New Fire Ceremonial Time
This is the time of year when Orion and Pleiades are overhead all night. A very quiet and sacred time in the Hopi villages. The harvest has been brought in. In the Men’s Societies, the initiated men celebrate this the Fourth World of creation. The fire of life is lit commemorating emergence from he underworld. This is a sacred time of purification. Young men are initiated into the religious societies at this time. No visitors are allowed to be in the village during these ceremonies.
Wuwuchim occurs over a 9-day period in November in many Hopi villages. The first of the three great winter ceremonials portraying the three phases of Creation, Wuwuchim is a supplication for germination of all forms of life on earth, plant, animal and man and commemorates the Hopi emergence into the 4th world.
“There is probably no more complicated or solemn ceremony in the whole Hopi ritual than that of the new fire. On the day when this fire is kindled all other fires in the pueblo are extinguished, and the streets are dark and deserted. The women and children secret themselves in the houses and most of the men of the place are in the kivas engaged in the rites. All the trails to the pueblos are symbolically closed; no living thing is suffered to enter the place. The symbolical closing of the trail is an ancient custom.” (Fewkes)
Oraibi Purification ceremony 1910 at a spring. Library of Congress.
15th Annual Winter Gifting and Friends of Hopi Families Projects
Donations are welcomed to supply food and gifts for several dozen Hopi families in 5 villages, toiletries for Elders, Kids learning aides & sports items.
Each year we try to extend our outreach to more families in Oraibi, Mishongnovi, Shongopavi, Polacca, Sechomovi and Walpi.
This year we also delivering support and needed items to 29 families identified by one of our Hopi team members as a special project. We made our first delivery a week ago to this group with food, winter coats for the kids and beds for some children in need. We will deliver to them again Dec. 13 along with our main Winter Gifting Project. We return in January and March with more food and supplies for the Friends of Hopi Families group if we have sufficient donations coming in.
The kids really liked the new coats we delivered last week as part of the Friends of Hopi Families delivery.
Please email us if you would like a copy of our Winter Gifting Brochure to email to people you may know.
Sedona Donation Table at Jay’s Bird Barn in the Safeway Plaza:
Noon to 4 pm: Saturdays: Nov. 29, Dec. 6 and 20 Friday: Dec. 12
New Items Only Please
Personal Sponsorships Welcome for a Hopi Family
I have had interest from several people in providing on-going support for a Hopi family. Please email me if you would like to participate. We will identify a family in need and, with their permission, share their mailing address, names, images and you can mail supplies directly to them or send us a recurring Paypal or check payment to purchase and deliver needed supplies and food for them.
All across Hopi, the farmers have been bringing in the heirloom corn, beans and squash harvest which then become the property of the ladies to manage for the family. Traditionally Hopis would try to have 2 to 3 years supply of stored food to get them through poor harvest years.
Photos by Sandra Cosentino.
We give a huge THANK YOU to continuing major support from a private foundation that will allows us to continue building our programs this coming year.
We also thank 2 other generous donors who helped make possible the launching of the Friends of Hopi Families Project and give us a starting base for our major food and supply purchases for the Winter Gifting program.
Hopi Homes: Historical and Today–Creating Sustainability–Traditional Insights of a Home and Empowering Solutions for Modern Day Challenges
Jan. 17, 2015 program in Sedona:
1 – 3:30 pm
Sedona Library, 3250 White Bear Road
An engaging presentation will provide an overview of the empowering community based solutions Red Feather utilizes to address housing inequalities found in many American Indian Reservation as well as traditional Hopi perspectives on housing and its importance to the community.
Joe Seidenberg, Red Feather’s Program Development Director, has over 8 years of experience successfully developing and implementing community based programs both domestically and internationally. Mr. Seidenberg has been instrumental in establishing many of Red Feather’s healthy home and green job training initiatives that have significantly increased the number of individuals served by the organization.
Ms. Susan Secakuku owns Secakuku Consulting, a firm that specializes in independent curatorial services for museums on Hopi content and collections, research and writing on Hopi content and developing cultural interpretative products for educational or cultural tourism needs. She also offers cultural program development, grant writing, and facilitation services. Ms. Secakuku is a published author of “Meet Mindy: A Native Girl of the Southwest.” She is a Hopi tribal member from the village of Sipaulovi. She currently serves as trustee for the Museum of Northern Arizona and Vice-Chair of Red Feather Development Group’s Board of Directors.