so.

We give our energy to this circle,

mingling and communing with those of the spirits of nature

to create a sanctuary of peace.

Let all here draw our minds into the presence of our bodies,

that thoughts may be melded with flesh, blood and bones,

that our spirits gathered here may be blended

in one purpose, one voice and one sacred space.

Soul to soul, we weave our circle,

spirit to spirit, we ask that this may be so.


As we call in the directions and elements, I invite you to feel and envision them in your body.


Please stand if you are able and turn toward the East.

I call upon the ancient spirits of the East;

where the Sun rises in the morning and new days begin

The sacred element of Air, offering us

Powers of wonder and imagination, clarity and communication

Laughter, music, birds singing, warm breezes blowing

Blessings of eagle and butterfly,

All creatures on the wing

I invite you to this sacred circle

Hail and Welcome!


Please turn toward the South:

I call upon the ancient spirits of the South;

where the Sun is still high in the midday sky

The sacred element of Fire, offering us

Powers of passion and determination, courage and transformation

Light, energy, flames leaping, fires burning

Blessings of lion and dragon,

All creatures of fang and claw

I invite you to this sacred circle

Hail and Welcome!


Please turn toward the West:

I call upon the ancient spirits of the West;

where the Sun sets and our ancestors dwell

The sacred element of Water, offering

Powers of love and dreaming, compassion and healing

Rain falling, rivers flowing, vast ocean depths

Womb of our Mother Gaia

Blessings of whale and otter,

All creatures of fin and those who swim

I invite you to this sacred circle

Hail and Welcome!


Please turn toward the North:

I call upon the ancient spirits of the North:

where the mystery dwells

The sacred element of Earth, offering

Powers of fertility and creation, rebirth, strength and manifestation

Seed, mountain, forest knowing,

Magnificent fields filled with abundance.

Blessings of bear and wolf and stag,

All creatures of fur and paw, hoof and horn

I invite you to this sacred circle

Hail and Welcome!


I now call upon the center…above and below…within and without

Spirit that joins and unifies all of the elements

And connects us with all other beings into the interconnected web of life

We honor you and ask that you be with us today in our sacred rite.


Our circle is cast.

We are now between the worlds

Blessed be. And so it is.


Sacred Story ~ Ann

We are in high summer and the union of Sun and Earth, of God and Goddess, has produced the First Harvest. We celebrate a time for gathering in and giving thanks for abundance. As the Wheel of the Year turns, Nature’s purpose continues without fail. The Goddess and God are constant in their purpose, though ever changing as the Wheel turns.

For us, seeking purpose is human. It may be the purpose we’re living now or it may be the grand purpose of our entire life which I find is often a changing thing, going through seasons of birth, growth, death and re-birth – just as we know in Nature. We’ve sown seeds and yearn to know that the purpose of those seeds is authentic, with integrity and for the highest good of all concerned. We yearn for guidance and it feels like we can’t thrive, let along harvest, until we discover it. We get caught up in questions of what we “should do”, but these are usually the wrong questions. It is not about being right or wrong. It has nothing to do with what others think. It’s not even about what we want or desire. Instead, purpose emanates from the body, mind and soul. It’s our truth once we reach peace within, hear the call of the Divine, and following the example of Nature, we find that we are free to co-create with the “is”-ness of Life. Our challenge may not even be WHAT is our purpose but rather HOW do we put it into action, sharing our gifts.

I’ve always felt at a basic level my purpose is to stay positive, to honor the potential of any gifts I’ve been blessed with, to demonstrate trust in the Divine and to be ready to help others. “How” has been my question.

As I thought about sharing this, I discovered a lot of the process and cycles I go through begin with the letter “R”. I call this process a Path of “R’s.” At this time of year we can focus on the letter “R”also as the first letter of the word “reap.”


The R’s and process of reaping as I’ve experienced them are:

1) Realize and Reveal

We can let go of pre-conceived ideas and stayed open to the answers from the Divine. When I did this, I found realizations and revelations. We can open to the Divine for answers to such questions as:

What seeds are being planted?

What affirmations have I received?

What knowledge can I harvest?

What new things have I learned and how can they be utilized?

What skills of mine still need ripening?

What growth can I celebrate and expand?

In what ways can I share my abundance?


2) React and Receive

We can be open with courage and clarity to these realizations and revelations. Then we can react, taking steps toward our evolving purpose. What do we receive when we do?

Think of Lughnasadh as a time to thank the God and Goddess for the food on our tables, which represent the fruits of actions taken. Celebrate the fruits that are ready to be picked and the grain that is ready to be harvested; a time to be grateful for what we have received.


3) Renew, Restore, and Revive

If we take a step, even a baby-step, it is also necessary to gratefully rest, in order to allow purpose to continue to take shape.

