By Moira Rose Raistlin (no), Tree (maybe), Ruby Sara (yes), and Emiti (yes)
Hierarchy, Visibility, and Paperwork — Who Needs the Aggravation?
The very first question one must address is, what do we mean by “building churches”…? Are we restricting ourselves to the physical construction of an edifice, or are we including dedicating specific sites to spiritual activity? Or are we discussing the organization of a group of Pagans within modern legal parameters necessary to accomplish a structure-building project?
Several months ago, my coven talked about trying to establish a community center for Pagans in our area. Many public sites suitable for celebrations close at dusk, our homes and backyards are often too small for activities, and all-too-frequently public facilities are just not available. We were still bouncing ideas around when we provoked very hostile reactions from some of our Pagan friends. For them, the issue was visibility. They opposed the community center project because its creation would reveal our presence to the larger community. All of these folks were still hiding in broom closets afraid the world will discover they are Pagans and kill them. The mere “possibility” of our opening a Pagan community center threatened them. Undoubtedly, visibility is a factor in some Pagans’ problem with publicly-known and dedicated gathering sites.