The Twelve Nights of Yule
This work assumes knowledge of the ADF Core Order of Ritual. If you have any questions or need any help, please feel free to contact the Priests at Mountain Ancestors.
On each of the nights of the seasonal celebration, we will be making offerings to different “categories” of beings. You will notice there is heavy emphasis placed on honoring the Ancestors in this work as written. Much of this is due to the prevalence of Christianity among our collective Ancestors and the importance of this holy time to them. There is also strong precedence for the use of gender when honoring the Ancestors among those who have a Norse/Germanic hearth-focus (see: Mother’s Night) where we receive the bulk of our inspiration for observing twelve nights of celebration. Please feel free to embellish and personalize this to meet the specificity that exists in your own home, such as including the names of your Deities and Allies for each section.
You will need either a Yule Log with room for twelve taper candles or tea lights, or alternatively, twelve tea lights in candle holders (one flame for each of the nights), plus a thirteenth candle (tapers work best) to be lit on the night of preparation from the flame of the previous year’s Solstice Fire and used to light the twelve flames of Yule. If you do not have last year’s flame, you can either acquire one from the Priests or use a Brighid’s Flame, if applicable. At the end of each devotional, either extinguish the taper(s) or tea lights. If using tea lights, you may wish to let them burn all the way out each night. Variations to suit your own space are encouraged!
12/19 Greeting the Winter Wanderer
Consecrating the Candles
In addition to the candles, you will need water and incense. Count out the number of candles you will need (e.g. thirteen tapers, vigil candle, 50-count package of tea lights) and place them at the center of your shrine.
Sprinkle them with water and say:
May you be made pure that our words and offerings be pure.
Cense with incense and say:
May you be made sacred that all passing through you be sacred.
May our words and offerings pass through you to attain the holy
as blessings and gifts to the Kindreds.
So be it.
Store candles either arranged on the shrine or very near that they may sustain purification and sacred purpose.
Devotional/Family Prayer: Greeting the Winter Wanderer
Light the main candle on the hearth shrine (this will be used to light the twelve Yule candles).
We begin by kindling the flame of last Solstice’s power
and bless this space in preparation of the work to come.
On this, the eve of the Yuletide season, we greet thee, Winter Wanderer,
You, who dares walk between the realms in this time of darkness
When the spirits of all the worlds move freely in our midst.
In your travels, we bid you accept these gifts (offer ale and bread)
And bid welcome to those whom you lead to our fire.
May the light on this shrine shine bright for all who come in peace
As allies and kin.
Winter Wanderer, may your travels bring blessings of prosperity and love
in every place you rest.
Winter Wanderer, accept our offerings!