Before the plague, services were held in-person on Friday evenings at The Satanic Temple Headquarters in Salem, Massachusetts.
Chairs were set out in Milton Hall, the main large gallery space on the first floor, where lectures and other events were most commonly held. People would arrive after the art gallery and gift shop closed, seating themselves as they came in. The participants would number anywhere from a half dozen to twenty or more.
Services were most often led by the gallery curator, but sometimes by Minister Penemue or other church leadership who were available. When everyone was settled, the service leader would make some opening remarks to introduce a topic for discussion for the evening. After that introduction, the meeting would unfold as a guided discussion.
Some examples of topics of services held in Salem include:
- What does ‘theistic’ really mean?
- Does ‘do as thou wilt’ mean ‘anything goes’?
- How do authoritarian habits show up in day-to-day life?
- What tenet is the most difficult for you to follow?
The format was explicitly invitational. It was important that Satanic religious services were an opportunity to hear from our congregants about their experiences, not for some individual to stand up in front of the crowd and “tell it like it is.”
This is the style and tone that we would like to preserve with our online services as well.