What if you had a "Samantha" living next to you?

Wouldn’t it be awesome to have magical powers? At a snap of the fingers,or a wiggle of your nose, one can imagine disappearing from sight, traveling to another place in a flash, instantly tidying up a messy house or doing a complete landscape renovation. There seems to have been a fascination with such abilities during the 1960’s when television shows such as “Bewitched” and “I dream of Jeannie” were popular sitcoms. Even decades later there were spin-offs such as “Sabrina the Teenage Witch” and movies based on the original series. The plot was always the same as in the original. Samantha, a seemingly common but attractive housewife, possessed unusual powers of which her bungling significant other, Darren, tried repeatedly to hide his wife’s supernatural abilities from nosey neighbors, bosses and friends. Those magical powers innocently went awry, leading the cast of characters to troubling situations, and comedic stunts ensued. It always panned out in the end, however, when Samantha or another magically empowered character made everything right, and no one was harmed. The magical powers remained a secret, too.

What if you had a “Samantha” living next to you? There are individuals who not only view witchcraft as a reality and a means to have manipulative powers, they consider it a form of religious expression. In Lifetree Small Group this week, we will view “The Witch Next Door.” The episode features filmed interviews with self-identified pagans and a Wiccan who says she began exploring the religion as a teenager and still practices it today. “I think what initially attracted me to Wicca was that it wasn’t the traditional patriarchal, standard American religion,” the woman says. “It was stepping outside of the box. There weren’t rules, and there wasn’t a man at the top.” While the practice is not common, it is interesting and worthy of discussion. You are invited to join the conversation at Crossing Community Church this Thursday, April 28th at 7:00 p.m. in room 130. Childcare is available upon request. All are welcome!