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  • Writer's pictureBernadette-One Witchy Gal

Yule-Winter Solstice Ritual

Updated: Jan 25, 2022

Circa Dec 21st –Sabbat–Seasonal Festival

The Winter Solstice –First Day of Winter

-longest night of the year



This ritual is best performed on the day or evening of Yule. Here is the Yule ritual I use to celebrate the winter Sabbat. (I'm sorry but I don't remember where I got this ritual from-so I'm unable to provide any credit for the ritual.)


(pexels-photo by DarksomeMoon)

Yule, the Winter Solstice, is a time of great symbolism and power. It marks the return of the sun, when they days finally begin to get a little longer. It's also a time to celebrate with family and friends, and share the spirit of giving during the holidays. This Sabbat is considered the longest night of the year, and following Yule, the sun begins its long journey back to earth. It's a time to say goodbye to

the old, and welcome the new. As the sun returns to the earth, life begins once more.


Throughout the ages midwinter is a celebration about the birth of the light, the impregnation of the earth and a variety of vegetation gods. The ancients knew that the winter solstice was the longest night of the year -and that meant that the sun was beginning its long journey back towards earth. It was a time of celebration, and for rejoicing in the knowledge that soon, the warm days of spring would return, and the dormant earth would come back to life. On this one day, the sun stands still in the sky, and everyone on earth knows that change is coming.


Times were different for our ancestors at this time of year. The harvest had been brought in, and they knew that in a few months, their stockpiles of food would be running low. It was the season of death, the time when the earth went dormant once more, sleeping until the spring returned. Our ancestors knew that despite the darkness of this night, soon the light would return to the earth, bringing with it life. This night, the Winter Solstice, welcomes back the Sun, the ultimate giver of light.


Because this is a festival of fire and light, feel free to use lots of candles and lights, solar symbols, bright colors, or even a bonfire. Bring light back into your home and your life.

Before you hold your Yule ritual, you may want to set up an altar & sacred space to celebrate the season. Here are some quick tips on how to decorate for the Yule holiday, keeping the themes and symbolism of the Sabbat in mind, and ideas on how to deck your halls and walls for winter solstice. Enjoy the magic of the season with a Yule-themed altar!


There's no limit to the number of things you can put on your Yule altar, or in your sacred space, as long as you've got the space. Consider some of these items as part of your Sabbat decorations.


Altar and Sacred Space Decorations-Items Needed and Optional Items


Cold colors -such as blues and silvers and whites.

Seasonal colors –gold, reds, and greens

Incense –seasonal -Frankincense, cinnamon, myrrh -- all are appropriate to the season


Items Needed to Perform the Ritual

  • Altar Cloth –in cool seasonal colours

  • Yule Tree

  • Cauldron (or a large heat proof plate or bowl with the candles placed on or in it)- in the center of the circle or your chosen spot with several unlit candles in it -white &/or red, green or related seasonal colours.

  • A candle representing the Sun placed in the middle, if possible, of the Cauldron-plate or bowl, with the above candles surrounding it. -Candle can be yellow/orange/gold inscribed with solar symbols and be designated as the sun candle.

  • Extra (3 or 4) Candles unlit placed around your cauldron or on your altar space –white and/or a variety of the appropriate seasonal colours

  • Your chosen God Symbol

  • Your chosen Goddess Symbol

  • (optional) Decorative Holiday Lighting-turned off


Optional Decorative Item Ideas-(Whatever you feel is right for the ritual)


  • Crown of holly

  • Sparkly decorations

  • Solar Sun Symbols –gold disc, yellow/orange/gold candle

  • Evergreen boughs

  • Sprigs of holly, mistletoe, pine, bay

  • Pine Cones

  • Yule Log

  • Antlers or Reindeer

  • Other symbols of fertility

  • Fruits & Nuts

  • Snowflakes, Icicles, Bowl of Snow

  • Candy Canes

  • Bells

  • Sun Wheels

  • Figure of a baby to represent the infant God

  • Wide bellied Goddess figurine to represent the fertile mother


The Ritual

Notice-When you see the * in the text this is telling you what to do.

-Text that is Italic is telling you what to say.


*Set up your sacred circle as you normally do. After the magickal circle is cast, begin by facing your altar and meditating for a few minutes –to ground & center before beginning the ritual.

*You can start the ritual by saying an appropriate blessing or prayer of your choice.

*When you feel ready to begin stand before the cauldron and say:


"The wheel of the year has turned once more, and the nights have grown longer and colder. Tonight, the darkness begins to retreat, and light begins its return once again. As the wheel continues to spin, the sun returns to us once more."

*Light the Sun Candle and say:


"Even in the darkest hours, even in the longest nights, the spark of life lingered on. Laying dormant, waiting, ready to return when the time was right. The darkness will leave us now, as the sun begins its journey home."

*Light the other candles in your cauldron and say: (Repeat until all the candles are lit)


"As the wheel turns, light returns."


*After all the candles in the cauldron are lit say:


"The light of the sun has returned to us, bringing life and warmth with it. The shadows will vanish, and life will continue. We are blessed by the light of the sun."

*Light one of the extra unlit candles, as you place it by your God symbol say:


"Today I honor the god of the forest, the King of nature, who rules the season. I give my thanks to the beautiful goddess, whose blessings bring new life to the earth. This gift I offer you tonight, sending my prayers to you upon the air."


*Light another extra unlit candle as you place it by your Goddess symbol say:


"It is the season of the winter goddess. Tonight I celebrate the festival of the winter

Solstice, the rebirth of the Sun, and the return of

light to the Earth. As the Wheel of the Year turns once more,

I honor the eternal cycle of birth, life, death and rebirth."

*Light the remaining extra unlit candles and place on your altar or around your sacred circle/space, at this time, and if you have decorative holiday lighting, turn it on. And say:


"Tonight is the night of the Solstice, the longest night of the year. As the Wheel turns once more, I know that tomorrow, the Sun will begin its journey back to us. With it, new life will begin, a blessing from Earth to her children."


*Now is the time for any meditation, any spellworkings that are desired or need to be done.


(Photo/Artwork Credit: Spellbound by Kajsa Flinkfeldt)

*You can also take a moment to meditate & think about what the return of the sun means to you. The return of the light meant many things to different cultures. How does it affect you, and your loved ones?

What changes you'd like to see before the next Sabbat. Reflect upon the time of the season. Although winter is here, life lies dormant beneath the soil. What new things will you bring to fruition for yourself when the planting season returns? How will you change yourself, and maintain your spirit throughout the cold months?


*If no spellwork is to be done at this time then proceed with the cake and ale ceremony (any treats or drinks to be consumed-if you chose to include them in your ritual celebration).


*When you are finished, release your sacred magick circle as you normally do.

-You should at least leave the candle representing the sun burning even after you release the circle. You can also leave the extra ceremonial candles burning if you so choose. -REMEMBER to never leave burning candles unattended. -If you will not be able to watch the candles left burning then it is best to put them out.


*It’s fun after the Yule Ritual to go through the house turning all the lights on and proclaiming "Welcome back, light.”

*Many Wiccans & Witches enjoy waiting up or getting up early to watch the Sun rise the next morning


I hope you enjoyed Witchy Teachings & Tips. This is a free service that I offer.


​For over 25 years I have studied and practiced Wicca and Witchcraft, I have been a Gifted Intuitive Tarot/Oracle Card Reader and Energy/Spiritual Healer. I have a strong connection to Spirit, to the Universal Divine Forces and to all things in the Universe. I am in tune with and inter-connected to these forces and energies. And knowledgeable of the properties available to us from these forces and energies and from plants and other natural elements that surround us.


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