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Camp for Nude Witches Fights Closing
Reuters ^ | 11-28-2001

Posted on 11/28/2001 5:56:58 AM PST by Cagey

LEAVENWORTH, Kan. (Reuters) - A Kansas retreat that caters to witches and pagan rituals is fighting for survival amid community talk that naked witches may be weaving magical spells in the moonlight.

The owners of the Gaea Retreat Center, a 168-acre camp west of Kansas City that is home to such annual events as the Gaea Goddess Gathering and a "Heartland Pagan Spiritual event" filed suit on Monday in Leavenworth County District Court after county commissioners effectively put the retreat out of business by denying it a renewal of its land use permit.

"They say they're afraid of us, what we do here, the sound of drums. ... They don't know how lucky they are to have us as their neighbors," caretaker Wanda Roths said. "We're very quiet, very peaceful. There has never been any trouble out here."

The Leavenworth County commissioners denied the renewal for the permit, issued six years ago, in late October after a community petition raised accusations that the retreat fostered public nudity, pedophilia, and illegal drug and alcohol use. Neighbors also expressed concern about devil worship.

The suit claims the commissioners' denial is illegal and unconstitutional, as well as violating laws protecting freedom of religious expression and practice.

Lawyers for the county declined to comment.

The retreat denies any illegal activity, and county officials say there is no evidence of any.

Roths said there are "clothing optional" locations on the retreat grounds, and witches, Wiccans and other pagans do sometimes hold nighttime meetings around bonfires. But the retreat at times also attracts more traditional religious followers, she said.

Gaea, which means "Mother Earth," offers sanctuary to a variety of alternative religions and lifestyles, according to Roths. "We accept anybody," she said.

Before its current incarnation, the sprawling site was a church camp.

TOPICS: Culture/Society; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: heresy; michaeldobbs
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161 posted on 11/28/2001 9:08:01 AM PST by blackbag
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To: biblewonk
It's ok, the world belongs to the witches anyway.

Psst. Only for now. I've read the end of the story. One day the rightful landlord opens the deed. On that day, look out!


162 posted on 11/28/2001 9:08:07 AM PST by ArGee
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To: Cagey
Maybe next Kansas will go after Catholic Churches for serving wine to minors.
163 posted on 11/28/2001 9:08:53 AM PST by gdani
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To: biblewonk
Yes we are a foolish bunch, but that is the way He wants us.

WHAT?!?!?!? You're obviously wonkin' something other than the scripture.

I must've missed the part where Jesus said, "Y'all act stupid 'til I come back."

164 posted on 11/28/2001 9:09:58 AM PST by Ward Smythe
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To: All-American Medic
That is a ridiculous analogy, where is the evidence that any kind of sexual activity is occuring at this retreat? The town board in this case even admits there is no evidence of it. I also notice that you have not addressed one question or comment, I made in my earlier post to you about your obivous belief that religion is not constitutionally protected.

It is not, they are doing nothing illegal so they should have the right to keep on doing it. It is a perfect analogy which is why you won't touch it because you see my point now.

165 posted on 11/28/2001 9:12:32 AM PST by biblewonk
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As long as they don't commit a crime, they can dance around in the moonlight all they want as long as they leave us alone.

I have a major problem with these articles.

It is this: There is no mention of the fact that it is conservative Christians who tried to have the site shut down. Now, I presumed it was but then a question occurred to me: Has the press ever failed to mention when it was the 'right wing Christian Taliban' who was trying to do something vile and evil? No, they never miss the chance to denounce Biblical Christianity. Therefore, it must be absent because there was no religious implications in the town's efforts to shut the camp down.

That said, maybe the reason the town was so upset was because the witches were leaving the town alone instead of selling tickets to the dances.

It could be.


166 posted on 11/28/2001 9:12:45 AM PST by ArGee
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To: chriservative
The charismatic movement swept through the Catholic and Episcopal churches in the 70's and 80's. It was the first time in my historical time frame that Catholics and Protestants began to worship God together. It was a great time!
167 posted on 11/28/2001 9:14:28 AM PST by Marysecretary
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To: All-American Medic
No but the issue here is, people like you are using the government to silence something you dont like. That is a very dangerous precedent.

