Celebrating Earth Spirituality Event - What Happened?  

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Well, I was unable to attend but from what I have read and what I have been told (by those who were there) it went better than expected but there was at least one incident where police had to be involved.

The news article in LancasterOnline.com is titled 'Bewitched, without incident' but it seems that reporter left before the incident! The RPW were greeted by praying/protesting Christians.
"Religious freedoms and convictions became the point of contention and some shop owners decided to close their businesses Saturday. Most, however, remained open. Gift shop owner Phyllis Cook said her shop is open every day but Tuesdays and Wednesdays. When asked if she considered closing for the event, she said, "I have had great business today."

An antique shop owner in the village left a message with the Sunday News on Friday evening saying that her business, and others, would be closed in protest.

The proprietor, who did not want to be identified, said businesses and community leaders were neither notified nor consulted about the event until they read about the festival in the paper. The business owner said many churches would have people coming out to "circle the area in prayer."
Ephraim Renno and Luke Martin, of Denver, were among those who did just that.

"People will always try to fill the vacuum of life," Martin said. "Without God, they will turn to other religions." Martin and Renno were at the festival with about 10 other people from Ephrata Christian Fellowship.

They were among several others from nearby churches who came to the festival to pray and "witness to those who have questions," Martin said.

He said they were there to show God's love, not to make the practicing witches and pagans feel attacked. He believed his group was effective because he said he was able to talk with people there. "Some of them were searching for the truth," he said.

"Satan is the father of lies," Martin said. "There is none righteous, no not one," he added, quoting Romans 3:10.

Jen Anderson-Wenger, president of Reading Pagans & Witches, said several church groups "laid hands on us and prayed." She said she was pleased at the turnout, and said her group was received "very peacefully."

Anderson-Wenger said having the church groups come, and pray over them, was an "amazing spiritual experience."
ARTICLE

Apparently these groups did corner several children and ask what religion they were. According to one of the members of RPW:

"There were protesters preaching, at first just to adults, some blocked commerce and were asked to move to an unused canopy, which everyone was fine with. The trouble really started when some of our teens were approached. Within an hour of the start, I had a young woman come to me for help, after being preached too, she was shaking with upset... another young lady was surrounded by 5 men preaching, she was frightened and told them to leave her alone and her mom saw her, called her over and they didn't persist, thankfully. Every one of our 4 kids present were approached, the final one being Cat's son who did JUST as he was told... say no thanks, walk away and if pursued, get security - only when he walked away the guy followed and then he got scared, started to run, tripped, scraped his ankle and the protester ran off the premises... police were called in by the Village's official and they took a report.


The police then suggested to the remaining protesters (who were horrified this happened and didn't want to take responsibility for the man's actions, though he was passing out pamphlets from their own church) that they leave and they did so... the rest of the day was a mix of Pagans, non-Pagans, atheists and all sorts... the air lightened and the day was quite enjoyable.
Sadly, some of our young people in our youth group ARE Christian and saw the dark side of it yesterday and were VERY upset by folks identifying as Christian, acting 'un-Christ-like'... we were VERY glad we had our two 6 yos stay with my mom, though the protesters did seem to hone in on adults first, then our teenagers and didn't seem to go much younger than 12... all in all though the day was a success and hopefully opened a few eyes."

So that's that. Thank you Saffire, for giving an account fro your first hand experience.

This entry was posted on Sunday, September 13, 2009 at Sunday, September 13, 2009 and is filed under , . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .

5 comments

Syn  

Some people should be ashamed of themselves. Why can't people just let others have their own beliefs without interfering? You don't see pagans picketing the christian churches! They had no business talking to other people's children.

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September 13, 2009 at 4:39 PM
Mejis  

I wish people would be more tolerant of others beliefs. The world be so much more peaceful.


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September 14, 2009 at 2:22 PM
Witchy Mama  

I agree - I don't know why people are so 'righteous'

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September 18, 2009 at 11:10 AM
Guest  

That is so embaressing to see people of my faith chase down kids to the point they were crying and upset. I am glad to see for the most part they tried to stay peaceful. Sometimes protests get really bad.
I am sorry.

September 20, 2009 at 12:42 PM
Witchy Mama  

Thank you for your kindness. Every 'group' has some bad apples ;)

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September 27, 2009 at 1:10 PM

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