FoDLA Grove of the Bay

Neo-Druidism Fellowship in San Francisco

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is FoDLA?
A: FoDLA stands for "Fellowship of Druidism for the Latter Age". In Ancient Irish lore, "Fodla" is also the name of one of the goddesses of the land we now call Ireland. See www.fodla.org for more information


Q: What is a Druid Grove?
A: In the context of this organization, we use the term "Druid Grove", to be the local branch of the national organization. The Grove of the Bay is the 2nd oldest grove within FoDLA, second only to the founding "Mother Grove", based in Los Angeles.

Q: Are all Druids Pagan?
A: No, but most Druids do consider themselves as fitting underneath the umbrella of Pagan

Q: Are all Pagans also Druids?
A: Definitely not! There are dozens if not hundreds of other pagan traditions that have no connection to Druids or Druidism...

Q: Are Druids and Wicca related?
A: Yes, but mostly as both share some connection to Paganism. Wicca is a rich tradition with numerous branches of its own, some are very related to Druidism, and some are extremely different...

Q: There are a lot of Druid organizations, How are they different from each other?
A: As I like to say, what binds druids together is usually far stronger than what separates us into different organizations. Some consider our practice to be more of a religion, and others treat it more as a philosophy. Others focus more on a ceremonial magic tradition. FoDLA Grove of the Bay is much stronger on the side of Druidism as Religion

Q: Druidism vs. Druidry?
A: This is a somewhat subtle nuance. Typically, Druidism is used by those who lean closer to Religion, and Druidry by groups that lean closer to the philosophic ideals that stem from the fraternal lodge traditions

Q: I am completely new to the pagan path, is it ok to attend a Grove of the Bay ritual?
A: Yes, most certainly. We strongly encourage new comers and anyone interested in checking us out. We welcome people of any tradition, practice or faith to our public rituals.

Q: I have never been to a Druid Ritual; what can I expect?
A: I suggest taking a read at Our Ritualsfor an exact copy of our liturgy. Our rituals tend to be held outdoors, led by a Druid of the Fellowship, performed in a circle around a fire, and involve a large number of offerings to Gods, Ancestors & the spirits of nature.

Q: I have never been to a FoDLA Druid Ritual, is there any special clothing I should wear, or not wear?
A: This is an interesting discussion! I do wear a special embroidered tunic, and other items. My guiding principle here is to wear something you are comfortable in, and that demonstrates respect to the greater powers you are coming to worship. Our public rituals are never held "Skyclad".

Q: Is there a membership fee to join the Grove, or FoDLA at Large?
A: No, FoDLA is free to join, with no membership fees, although donations are always welcomed, and tax deductable! Membership info

Q: Do Druids sacrifice Animals?
A: Short answer no. The Ancient Druids in the times long ago, definitely did sacrifice animals. We tend to categorize this activity as part of "Paleo-paganism". Our current era of Paganism, generally called "Neo-paganism" strongly frowns on blood sacrifice of any sort. However, many druids are omnivores, and as such do eat meat. Some Neo-pagan druids prefer to be vegetarians, with even stricter views on sacrifice in and out of rituals.

Q: Are Druids another name for Satanists?
A: No. Satanism is a completely different tradition, one that many would consider outside the scope of any branch of paganism, more the inverse of an abrahamic faith.

Q: I am interested in becoming a legally ordained Druid Minister, is there a FoDLA Clergy training Program ?
A: Yes there is. Here is a link to the process: Enrolling info

Q: What do you mean by Polytheism?
A: In this case, we use the term Polytheism to mean a worship or veneration of more than one greater power or numinous entity. In FoDLA, we worship many such powers, including the Shining ones, Our Ancestors, and the Spirits of Nature. This is in contrast to monotheist religions who require the worship of one singular entity.

Q: Is there a FoDLA Newsletter?
A: Yes, it is free and online to all FoDLA Members.

Q: Do Druids believe in Good and Evil?
A: I can't speak for all druids in this one. Growing up in the 20th/21st century, it is hard to not be influenced by these ideas. Our celtic ancestors had different views, and tended to focus more on the ideas of light and dark. However, it is very important that anything light does not always mean good, and dark is not always evil.

Q: Where do you hold your rituals?
A: We have held Grove of the bay rituals in a number of public locations, but they are frequently held at my home, in our backyard. Typically, these are held rain or shine. If rain is expected, every attempt is made to provide a shelter of some sort to reduce the impact of the rain.