Newsletter Vol. 2 No. 5
THE BLESSING ALTAR AND THE GOLDEN SURFER AT MISSIONARY INDEPENDENT SPIRITUAL CHURCH
CANDLE SERVICE MANUALBecause we set so many lights for clients -- often as many as 20 per day, with as many as 180 burning at any given time -- we have found it in our best interests to prepare a manual of service for those engaged in the work of dressing, praying over, and tending the lights. This manual is 16 pages long, typeset, and was written by Pastor Yronwode in July, 2007.
Perhaps most my readers are familiar with the works of prayer, petition, and praise are conducted in the performance of a candle service. But did you ever stop to think what it would take to keep an average of 164 candles going every day, and to make sure that each and every client and church member who requested a light, or a series of lights, be given a full interpretation of the resultant divination?
It's a full-time job as well as a spiritual ministry.
It would be too tedious to reprint the entire manual here, but Ia few sections of the complete work -- pages 9 through 14 -- might be of interest to church visitors and supporters, especially those who do their own candle work at home on behalf of themselves and their families, or who hold candle services on behalf of clients. This is the section of the manual that describes the physical "blocking" and the clerical record-keeping that goes into a daily candle service.
So, herewith is an excerpt from "The Missionary Independent Spiritual Church Candle Service Manual, for the Use of Ministers, Deacons, and Candle-Servers," which, i hope, will give you a good idea of what it's like to be a full-time Deacon Candle Server or Candle Service Minister at our church:
The Missionary Independent Spiritual Church Candle Service Manual for the Use of Ministers, Deasons, and Candle-Servers (c) 2007 catherine yronwode All rights reserved under International and Pan-American Copyright Conventions. No part of this publication can be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any format by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without the written permission of the copyright owner. Text: catherine yronwode Production: nagasiva yronwode First Edition 2007 Published by The Lucky Mojo Curio Co. 6632 Covey Road Forestville, California 95436 Printed in the United States of America. ----- HOW TO CONDUCT A CANDLE SERVICE [Pages 9 - 14 of the booklet, reprinted here, describe one cycle of candle service from start to finish.] INVOCATION We begin the day's candle services by ringing the gong outside the church. At that time you may make a brief invocatory prayer for the success of the work and for the needs of the clients on whose behalf you are working. EXHALE In order to make room for new candles, we must open up places on the altars. This is like exhaling before taking in a new breath. Remove all burned-out candles from all of the altars. If they have long vertical white streaks, remember which altar they came from, as the direction on those streaks is of importance in interpretation. * Set the candles on the table in alphabetical order by client surnames * Pull the RED FOLDER of IN PROGRESS candles * Pull the OFFICE COPIES of all candles * Pull the FILE BOXES of PICTURES and PETITIONS * Prepare your TOOLS: matches, clear tape, white sticky paper, a pen, wicks, a hole-poker, parchment paper, tongs, small envelopes, etc. Proceed to MATCHING CANDLES TO PAPERWORK. MATCHING CANDLES TO PAPERWORK There are two parts to this: matching pulled candles to orders in the RED FOLDER and matching finished invoices to our OFFICE COPIES. RED FOLDER For each burned-out candle, find and pull the corresponding Customer Copy invoice and Candle Report packet from the Red Folder. OFFICE COPIES If this is the only or the last Candle Report of its invoice-set, find and pull the Office Copy of the invoice. If it is not the last Report in a series, don't pull the Office Copy because you won't need it at this time. Be careful to match INVOICE NUMBERS of candles to Reports in the red folder, as clients may have same-named candles set on different invoices. Proceed to REPORTING. REPORTING OUR CLIENTS EXPECT REPORTS All orders for vigil lights are given CANDLE REPORT SHEETS. Once an order is started, its reports are kept in the RED FOLDER. IF YOU PULL THE CANDLE, YOU WRITE THE REPORT If your report completes a set of reports for a client, you must see that the full report-set is mailed to the client. Fill out the candle report, including your NAME, the candle's APPEARANCE, and your INTERPRETATION. REPORTING