A Small Update

As some folks already know, I am home from a week in the hospital. I have had a good start on my journey of healing and recovering thanks in no small part to the ministrations and prayers of members of the Order, Reflections students, colleagues, friends and family.

I have a long list of people to thank, which I will post soon enough.

But right now, I am just so grateful.

Posted in

Submitted by katrina on Tue, 08/17/2010 - 11:34am.

Time Passing

Where has the time gone …

I have been really busy these past few months. It is a different kind of busy. I have been busy focusing on the things that feed my soul, enliven my spirit, and nourish my physical body.

I have been firmly in the here and now in ways I had never imagined. And as a result, I am more at peace with the work that is actually in my hands.

And all of the above reveals almost nothing of my journey.

A work in progress …

Posted in

Submitted by katrina on Fri, 07/30/2010 - 9:52am.

2010 Annual Goals

My long-term goals have not change much from last year. The only change has been in my perspective. I have changed and my view of my goals have as a result deepened and blossomed.

Deepen my spiritual journey

  • Study wisdom traditions
  • Deepen my spiritual practice
  • Build my tradition

My understanding of my spiritual journey has changed considerably. I initially thought my studying for example, would primarily shift to a more formal effort associated with the Assisi Institute. But what I had not imagined was how much my independent study would deepen in addition to the certification program’s requirements.

My spiritual practice went from my trying to dictate canonical periods of prayer and morphed into a continuous process of dream, trance, contact, reverie and prayer. The only goal that has stayed pretty much the same is building my tradition. We are hard at work on our bylaws and secular structure. At the same time, our ecclesiastical structure and vision has become clearer and more detailed.

Nurture the fabric my life

  • Build core strength
  • Open my heart
  • Care for my home

Nurturing the fabric of my life has similarly evolved as I have slowed down for various reasons this winter and spring. And for the first time in my life I am experiencing a slower pace, an open schedule and a calmer mind. At first I thought it was a result of the fogginess, but as I have revived with the help of vitamin D, I am noticing a lack of urgency in my gut. Part of it is a result of my practices of deep awareness and prayer, but it is also the result of the painful work of reclaiming my physical awareness from a lifetime of pain, rage and grief.

Whatever the cause, I feel stronger. I cannot bench press anywhere close to extremes of my youth, but I am stronger where it counts. And with this strength and calmness, my heart is opening in ways I had never imagined only a short time ago. And with this evolution, I am letting go of even my modest self-expectations in favor of an acceptance of what is real … in the here and now. And in the here and now, my home needs to be a place of peace, serenity and compassion – and not a place of sterile organization, overcompensation and fatigue inducing projects. So I let it all go … at least in the moment … and instead I focus on what is the work in my hands. And in my hands are simple things like clean dishes, delicious meals, clean laundry, empty trashcans, and paid bills. I do what I can and leave what I cannot handle … for now.

Share my message

  • Write and publish
  • Teach
  • Connect

And in sharing my message, I am slowly weaving my way out of my self imposed hesitancy and reticence. There is this great song that was taught to me by the mighty, mighty Madrone. “I am learning to breathe underwater, it’s so beautiful down here, I use to think that if I tried, I would drown. I’m learning to open my mouth and say what I want without fear, that I’ll chase away my future with a sound!”

It may have seemed that I was unafraid, but some fears are so deep down, you don’t even know you have them. And so I am learning to open my mouth … and say what I want … without fear. And what I am learning is that the one who needs to hear it the most … is me. And so as I open my heart, my mouth, my ears and my hands … I am becoming stronger, happier and more at peace.

So my goals for this year:

  • Incorporate our church
  • Register to perform marriages in DC
  • Develop weekly Reflections’ courses
  • Publish my book
  • Continue
    • Regular blog posts
    • Studying at the Assisi Institute
    • Teaching and priestessing
    • Offering spiritual counseling
    • Radical self-care

Posted in

Submitted by katrina on Tue, 05/25/2010 - 1:52pm.

Here and Now

What is needed is what we are

The world is falling apart. The world is evolving. Life is at an edge. Life faces may choices. The ground is shifting. The ground is making room.

We are poisoning the planet. The planet takes all we have to give. We are depleting our natural resources. The planet gives freely to us.

Where is the ship that will take us to safety? Where is the miracle that will solve all our problems? What is the invention that will make it all go away?

We cannot escape. There is no savior. There is only us.

What is needed is what we are … becoming.

Get ready … now is the time and here is the place … evolve.

Posted in

Submitted by katrina on Mon, 05/24/2010 - 2:36pm.

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Recent comments

  • Nephthys (not verified)

    I've been with Firefly for a number of years, I recently left my position at The Firefly Community to pursue other dreams but to be clear how much I was involved before I address the statements made, I was a teacher, Priestess, member of the Inner Circle of the Council of Elders, Course Contributor, Clergy, Delegate and Divination reader so I was quite involved with Firefly on many levels.

    I am offended by your statement that Firefly is cultish. Given my involvement as listed above I can safely say that Firefly members are not cultish in behaviour nor is Firefly cultish in of itself. I am no longer involved with Firefly in any strong capacity other than that of a student so I can also safely say this is not coming from a blind faith position. I will be the first to admit that part of the reason I left Firefly was because I did not agree with some of the changes Lady Iris intended to make, that being said, I don't support the idea that abuse should be turned into a political statement.

