Ceremony of Remembrance

Needed:

  • Bell (or drum)
  • Candle (person’s favorite color)
  • 8 votive candles
  • Needfire candle
  • Deceased’s favorite flowers
  • Picture
  • Cauldron
  • Bottle of holy water
  • Person’s favorite drink and food
  • Box of tissues
  • Music
  • White clothing
  • Illuminator candles (optional)

Time: When the moon is in Pisces, during a Jupiter, Venus or moon hour, or on Monday, Thursday or Friday

Preparation:
Cleanse the room with the four elements and set the altar with your choice of tools.

Set the cauldron in the center of the circle or the altar. Place the flowers, candle, to the deceased, fire candle, picture, and food on your altar or a table. Place the votive candles in their appropriate places around the room, or you can place everything on a large table, turning the table itself into the altar.

Devote the altar through prayer, light the fire candle, then mix the energies on the altar with your hands. Seal with an equal-armed cross.

The Ritual:
Light the illuminator candles. Cast your magick circle and call in the quarters. If there are others in the room, stand in a circle holding hands. Invoke the Lord and Lady using any invocation you wish.

Stand in front of the picture, and say:
“As the sacred Wheel of the Year spins slowly, blessing us with the gifts of transformation, so does the cycle of life, death, and rebirth also turn, allowing us to fulfill our destiny.”

Say the person’s name three times loudly. Then say:
“Even though you have gone beyond the veil, we know that we can send these blessings to you.”

Light each of the sabbat candles, repeating the name of the sabbat aloud, and then saying a gift that you are sending to the loved one — such as love, peace, harmony, rest, happiness, safe journey, etc — with the flame of that candle, with the following procedure: Light the Yule candle from the fire candle. Carry the fire candle clockwise around the circle and place on the altar. Stand in front of the Yule candle and give the Yule blessing (below), then light the Candlemas candle from the Yule candle. Carry the Yule candle around the circle in a clockwise direction and replace in the Yule position. Stand in front of the Candlemas candle, give the blessing, then move to the Ostara candle, and so on. In this way each sabbat candle is lit from the last, beginning with Yule and moving around the circle in a clockwise direction, which builds the energy to send to the deceased. Blessing might include:
Yule: May the love of the divine be with you.
Candlemas: May your guide light your journey.
Ostara: May you find joy in your rebirth.
Beltane: May you receive our love and blessings.
Midsummer: May you find wisdom and empowerment.
Lammas: May you find forgiveness for all things.
Mabon: May you be purged of all unhappiness.
Samhain: May you rest in peace.

Pick up the Samhain candle and stand before the altar. In your own way, ask Spirit to carry your blessings to the individual. In the case of a pet, you might also ask that the spiritual caretaker of animals also be present to ensure the safety of the animal’s spirit. Say the deceased’s name three times, then light the pillar candle in front of their picture with the Samhain candle, and envision all the energy and blessings built into the ritual being released into their arms.

If you wish to move the deceased individual into the realm of your personal ancestral dead, you will now make the first offering by verbally listing your linage and adding the person’s name to the list. Each time you say a person’s name, you will sprinkle holy water into the cauldron. If you do not wish to add them to your ancestral pantheon, you will state the names of your ancestors but you will not add the deceased person’s name — you will say their name later. If you are facilitating this ceremony for someone else, they need to give you a list of beloved friends and family who have passed away. It is this list you would intone during this potion of the ritual. The litany might go as follows:
I honor my great grandfather, (name).
I honor my great grandmother, (name).
I honor my great grandfather, (name).
I honor my great grandmother, (name).
I honor my grandmother, (name).
I honor my grandmother, (name).
I honor my uncle, (name).
I honor my pet, (name).
I honor the Lord and Lady.
May they continue to bless the living as well as the dead.

Add the deceased’s favorite drink to the cauldron, honoring the newly deceased (this would be the second time you said their name if you added them to the ancestral pantheon). For example: I honor my friend, Randy Boyer. May Spirit carry this act of honor to him. So mote it be.

When you are finished, thank Spirit, release the quarters, and then release the circle. Lay the food and flowers outside. Pour the contents of the cauldron on the ground. If you can, allow the candle(s) to burn completely, if not, snuff them out.