by Stephen A. McNallen, Gothi
From The Runestone Spring 1998 #21

“Be all here blessed. May all ill be banished, all hatred cast out, and weal and well-being prevail, that we may listen to the wisdom within us and without us. In the sign of the Hammer, so may it be!”

So begins another public religious service of the Asatru Community Church, now in it’s fourth month of, bringing the Aesir and the Vanir to our community.

When the AFA first announced our “church services”, some muttered that we had sold out to Christianity – but as anyone who has attended our ceremonies can say, that’s not the case! Quite the contrary; the ACC honors the Aesir and vanir in ways entirely comfortable to the average Asatruar.

After the opening, we call on the Gods and Goddesses, asking them to give us their blessings, then I talk for a few minutes on some subject relevant to Asatru. This might be an exhortation to strive for higher spiritual development, or it might be a lesson on the nature of the Holy Powers. I tell a story from the myths. A reading, generally from one of the Eddas, concludes this part of the ceremony.

Up to this point we have dealt with the deities, so now we turn our attention to our human kin… “In the heart of each of us do the Holy Ones dwell, as we strive for the best. As in one, so in many, for we are a host, a people, a Folk vigilant and mighty.” We state our will to be strong and free, and to endure despite all hardship.

“Let the shining Sun ever find our Folk as it looks over the affairs of Midgard! Let our people be plentiful in the world, that all humankind knows of our greatness! Let the tongue of our Folk be always heard in the land that the Gods may rejoice in us! Let us not be an autumn without a spring, but rather a people ever-born and ever new, with mighty deeds on the loom of Fate. To this we bend our hearts and our wits, that we may live in the Gods, and they in us. By our ancestors, and by our descendants yet unborn, so be it done…”

Having honored the Folk, we call upon Odin in song and then and then transition into a blot honoring one of our deities. The structure now is more familiar, with the usual invocation and the filling of mead with might. I walk in a circle around the standing people, sprinkle them with the power-infused fluid to give to them the blessing of the God or Goddess.

After the blot is ended, I change into mundane clothes and we chat over coffee and cookies. Once again Asgard is honored, and the Folk affirmed…

So come join us, and see for yourself!

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