Explain the purpose and function of the Pouring of Waters for an ADF Unity Rite. Provide a script with stage directions for this portion of the Unity Rite. (min. 150 words for explanation)
I had the pleasure of experiencing my first (and only) ADF Unity Rite in April of 2010 during my Ordination as a Priest. As part of my Ordination, I also got to pour the waters as the names of the ADF Groves and ProtoGroves were spoken aloud in ritual. This was very symbolic for me, because I was joining the ranks of Priest while also participating in a ritual meant to bring unity within ADF. It was like I was becoming part of the family, officially.
That is essentially the function of the ADF Unity Rite, to create a oneness among all groups and individuals within ADF and foster new growth and development in our community (Unity Rite FAQ). As the waters are poured over the ground, the names of al the ADF Groves are read to symbolize them being present in spirit, even if they are not present in body. In order to grow we must have a solid foundation of community, and I firmly believe the ADF Unity Rite helps balance that.
A Sample ADF Unity Script of the 1st Unity Rite, by Skip Ellison:
“Our organization grows stronger every day. We are here today,
doing this work, to allow all members to grow closer and to make our
organization stronger. Nature Spirits, Ancestors, Shinning Ones, these
offerings are for you. We ask that you help make ADF grow strong, grow
together and prosper. So be it!”
For my own Unity Rite Script, I would probably go in the direction of something like this:
I would follow the COoR through the steps, and reach the main sacrifice or final praise offering portion, and while pouring the waters between the gates, speak the following:
As these waters are poured, let each drop represent a seed. Each seed representing a Grove within ADF. Let the water fall to the ground and absorb into the soil so that it might nourish itself and all it comes into contact with. Let it encourage growth and strong roots, and may the warmth of our community help it break through the surface and reach for the heavens for all to see. Its roots remaining forever deep in the foundation, its branches expanding outwards in a neverending reach as it continues to expand with each new leaf. Let these waters be as our people and our Groves, a strongly rooted foundation that we nurture together with each name read here today.
And then continue with the names of all the Groves in ADF.
(Word Count for Description: 171)