Come When You Can, Do What You Can

Goddess in SpringtimeEarth Day has come and gone. The Lady continues to spread Her Springtime gown. The weather is growing warmer. There is still much that needs done on the Land known as Raven-Wolf if we are to bring it back to a place where gatherings can once more be safely and pleasantly held there.

I’ve heard many say that due to health issues or other complications in their lives, they don’t feel they could be of any help or they couldn’t endure sleeping on the ground. These comments have come from both new people interested in what Raven-Wolf will have to offer in the future and from those who have been members for some time.

As I have stated before, I’m not the 42 year old that helped open that Land 25 years ago. Soon to be 67, my body does balk at sleeping in anything other than a comfy bed. Sitting at a computer 6+ hours a day and having arthritis makes doing any kind of physical work exhausting and, the next day, painful. But, you know what? That Land is a very special place and I want to be a part of restoring it. After the first work weekend, it took me four days to return to what is normal for me. It was a good soreness though. I felt like I had gone there and aided in the healing. However, being a practical Taurus, I realized that I had to find a compromise – one that allowed me to be part of this and still keep my body as happy as possible (and also keep up my responsibility to two cats who were freaked out by being left alone for 36+ hours). So, I gave it some thought and came to the conclusion that the best option for me was to go for the day and then return home to my cats and my bed to rest from whatever I am capable of doing to help heal this precious, sacred site.

It is here I would like to address the fact that although strong, young people are needed to do some of the work, there are other things that those with less strength can do to help. Can you rake? Can you take a bucket and sponge and clean? Can you cook? Can you pick up sticks or stack wood that others have cut? Can you sweep? Can you sit at the gate and be sure that new people are directed to where they need to go or that those who don’t belong at Raven-Wolf are turned away? There is so much that doesn’t require you to be a “lumberjack” or a “ditch digger”. I, myself, am mostly a “paper-pusher” these days. So be aware that we could use people that can raise funds, promote the Land and our web sites, write articles and more.

There are a certain number of campers and cabins available on a “first come, first serve” basis right now. So if you are not able to sleep on the ground or don’t have the equipment to do so, check on the availability of these limited spaces with Mary Borden. If that still isn’t something you can do, then think about doing what I will be doing – come for the day. Saturday would be the best bet. The gates open at 8 a.m. and close at 8 p.m. That’s 12 hours that could be devoted to helping in whatever way you are able and you can still return home to sleep comfy in your own bed.

Once we restore the Land, then maintenance will take far less time and less people. Right now, however, I ask you to consider or re-consider what, when and how you might be able to help in this large task that faces us. The end result will be that next year you will see a schedule of actual events with the Summer Solstice Gathering being the primary big gathering of the year where you will experience workshops, rituals, a potluck ritual feast with a big bonfire and drumming to follow. Is this not something worth working towards and being a part of? I think it is and I hope you do to.

The Goddess calls…

Mother Nature - A

Blessed Be,

Elder Maya

Festivals – Past and Future

Have you ever been to a Pagan festival? Or have you yet to experience one? If you have been to one, is there any one thing that was your favorite experience? If you haven’t been to one, what do you look forward to experiencing?

GG to RW Photos0001Our history began at the primitive group camp area in Hocking Hills State Park as “Goddess Gathering” in June, 1983. It was an awesome experience just in the fact that we attracted 65 people to join us. Then there was the rituals, the workshops, the vendors, and the wonderful experience of meeting and getting to know new like-minded people.

Much like now, there were only a few of us to put on this event so some us did double and triple duty. Oh, but it was so worth it! We greeted everyone who came and asked if they needed any help getting set up. Then Opening Ritual was held the first day. This was followed on Saturday night with the Main Ritual followed by a potluck feast. In between, there were workshops, campfires and drumming. It truly was an event that left a continuous smile on your face. We all hated to see it end.

GG to RW Photos0003The next year was at another state park and that was followed by five years at a local ski resort where our attendance grew to around 250 people. The experience of the ski resort sort of spoiled us. There were showers and flush toilets along with a lodge that had a fully functioning kitchen where breakfasts could be made and served. It was here we held the “Pagan Olympics” with unique events that brought laughter and fun to the event. We even bought used trophies from places like Goodwill to give to the winners. It was a great time!

GG to RW Photos0004Then, due to the owner wanting to sell his property, we had to seek another site. This lead us to the Land we call Raven-Wolf Nature Sanctuary. Just before Hallowmas/Samhain, 1989, we signed the contract to buy our 16 acres.

Many of the people who had so enjoyed the conveniences of our former site didn’t return – after all, we had become very primitive. Still, we persevered and began to attract a whole new crowd of people who didn’t seem to mind our primitive nature that much and were willing to help in our efforts to improve the site.

scan0021The first Goddess Gathering was held here in June, 1990 and the Goddess blessed and purified the Land that year with lots and lots of rain. That rain, as miserable as it was at times, brought us together. It provided situations that allowed us to help each other – whether that was making a food & ice run or helping push someone’s car up or down the hill in the mud. It was heartwarming to see these “strangers” come together, making the best of a not-so-nice situation.

GG to RW Photos0006In the years that followed, we continued the tradition of an Opening, Main and Closing ritual. The Main Ritual Feast, that follows the Main Ritual, continued to be potluck and was enjoyed by most everyone. Later, there was the bonfire! Dancing, drumming, and just enjoying the company of each other and the Land itself…magickal! Of course, there were still workshops and we had a few vendors as well.

Now we are beginning again. This year, there will be no formal gatherings as we try to bring the Land back into shape so that we may once again come together to teach, learn, drum, dance, eat, drink, laugh, cry, and worship together.

GG to RW Photos0008During this year, we want to get to know you and you get to know us. We want to hear your ideas and what you would like to experience when, once again, the festivals begin. We would also like to hear any ideas that you have concerning the repair and improvement of the Land and that includes fund-raising ideas.

This is sacred space that is here for the use and enjoyment of all who come to it. We want it to be an experience to remember and a reason to return!

Once again, for those who have never been to the Land before, you may request directions by sending a SASE to: Raven-Wolf Nature Sanctuary, P.O. Box 61, New Straitsville, OH 43766.

If you have any questions, please feel free to send an email to We’ll get back to you as soon as possible.

We’re looking forward to meeting you!!!

GG to RW Photos0009





Blessed Be,

Elder Maya