YOUR NAME Use your full first name, not initials. Also fill in the date. REPORTING THE CANDLE'S APPEARANCE Limit description to 1 1/2 lines. Use keywords and phrases, like: * a clear, clean burn; lightly smoky; white cloudy smoke marks * white smokey streaks; evenly grey and smoky * a dark, sooty burn; black soot at top but clear at bottom * down one side (describe side relative to map orientation on altar) * stuck wax and/or herbal residue (describe area) * unburned wax at bottom (tell how deep in approximate inches) * burned label (describe area that is burned and how badly) * cracked glass (describe area) REPORTING YOUR INTERPRETATION Fill the space with your interpretation. Don't go over the dotted line. To save space, thiink in keywords and short phrases, like these: * good outcome; looks good; successful; favourable; hopeful signs * communication issues; hidden issues; past issues * delays and obstacles. sorrow and tears; some problems remain * candle went out and had to be relit; there is resistance * possible enemy work; poor prognosis; may need to do more work If this candle report is not the last on the invoice, return it to the red folder and skip to TRANSFERRING, RE-USING, AND RECYCLING. If this candle report is the only or last in the invoice, proceed to CLIPPING, DATING, FILING. CLIPPING, DATING, FILING If all the reports on the invoice are complete, CONGRATULATIONS. You have now completed a finished "product order." Like all products, this one must be shipped to the customer -- and when it comes to shipping, Candle Reports are treated exactly like any other item we ship. Fold the Candle Report (one or a set) in thirds. Tape it closed. Take it and the pulled office copy of the invoice to the packing area. Put the completed report into the outgoing mail box. Go to the packing table and fill out the office copy of the invoice with your name as PULLER and SHIPPER. CLIPPING Clip off the address, just like you were going to use it as an address label for a regular package. You do not need to use it, so simply shred it. DATING For "Date Shipped" put today's if it is early, or tomorrow's or next Monday's if it is late or if you are doing this work on the weekend. FILING Place the clipped and dated office copy of the invoice in Susie's box so she can enter it into our computer system. Proceed to TRANSFERRING, RE-USING, AND RECYCLING. TRANSFERRING, RE-USING, AND RECYCLING There are three parts parts to transferring, re-using, and recycling -- transferring petitions from one candle to another when they are set in a series or run, putting away finished petitions and pictures for re-use by the same client at a later date, and recycling candle glass. TRANSFERRING PETITIONS IN A SERIES If the petitions were made correctly (as described later), they will contain the name of the client, the name of the candle, a series number (e.g. "1 of 5") and, possibly, the words "TRANSFER PETITION", which is sometimes shortened to "Xfer". Locate the next candle in the series (on the floor), pull the petition from the old candle, and tape it on the next candle. RE-USING PETITIONS, PICTURES, AND PAPERS Our regular clients expect us to keep their petitions and pictures on file. When taking down a finished candle, put its accompanying pictures and/or petitions into the file drawers, alphabetically. There should be a dated envelope for each client. Envelopes of clients who have not had lights set within the past 3 months are stored in boxes in the back office. RECYCLING CANDLE GLASS Place empty candle glasses in the recycling bin whole and unbroken. Proceed to INHALE. INHALE Now that you have cleared spaces on the altar and dealt with finished lights, you can take a new breath and set candles on the altars. This work of "inhaling" is done in an orderly progression, as follows: THE ORDER OF LIGHTING CANDLES Working in an orderly manner decreases mistakes, especially those caused by telephone calls and walk-in customer interruptions. Here are the general principles -- detailed instructions follow on the paged noted: * Candles that have gone out prematurely and are to be relit go first, if possible being returned to the altar from whence they came. Be sure that you have marked their Candle Reports with the date of relighting. See below. * Candles being burned in a series, with transferred Petitions, are lit second. Be sure you actually have the next candle in the series. See page 13. * Pending candles that have been fixed but are waiting on the floor (e.g. solo candles, dated candles whose date has come up, or #1 candles of a new series) follow