Houngan Matt's Vodou Blog

A City Houngan's Life Among the Lwa

Animal Sacrifice; a right not necessarily guaranteed




Omimelli’s blog is WORTH FOLLOWING; she is a Santera/Palero and writes predominantly from a Santeria and Palo perspective (two faiths that I am not involved in and so am personally unable to comment on; interested members should direct questions directly to her through her blog) and in this post raises very pertinent issues about animal sacrifice and the treatment of animals.

The US Supreme Court case City of Hialeah, Florida vs. Temple of the Lukumi Babalu Aye decided the rights of sacrificial religions in the United States, but rights are not permanent and are subject to reworkings or removal based on current attitudes and societal mores… recent issues in the news have brought this again to the fore, and I believe it to be an issue that needs knowledge. There is no excuse for being ignorant of the law and ignorant of your rights.

Check out her blog post, and let me know what you think! This is an issue that we as Vodouisants face as well.

-Houngan Matt

posted under Matt's Musings
2 Comments to

“Animal Sacrifice; a right not necessarily guaranteed”

  1. Avatar July 26th, 2011 at 9:19 pm Mary Says:

    A couple things:

    I am not a Lukumi or Palo practitioner (as you know, Matt, I have enough Spirits to keep happy :) ), so I have no idea how many animals at one time a single practitioner in either one of those faiths would have to give to the Orisha at one time for any specific reason. There are two premises here: one is that this Ramon guy was merely transporting animals to a ceremony or for a priest. The other is that he himself was giving all these animals as an offering to the Spirits. The article supposes the second option, but frankly unless the guy’s lawyer or priest states it himself, I wouldn’t trust the Florida press to get it right (I used to live there, remember :) ).

    Neither option erases the fact that he’s an asshole who abused these poor animals by depriving them of food and water in a heated environment. It also doesn’t erase any probability that he might be in huge amounts of trouble with his Spirits if they were *expecting* those animals and now they’re either dead or in an Animal Control shelter instead of in an Orisha’s ile.

    One point that Omimelli made in the post was that priests need to not initiate just anyone, that good character counts in an initiate. There is no indication if this man was an initiate in any ATR but the priest with whom he was working certainly didn’t clue him in on how to transport or work with animals safely! I believe in that case that the clergy holds some responsibility.

    One point that the newspaper article made was that despite the man’s noteriety as a porn star, he couldn’t make bail (which was in the 6 figures). This makes me believe that he’s a)blowing his money on drugs or gambling or something else, and was making a “blood offering” to Spirits in order to change his fortune, or b)he’d pissed off the Spirits so much by screwing up their offering that they threw his butt in jail!

  2. Avatar August 4th, 2011 at 8:26 am Omimelli Says:

    Hello Hungan Matt,

    Thanks for your repost and your kind comments. We really strive to open people’s eyes to the reality of committment and responsible practices.

    I salute you as well on your blog, I absolutely love its aesthetics and content.

    Please feel free to share on ours as you see fit. I am not expert on Vodou but have great respect and love for the Lwa.

    Oní Yemayá Achagbá

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Vodou Boston is a teaching blog as well as a look inside the life of a mostly average city guy who just happens to be a Houngan Asogwe of Haitian Vodou.

My name’s Houngan Matt… my initiatory name and title is Bozanfe Bo Oungan Daguimin Minfort, pitit Antiola Bo Manbo, pitit Selide Bo Manbo, pitit LaMerci Bo Manbo… and so on into time. Im a Houngan Asogwe serving at home in Kansas City and in my spiritual mother’s temple in Boston (and Jacmel, Haiti)… our House is called Sosyete Nago, in honor of the Nago Nation of lwa. Im a typical Bostonian-turned-Midwesterner with a few extra dimensions to his world (tell me, how many Bostonians do you know who serve African and Haitian ancestral spirits through the lens of Haitian Vodou? Actually… more than you may know.)

This is a no holds barred blog; Im not one to limit myself in fear of what you’re going to think. Be prepared for a blog where noone’s gonna pull any punches, and you and I will get along just fine.

I can always be reached at Houngan @ VodouBoston . com for any questions, setting appointments for readings or work, or even just social mail; I am here to serve YOU, and YOU are what is important to me. No person and no question is too small.

Look for me on Facebook, too! Bozanfe Bon Oungan is my username

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