    I don't know Sean and I am not close to Lady Iris (I live in a different country) and have not commented on the situation with her marriage but some of his behaviours are reprehensible. If a President did this he would be impeached and booted so I fail to see why it should be ignored and relegated to 'personal marital issues' when behaviour like this is indicative of larger psychological issues. If Sean Bennett is allowed to use and abuse women in this fashion, eventually he would work his way through the single ladies in the OHF and what would you be left with?

    2 years 1 week ago
  • Virginia Carper (not verified)

    I for one have been pondering this question. Iris did highlight a valuable point - how are checks and balances established to prevent potential abuse and to air concerns. These are hard lessons that groups need to learn.

    Without denying people their agency, how do you set up a system that will prevent abuse by other members? How far does a group go to ensure the mental and emotional safety of the adult members?

    For example, I know with my disability (brain injury), I would deeply resent being told that the group is looking out for my best interests. It would seem to be paternalistic on the group's part to assume that I cannot fend for myself. But because of my disability, I can be easy prey for a con-artist. How do you solve a dilemma like that? Can this be encoded or is this sort of thing too nebulous to pin down?

    2 years 2 weeks ago
  • Virginia Carper (not verified)

    I have a traumatic brain injury.

    That being said, I got caught in the cross-fire in the Firefly Campaign, since I did not get with the program - i.e. Firemoon was abused by a sexual predator, who for the sake of the community had to be removed. I was shocked at how this mantra was repeated over and over everywhere it could be. I was shocked at how the Firefly folks did not identify themselves as they sought to achieve their goals. It left a poor taste about Firefly in my mouth since I started to regard them as "cultish", incapable of independent thought or discussion. Also it disturbed me how the Firefly folks who had nothing to do with DC, carried water in the campaign as well.

    Since I had lot of free time, I researched the consistent posters and everything I could find, and an disturbing picture arose. The one you described of a one-sided campaign to achieve a stated end, without proper identification or perspective.

    As for the brain injury - I got raked over the coals for making light of the issue from an avowed healer, who thought my injury was a ruse. That scared me into thinking that perhaps my impression of the "cultishness" of the Firefly group was true. (I know cult is a loaded word, but I cannot think of the word that would indicate a group of people, emotionally inflamed with one mission in mind, and not allowing any dissent.)

    2 years 3 weeks ago
  • Kali Firemoon (not verified)


    I am so sorry that we have not met yet since it so obvious from your comments that you are a close personal friend of Iris’s and know all there is to know about the situation from a front row seat. I mean, after all, one who has seen a woman four months pregnant, losing weight and physically appearing to not be pregnant would of course understand the emotional, and yes, physical stress she was under. But of course, since you were there I don’t need to remind you of that. So lets move on to the rest of the story, you know where her husband chose to have unprotected sex with someone else, who I am sure was a complete virgin and posed no risk to mother or child, and then husband went home to engage in carnal activities with his wife, confident that his unborn child was never at risk. Yes, I am sure that all of your female students understand why you are firmly in the husband’s court. After all, it’s always the woman’s fault when marriages go bad. Or at least that is what I seem to glean from your article. Yes, I am Firefly, and I was one of the one’s chosen to help this woman after she was victimized by this predator who seems to have persuaded the pagan community that it is acceptable to treat not one, not two but at last count four woman as though they were simply a means to his end. And BTW I know she attempted to alert the community to her situation and apparently no one felt it worth even a cursory investigation. Oh yes, one more example of us not wanting to rock any one’s boat. I will tell you that in response to her story, several other pagan women have come forward with similar stories of abuse reported to the male members of a community met with similar disdain and an obvious desire to hide this type of behavior. Do I believe it happened this time, yes; do I believe that this community is willing, no matter the cost, to hide this type of behavior, yes. No one wants to call attention to the pagan community because we already have an undeserved stigma. But that does not mean we should allow behavior none of us condone simply because we are afraid of controversy. If one of us needs be sanctioned, then we either stand and sanction or accept the stigma so many would place upon us. We need to “police” our own. When four and probably five women come forth and tell the same story of predatory behavior against women we either act or fold the tents and go home. So I suggest you talk to all of them before you post any more pontifications. I also realize you can never post this but we both know you will have read it.

    2 years 3 weeks ago
  • Cara Schulz (not verified)

    Hello Katrina,
    Although we know one another, mostly online but also when we met at Sacred Harvest Festival, for your readers let me note that I'm the Managing Editor of PNC-News and the Co-Editor of PNC-Minnesota. I was the primary author of the PNC-News statement that you are writing about.

    The persons who contacted me asking when PNC would cover this were not Firefly members. Most were not local to DC, but were Pagans and polytheists in other parts of the country who had donated to the Pagan community center in DC and naturally had an interest in it. Why would they contact me? Because I'm the Managing Editor and people often contact me to ask if PNC is covering a story or to request that we cover a story. That's how we get many of our articles - through our readers.

    As for why PNC-News put two different situations in one statement, it's because they are related in nature and both needed to be addressed promptly.

    If anyone has any questions, we encourage them to contact us and ask them.

    2 years 3 weeks ago
  • Kat, Emralde (not verified)

    Thank you for this perspective. I very much appreciate the voice of the elders as I struggle with my own (not-voiced) feelings about this situation and its outcome.

    2 years 4 weeks ago