Last night, I attended the Hearthstone Community Church's monthly Open Full Moon ritual. Last night's ritual marked the twenieth year anniversary for Hearthstone.
From my viewpoint, Hearthstone has an interesting history. The reason for its existence is simple; it fulfilled a need in the local Wiccan community that no other group was filling at the time.
Originally, the gathering were informal. The informal gatherings are part of the prehistory of Hearthstone. The Church started when an "informal gathering of a hundred and fifty" people happened in one of Denver's parks. Needless to say, such a large informal gathering attracted some attention---police attention. Hence the organization of Hearthstone.
The founder of Hearthstone looked into getting permits to continue the informal gatherings in the parks. It turned out that to do so would require an event insurance fee of four hundred dollars, plus the permit for the event itself (another hundred or so). It was just cheaper to rent space from one of the local churches and do it indoors.
Over the years, there have been some changes in the members of the Hearthstone board (thirteen years ago). The regular attendees have also changed, as well as the number attending.
Here is to Hearthstone's first twenty years---may the Church continue to fulfill a need for the local Wiccan community for many more years to come.