As I said earlier. Have you ever heard of the ACLU? Are you a Christian watching your God and Savior get thrown out of places where He used to be welcome and replaced with Darwin and Harry Potter? In one tiny instance Harry Potter loses and you come to his defence. Where are you in the majority of the cases where Darwin and Potter win?

168 posted on 11/28/2001 9:17:17 AM PST by biblewonk
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To: All-American Medic
Lots of priests were in the Catholic charismatic movement, including Father Bertolucci, Francis McNutt, and many others. Speaking in tongues is scriptural. If you do it in a public setting, you need an interpreter, but many of us have a prayer language (tongues) that's used to pray to the Father. It's His gift to those who desire it.
169 posted on 11/28/2001 9:18:53 AM PST by Marysecretary
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To: ofMagog; Snow Bunny; FallGuy; COB1; Scuttlebutt; razorback-bert; Fred Mertz; michigander...
Dear oMmi,

This falls under the old saying,
"No nudes is good nudes.."

(besides, it is warmer in Florida or California..:))
Who the heck wants to be nude in Kansas in the winter?!)

170 posted on 11/28/2001 9:19:55 AM PST by LadyX
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To: Bella_Bru
Yeah, I think of Bill and Hill all the time...
171 posted on 11/28/2001 9:19:59 AM PST by Marysecretary
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To: Cagey; OneidaM
The "queen" is going to be angry!
172 posted on 11/28/2001 9:20:03 AM PST by b4its2late
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To: occam's chainsaw
...or do you just not believe in the concept of "Freedom of Religion"?

I love the concept. I just wish it was practiced the same for all religions. Public schools teach every religion but Christianity. I also don't like seeing the concept abused by what is and isn't officially defined as religion. Evolution for example.

173 posted on 11/28/2001 9:20:12 AM PST by biblewonk
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To: Hemingway's Ghost
Aw, boo hoo. So now you're calling our court system unfair? Why in the world would you say that, and still argue the position you're arguing in this thread?

Are you saying the court system is always fair and consistant. I want you to start a thread with that title.

174 posted on 11/28/2001 9:22:35 AM PST by biblewonk
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To: All-American Medic
<B> is your friend. But, what's the matter with <I> and <P>?


175 posted on 11/28/2001 9:24:12 AM PST by newgeezer
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To: EricOKC
Deconstructing the issue of nudity with children such that catching rays on the beach is equivalent to a bacchanalian ring dance around a bonfire is either naive or disingenuous. JMO.
176 posted on 11/28/2001 9:25:30 AM PST by eastsider
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To: All-American Medic
However I defy any religious conservative to defend this town.

If this were the federal government closing down this camp, I'd agree with you. The fact that it's the local community doing so, however, is fine by me.

If there was a 'religion' that esposed pedophilia, enjoined its members to public nudity, drunken orgies, etc, are you telling me that the local community is powerless to act against it? If so, you would take us back to the times before 306 AD. And you call us 'reactionary'? Knowing a bit about witchery and what they call 'paganism', it's clear to me that this is less a 'religion' than an excuse to debauch oneself anyway.
177 posted on 11/28/2001 9:29:38 AM PST by Antoninus
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To: All-American Medic
No one is forcing you to send you kids to private school. You have the option of paying for private school and sending your kids there. Not that I have any love for the NEA or ACLU in most cases. But this town is using the government to shut down this retreat simply because it doesnt like what's being done there.

Why are you saying private when I said public?

The law of the land probably says it is OK for sodomites to open a bath house next to or very near your house and it probably also supports the right to have a naked black mass with pig's blood. Just because it is technically 'OK' doen't mean that I have to jump to the defense of such things because in a higher legal system, it is not OK.

178 posted on 11/28/2001 9:29:51 AM PST by biblewonk
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To: Hittman
Appropriate name.
179 posted on 11/28/2001 9:32:08 AM PST by Chemnitz
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To: EricOKC
The image of God reaching out to Adam on the ceiling of the Sistene Chapel has Adam lying nude as God reaches a finger to him.

That was before sin entered the world thru Adam (or, Eve, if you'd rather). After they sinned, God covered Adam and Eve so that they were no longer nude.

And, it wasn't because they were suddenly cold.

180 posted on 11/28/2001 9:32:24 AM PST by newgeezer
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