May 2008 News from Handfastings.org
A Merry Beltaine to All!
Handfastings.org Turns Four!
by Shira
We're Celebrating Our Anniversary

Ok, so we're still in the toddler stage, but we've come a long way!  Founded on Beltaine 2004, we now have listed more than 70 officiants from four different countries, including the U.S., U.K., Canada and Australia.  I'm pleased to say that all our officiants are in good company.

Happy Beltaine

The Bride's Day

Also known as May Day, Beltaine is traditionally a day for handfastings, weddings, and sacred unions.  Beltaine, held on or around May 1st, is the celebration of the sacred union between the Goddess and the God.  The Celtic Goddess of this holiday is Brigid (pronounced "breed"), which is from where the word bride hails (and most likely the word breed, too!). 

Today we celebrate the rites of love and fertility.  We dance the maypole, jump the fire, play tag, and crown the May Queen with a wreath of fresh flowers.  Brides on this day, and in general, are considered to be a manifestation of the Goddess.  The bride's veil is today's version of the wreath or crown.  The bride is Queen-for-a-day and is truly in her moment - and a Goddess in her own right. 

Changes and Additions

New Look, New People

Handfastings.org is working on a new look.  Please be patient while the site might at times look sub-par.  We are constructing something beautiful and readable by more than, oh, two browsers. 

We have added some new and interesting folks on the officiant list, including a bishop from Scotland, a justice of the peace from Connecticut, and a newly published book author.  Browse our list here.  Welcome all!

Founder news

"Artemisia" Shira Tarantino, founder of Handfasings.org is delighted to announce her new position as instructor for the Woolston-Steen Theological Seminary.  She is developing core and elective curriculum, currently teaching natural magick as well as preparing classes on sacred costuming and mythology to be taught in the near future. 

Sponsored by the established Aquarian Tabernacle Church (ATC), the Woolston-Steen Theological Seminary is one of the first accredited seminaries in the U.S. dedicated to Pagan theology and Wiccan studies, offering state-approved ministry degrees - and the first of its kind to offer live online classes with audio/visual teacher-student interaction.  Shira is thrilled to be a part of this new and unique venture. 


Karen Jackson

We were saddened to learn of the passing of officiant Karen Jackson of Temple of the Four Winds of Illinois.  Karen was one of the first officiants to be listed on Handfastings.org.  She will be deeply missed.  To learn more about Karen and her congregation, click on the links above.

Send Us Some Love!

Handfastings.org wants to know what you think.  Please email me at shira@handfastings.org and let me know if you have and suggestions, ideas, or corrections.  I'm all ears!

If you have any news of your own that you would like to share, such as wedding announcements, news about yourself, anything else fun & newsworthy, drop me a line.

As always, Handfastings.org remains a free service to all.  I look forward to hearing back from you.  Have a blessed Beltaine!

Love and Light,
Shira's signature
Artemisia Shira Tarantino

Joining Hearts in Perfect Love™
Contact Information
email: shira@handfastings.org
website: www.handfastings.org

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