Common questions

If you’re still interested in talking once you’ve read this information, please send a letter of introduction as described on that page.

Who is the group open to?

As a coven and tradition, we have people from a wide range of identities, including a number of LGTBQIA+ folks, neurodiverse folks, and other experiences of the world. We are open to considering anyone over the age of 21.

Becoming a Dedicant (and being considered for initiation) is about whether there’s a good fit between your interests and the work of the group and the current members. You get the same chance to decide whether you’re interested in working with us.

If you have any chronic health issues (physical or mental), they should have been stable for at least six months before considering Dedicancy, and you should have access to appropriate professional support.

You must also be able to get to coven events in Arlington, MA on a regular basis. (It’s fine to arrange transportation with group members if that works for everyone, but you should also have a backup plan.)

As a tradition, we generally focus on working with deities from the broader Mediterranean region – Greece, Rome, and Egypt. Which deities depends on the ritual, its goals, and sometimes the time of year. You are welcome to explore other pantheons and deity relationships in your personal practice.

When and where do you meet?

We meet at a private home in Arlington, Massachusetts when we meet in person. Currently we are meeting for Sabbats (eight times a year) in person, and most classes and discussions are online via Zoom.

The group meets on Saturdays, usually twice a month. The schedule is provided well in advance, and updated twice a year, with multiple months notice. Dedicants are expected to be at rituals as well as their classes.

  • Rituals normally start at 11am. Sabbat rituals are celebrated on the closest Saturday.
  • Seeker and Dedicant classes start at 2pm and finish before 5pm. More details about Dedicant training time commitments below.
  • Initiate discussions (for group initiates only) are once a month, usually at 12:30pm.
  • Other events (chats, other outings) are optional, and may vary in scheduling.

We do not schedule coven events over three day weekends (using Massachusetts state holidays), over Thanksgiving week, or in the last two weeks of December.

What are other group expectations?

I expect all group members to take responsibility for their own communication (asking questions if you have them, confirming emails related to practical details as requested, etc.) We will provide plenty of notes about upcoming events, it is everyone’s responsibility to set their own reminders and calendars.

Everyone is expected to contribute to potluck for ritual feasts. (It’s also very much appreciated to lend a hand cleaning up after ritual or class.) I welcome people chipping in for expenses, but that is not expected.

We also expect everyone in the group to have an active personal practice. Learn more about personal practice below.

What does oathbound material include?

Our tradition does have oathbound material (that is, information and content that may not be shared outside the group or tradition).

As a tradition, our practice is to talk about the general outline of what’s included before we ask for any commitment or share specifics. You will get additional details about specific commitments before you are asked to make them.

Generally, you are welcome to share your own experiences with others (i.e. if you want to discuss something that came up for you with a partner, friend, or therapist) but it’s not all right to share other people’s personal information, experiences, or ritual specifics.

This article on oathbound material on my Seeking site will give a better idea of why material might be kept private, and what is involved.

Are children welcome at group events?

In general, no. We are an initiatory group – that’s a decision that should be made by adults. Many of our practices include longer periods of focus or concentration than children are up for, as well.

Parents I’ve taught often appreciate time to learn and develop without focusing on their child’s needs. I’m also glad to talk about ideas for including children in your personal or household practices.

What does Dedicant training involve?

Dedicant classes take place on Saturdays about every other week for a year. While we understand that sometimes things come up, Dedicants are expected to commit to being at these classes.

You can expect:

  • Attendance at Sabbat and full moon rituals as scheduled.
  • 5-6 hours of class a month (two meetings)
  • Homework assignments (reading, writing, creative, and practical): time will vary depending on your speed and how detailed you decide to be beyond the requirements.
  • 20 minutes of practice time at home most days.

You can see an outline of the topics we cover on my Seeking site. (Dedicant year usually follows this pattern, though we may adjust some classes or the sequence for scheduling reasons.)

Is there a charge for training? Other costs?

There is no monetary charge for training. I expect Dedicants and group members to invest their time, energy, and attention, but training is offered freely to those who commit to the group. That’s how I was trained!

Group members are expected to provide their own materials and personal tools. For Dedicants, this involves reading six books over the course of a year, some creative projects, and building up tools for your personal practice. We always discuss inexpensive options for each of these.

What if I have accessibility needs?

Accommodating specific needs depends a lot on the details. I’m always glad to talk about your needs and preferences for accessibility and see what’s possible.

Some accessibility needs aren’t things I can offer in our covenstead (my home) because of my own day to day needs.

As part of a larger tradition, some things we do are based on my preferences (the kind of group I want to be a part of leading and teaching), some are open to negotiation with everyone in the group, and some are decided by the elders of the tradition (which includes me, but isn’t just me.)

I’m glad to talk about which of these a particular decision or practice comes from, and how open it might be to changes.

I have a page with further details about accessibility. Please let me know if something that is relevant to you isn’t addressed there.

What if I’m brand new to witchcraft?

If you’re brand new to Wicca and religious witchcraft, I might first ask you to do some reading (online and in some recommended books) or have some more general conversations and discussions. If those go well, we can revisit training in the tradition at that point.

It’s important to me that prospective students know enough to have an idea why they’re interested in Phoenix Song in specific.

What if I already have experience?

Since we work in a specific tradition, we expect anyone new to the coven to need time to learn our particular methods and cycles.

I’m very happy to adjust training and assignments to adapt to prior experience, but any new person does need to circle with us for a year before considering initiation.

I believe it’s important to experience an entire ritual cycle before making a lasting energetic commitment to a particular tradition or group.

What’s the difference between group and personal practice?

I believe it’s important for everyone in a group to also have their own personal practice. This may involve different methods than the group works, focusing on or honouring different deities or powers than the group does, or just having a different focus.

A personal practice might include ongoing learning, daily practice, spell work (when relevant to our lives), offerings to deities, rituals for moon phases, or many other things. For Dedicants, we will talk through options throughout the year.

We’re glad to share what we’re doing, but you’re expected to figure out what that looks like for you at this particular point in your life.

Last updated on March 31st, 2024.