Many legislators open their meetings by what is supposed to be a secular prayer. Most of these are done by Christian ministers though on occasion another religious leader may be allowed, usually with some controversy. One by a Pagan minister only happened the first time October this year at the Wisconsin State Assembly. This event comes only after decades of dedicated and public service as a pagan. See details in a interview that Selena Fox gave to Christopher Blackwell for his Yule 2009 edition.
Below is a copy of the opening Remarks & Prayer written & delivered by Rev. Selena Fox, Senior Minister, Circle Sanctuary for Wisconsin State Assembly Tuesday, October 27, 2009 at Assembly Chamber, Wisconsin State Capitol Madison, Wisconsin
"Greetings from the colorful forests and fields of Brigham Township, near Barneveld, in Iowa County in Southwestern Wisconsin.
In this Autumn season, let us appreciate Nature’s beauty in the many colors and patterns on the land throughout our whole great state of Wisconsin.
And, let us also recognize and appreciate the beauty and richness of the diversity of all of us gathered here today in this Assembly Chamber.
We are from many places, many backgrounds, many walks of life, many viewpoints: yet we converge here to serve, and also today, to remember those who have given their life in service of our great nation.
Let us now reflect a few moments on being part of a collaborative and creative community of service, helping the people of Wisconsin and the greater Circle of Nature of which we are all part. (short pause)
And now, in the next few moments of quiet, each in our own way, let us connect with Creative Source, according to the religion, spirituality, and/or philosophy that informs our lives. (longer pause)
O Creative Source, Within and Beyond, You who are known by No Name and by Many Names, including: Higher Power, Great Spirit, Divine Mother, Divine Father, Still Small Voice Within, God, Goddess, Truth, Eternal Light, Reason, Love, and by many other names, across religious traditions, spiritualities, and philosophies.
Watch over and bless this Assembly, its members and its staff -- and all those who are here today.
Bless All with Wisdom, Understanding, Creativity, Love, and Compassion,
in Considerations, Deliberations, Communications, and Decision-making.
Bless All, so that that there is a spirit of cooperation and success in finding effective solutions to the challenges before us,
And so that we can work together for more liberty and justice -- and environmental well-being for all.
So Be It, So Mote It Be.
Amen, A’ho, Ashe, Namaste.
Let It Be So."
Thank you Selena. Thank you Christopher.
To view Selena delivering the invocation Click here,
then go to Wisconsin State Assembly Floor Session (Part 1) for 10.27.09. The first ten minutes of the proceedings is the roll call. That is followed by an introduction of Selena (starting at time stamp 10:10 or 12:11 PM) and then her invocation (starting at timestamp 11:22 or 12:12 PM).