Summer is at its height, but the days are growing shorter. Autumn is on the way. Some things are ripe, others are not yet ready. Active growth is slowing down and the darker days of winter and reflection are beckoning. There is food to feed the community through the winter and within that harvest is the seed of next year’s rebirth, regeneration and harvest. There is food that will nurture us mentally, emotionally and spiritually. It’s ok to take time. We must rest and allow this time of change and shift.

To harvest and restore, we must cut down the plants we’ve tended so carefully. This is a time to think about our hopes and fears. We hope that we’ll be able to pick and eat all the things we worked hard to grow. Now we must learn to be protectors and nurturers of what we’ve planted. We become full partners with the Goddess and God. We do this in rest and renewal which allows us to revive.


4) There are a few more “R’s” that I think about:

• Reflect – continuously reflect to find clarity in the messages of Divine inspiration and the heart.

Lughnasadh is the time to consider what else to harvest in life. After all, to harvest is to reap the benefits of the work we’re doing, and the nourishment we’ve tapped into - not just physically but mentally, emotionally and spiritually as well.

Think of the ideas, projects, and intentions you initiated. Did you start them with mindfulness? What will you pull from the roots and make use of? What have your initiatives grown into? Did they blossom or never break ground? That is - what did you receive?


• Role – This is not the role that we adopt sometimes and then change for others. Purpose is our true role, our true being; the one that encompasses all the others in manifestation of our true Self and Divine nature.


• Reason – I believe things happen for a reason. And most of all, I believe that we are here for a reason.


• Ready – just be ready… ready for all the phases and cycles. Lughnasadh is also a holiday of remembrance and releasing ( more R’s!) so also be ready to let go of something that just didn’t make it. Not everything survives. Letting go helps you be fully present in the now and ready to take the next step in your journey.


I ponder the Wheel of the Year guiding Nature in an assured never-ending cycle of birth, growth, death and rebirth.

• Nature doesn’t struggle, vacillate or question what she “should” do.

• Nature receives what comes and uses these gifts to her purpose, even the destruction of what is for an ultimately better outcome.

• Nature knows about just being, enjoying what she is, just as she is. Nature doesn’t create stress unless it’s for the purpose of growth.


Here are some questions I’ve asked myself.

• If you are still, listen and trust, do you realize it doesn’t have to be difficult to thrive and harvest? What might be revealed to you about what you need to fulfill your purpose?

• How can you react and what will you receive if you do? Are there ways to react that can be supportive without being entirely disruptive?

• Will you know when to take time for renewal and restoration of body, mind and soul?

• Do you trust in your true role that is your true self? Can you let yourself be inspired by the knowledge that you are beloved and here for a reason?

• Are you ready to step into your fullness? Of all the you were born to create, to offer, to reap?

We call on the Harvest Mother, even now, as we face our fears of failing, of losing the harvest, of making mistakes. She gives us the strength to do what needs to be done, to tell the truth even when we are afraid, to say no to things that are not right for us. She helps us get rid of what we don’t need, and she helps us finish what we start.

She is hope as well as fear. You can ask for her help, but remember, to honor the Harvest Mother we never take the easy way out. We do what is right and we work hard at something and wait patiently for rewards, as the wheels turn and the Wheel turns.

The Goddess loves us deeply. Her rewards are abundantly available to all. I hope my story about the “R’s” will help you reap all that is yours to harvest; all that is yours to offer.


Drum Interlude ~ Ann


Cakes and Ale ~ Ann


Releasing The Circle ~ Barbara

Goddess and God, Source of the nurturing elements of air, fire, water, and earth. We thank you for showing these of your faces and essences as we release this circle.


We thank you Spirits of the East, Elements of Air, of wonder and imagination. Stay if you will, but go if you must. Hail and farewell.


We thank you Spirits of the North, Elements of Earth, of fertility and manifestation. Stay if you will, but go if you must. Hail and farewell.


We thank you Spirits of the West, Elements of Water, of compassion and healing. Stay if you will, but go if you must. Hail and farewell.


We thank you Spirits of the South, Elements of Fire, of courage and transformation. Stay if you will, but go if you must. Hail and farewell.


Closing Prayer and Blessing ~ Barbara

God, Goddess, Beloved Guardian Spirit, and Source of All there is,

We thank you,… our ancestors, …and all the beings of this land

for this magnificent time of Lammas and

It is with deep gratitude that we receive the beginnings of the harvest

and with patience and careful tending, that which is yet to come

Our celebration ends in peace as it began.

May the blessings we have received go with us all as we depart,

to nourish, strengthen, and sustain us until we meet again.

Our circle is now open, but never broken.

Merry meet, merry part, and merry meet again!


Departure ~ Daria

Closing song plays: Rebel Heart, by The Corrs

 

Lammas Handouts and Ceremony Program PDFs


Worship Service Bulletin Lammas - August 2019
.pdf
Download PDF • 166KB


Celebration Bulletin Lammas - 2020
.pdf
Download PDF • 473KB


Lammas 2021 handout
.pdf
Download PDF • 505KB

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