Published December 14th, 2016
Daughters of the Goddess Celebrate Winter Solstice
By Sora O'Doherty
A peace symbol made of candles. Photo provided
On Dec. 21, the Daughters of the Goddess, based in Lafayette, will gather in Concord to celebrate the winter solstice, and members of the public are invited to attend. The event is open to females only, of all ages, with the exception of boys under the age of 5.
The celebration of the winter solstice, the shortest day of year, marks the continual survival of the cold months and remembers that summer is on its way. After the solstice, the days get longer, as the season heads towards spring (despite that's it's the first day of winter) and as they celebrate the return of the light, a peace candle will be exchanged, says Patrice Erickson, High Guardian Priestess. Attendees purchase tall candles in glass jars and decorate them by gluing on pictures or signs. The candles are brought to the celebration and exchanged.
The ritual lasts about two hours, and includes chanting, singing, dancing, prayers for peace, as well as the candle exchange. According to Erickson, the time seems to fly and the event is a lot of fun. The Daughters of the Goddess is this year celebrating its 20th anniversary, having been established in 1996, and has been holding ceremonies for 20 years, many in Orinda. Thousands of women have come through the organization, which draws from a wide area of Northern California from Santa Cruz to Sacramento.
Check-in will be at 7:30 p.m. and the event will get going around 7:45, Erickson says, and continue until about 10:30 p.m. For those wishing to attend, RSVP to Kahuna Leilani at (925) 787 9247, who will provide more information, including the address of the gathering.
If you plan to go, you might want to bring a pillow to sit on; most people sit on a rug.

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