in third place. See page 13. * New orders that you fix today are lit last. See pages 13 - 14. RE-WICK AND RE-LIGHT CANDLES THAT ARE OUT Pull the Candle Reports for all candles in need of relighting. On them, write the words "Re-lit, [Date] by [Name]." To re-wick, drive a hole down next to the wick, touching it if possible. Drop in a length of clipped wick as a splint. Pray briefly, light the splint (using tongs if it is far down), take the lit candle back to its altar, and re-file its Candle Report in the Red Folder. LIGHT CANDLES WITH TRANSFERRED PETITIONS The Candle Report for the previous candle in the series should already have been finished (see page 10) and the transferred petition for it should already be on the next candle in the series (see page 11), so all that remains is to mark the Candle Report for the next candle with the date and your name. Check invoice numbers so you don't jump from one invoice to another if the client has two series of the same candle title. CHECK THE FLOOR FOR FIXED CANDLES TO LIGHT Looking on the floor, scan the top labels for any solo candles (#1 of 1), any candles waiting for a date whose date has come, or any candles that are a new #1 of a series. Pull their Reports and mark them with the date and your name. Light the candles and set them on appropriate altars. Then put the Candle Reports back in the red folder. PREPARE NEW CANDLE ORDERS Get the pending orders for candles. Pull candles for each order, one order at a time. If you need to label candles, do so, being sure to affix both a front and a back label. Make sure you have pulled all of the candles for each order. Check the order for Petition instructions. Check both the FILE BOXES and the RED FOLDER for work previously done or currently underway for the client. Pull pictures and re-usable Petitions from the File Boxes. If no Petitions exist, make them (see below). Label the Petitions (see page 14) and affix them. Dress and pray over each candle; series candles are blessed as a group with a white blessing cloth. Side-label the candles. Candles not to be lit immediately are covered with plastic wrap (but no rubber band), and top-labelled (see page 14). EVERY CANDLE GETS A PETITION PAPER Please consult cat's course, where there are two full lessons on the subject. For more samples, see HHRM under Apple, Goofer Dust, Sampson Snake Root, and Sassafras -- and the pink love spell flyer under Honey Jar. Placing petition papers under a candle is traditional, but we need to be able to see the names, so we tape the paper(s) to the side(s) of the candle. LABELLING THE OUTSIDE OF THE PETITION Fold the Petition and write the following label on the OUTSIDE: * Surname of Petitioner. * Name of candle (be specific; don't draw a heart; write "Love Me"). * Name of Target Person (this is needed because clients may set the same title of candle on several people, now or at a later date). Tape the Petition on with clear tape. Also tape on any pictures. If client-supplied pictures are too large, reduce them on the colour copier. EVERY CANDLE GETS a WHITE STICKY SIDE-LABEL On white sticky label paper at the top, between the colour labels, note: * The Invoice #. * The Date You Prepared the Candle. * Surname of Petitioner. * The Series # ("1 of 1", "1 of 4", "2 of 4", etc.); note that solo candles are to be marked "1 of 1" so no mistakes will be made. * Transfer Notice ("Xfer Peition") if petition is needed for a series. * Name of Target Person (this is only needed if the client is setting the same title of candle on several people). PENDING CANDLES GET WHITE STICKY TOP-LABELS Candles not to be burned immediately need plastic wrap and a top-label. On white sticky label paper on top of the plastic wrap note * The Invoice #. * The Date You Prepared the Candle. * The Series # (1 of 1, 1 of 4, 3 of 4, etc.). Proceed to CLEAN UP. CLEAN UP Put away the RED FOLDER, FILE BOXES, and all TOOLS. OPTIONAL SECOND SWEEP If the work of the day takes two hours or more, you may make a second sweep before you clean up, beginning at EXHALE to catch any candles that have recently gone out. This second sweep is usually very rapid.
Well, that's just a small part of the manual, but i hope that you found it of interest. As with any spiritual ministry, a candle ministry is conducted partially in the realm of spirit, and partially in the mundane world. This has been the "Wicks and Wax" portion of our work -- and i hope it was educational to those who contemplate undertaking such a ministerial service themselves.
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