The woman celebrating her crone status prepares by having a ritual bath before the ceremony, dressing in clothes that empower her and give her confidence. Close friends and the High Priestess gather and create a circle, preferably in an outdoor space. A cloth can be used to create an altar with images of crone goddesses and a cauldron to represent knowledge/wisdom with appropriate incense burning (such as frankincense, patchouli and thyme).
Using a besom, the HP sweeps negativity away as she casts the circle:
We cast this circle 3 times round,
to create our sacred ground.
The circle is cast to protect and defend,
with no beginning and no end.
Element of Earth, support this circle with your strength and stability. Allow us to connect to our roots and acknowledge our ancestors. Hail and welcome.
Element of Air, help us to express our wisdom. Make this circle a safe space to share our knowledge with one another. Hail and welcome.
Element of Fire, with your flames of inspiration, lend this circle your passionate energy for our celebrations. Hail and welcome.
Element of Water, cleanse this circle with your healing flow, and keep us afloat as we express our emotions in this place. Hail and welcome.
Crone goddess, wise woman, keeper of secrets, we welcome you to our circle. Allow us to look back to those who have gone before, and look forward to the future generations. Hail and welcome.
HP welcomes everyone and talks about 'crones':
Our society has hidden crones under a cloak of being considered 'old, past it, wrinkled and worthless', even by themselves. But times are changing and women are now embracing this stage in their lives: we are wise women, healers, teachers, imparters of knowledge. Crone is a word of power, wisdom and inspiration and is embraced by those in this circle. This ceremony is to acknowledge and celebrate the croning of ______, of all they have learned and all that they will come to know in the future.
(Turning to _______) - As you step through the doorway into cronehood, may your journey be filled with joy and the support of those in this circle.
Group begin drumming as the new crone walks round the circle three times. Then selected members of the group form an archway with their arms to form a tunnel/doorway - the new crone walks through the symbolic threshold into cronehood. HP 'crowns' the new crone with a garland of evergreen/seasonal foliage and presents her with 4 crystals to represent the 4 parts of life:
Clear quartz to represent the Maiden; Moonstone to represent the Mother; Chrysocolla to represent the Matriarch; Black obsidian to represent the Crone.
Then the circle is seated and a talking stick is passed round for each person to share memories or knowledge about a 'wise woman' who has helped or inspired them. If possible, the new crone (and those in circle) can be ceremonially tattooed if this can be organised.
Share food and drink in celebration.
Closing the circle:
Crone goddess in all your guises, thank you for lending your wisdom to this circle. We bid you hail and farewell.
Element of Water, we give thanks for your healing, cleansing flow, allowing us to feel refreshed and renewed. Hail and farewell.
Element of Fire, thank you for lending us warmth and transforming flames for the next step in life's journey. Hail and farewell.
Element of Air, thank you for aiding us in communicating our knowledge and wisdom in this circle. Hail and farewell.
Element of Earth, we give thanks for your aid in connecting to our ancestors, allowing us to look back as well as forwards. Hail and farewell.
Uncast this circle 3 times back,
we have shared knowledge that others might lack.
This circle is open but never broken,
the crone in us has been awoken!
So mote it be.