Service June 16, 2024

My Numinous Encounter with a Timber Rattlesnake  Rev. Ernie Mills

Service will be at the screened shelter near the Harmon Field cabin and children’s play area at 10:30AM.  Pot luck lunch and annual meeting will follow.



Serpents, especially snakes, and specifically of the venomous kind, were worshiped by our ancestors. Snakes evoked what Rudolf Otto called the ―numinous (mysterious) or what we today refer to as the ―holy or ―sacred.
The word, sacred in its original meaning, referred to both the ―awesome‖ and the ―awful and had nothing to do with morality or ethics. Venomous serpents had the power to give life and deal death. One example is the bronze serpent. In Numbers 21, a serpent made of bronze was mounted on a cross as a healing symbol.
My encounter with a rattlesnake was both awesome and awful, but the experience was truly holy.

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