I am co-founder of a Norse Pagan group in Minnesota called Hrafnarfjall.

Hrafnarfjall has been around since 2016, and it was founded on principles of inclusivity.

All followers of the Old Norse ways, whether called Ásatrú, Norse Pagan, or Heathenry, should share a common concern right now: The Ásatrú Folk Assembly.

With the purchase of a church in Murdock, the Ásatrú Folk Assembly have gained some mention of late.

Please let me be clear: They are NOT us.

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Hrafnarfjall denounces their ideology. We stand with Murdock in opposing the dangerous ideals they espouse.

On their website, the Ásatrú Folk Assembly state that their ethics include supporting "strong, healthy, white family relationships," define "our people" as white people, the ideology known as Folkish.

Folkish practitioners believe that, in order to be accepted and welcomed in practice, one must be able to trace bloodlines back to Old Norse regions.

This ideology has earned the Ásatrú Folk Assembly a spot on the Southern Poverty Law Center's list of hate groups. They join the ranks of the United Skinhead Nation, and the Vinlanders Social Club with this designation.

This ideology has NO place in following the Old Norse ways. It was not of the old ways, has no basis historically, and even the Gods themselves interacted with others.

This ideology should concern all of us — it has given all of us, Norse Pagans, Heathens and Ásatrúar the wrong sort of notoriety.

It's up to us to change that. Who are we to tell the Gods who they may and may not call?

Hrafnarfjall is proud to stand against the Ásatrú Folk Assembly and all those whose ideology is exclusionary, bigoted and biased.

If you wish to know more about Hrafnarfjall and its ideals, please see http://www.kohrafnarfjall.org.

Laura Bainbridge

Co-founder of Hrafnarfjall

Crystal