Remembering Lady Epona, High Priestess of the Faerie Faith

Dr. Patricia "Pat" Marie Zook, DVM, better known to the Pagan community as Lady Epona, passed away at her home in Decatur, GA on Sunday, May 29, 2016, at age 65 after battling cancer, COPD, and congestive heart failure. Epona was known in the Pagan community of the Southeastern United States as High Priestess of the Faerie Faith.

Epona played a pivotal role in the development of the Faerie Faith as we now know it. Between 1979 and 1981, she worked with Mark Roberts, who had previously partnered with Morgan McFarland, the creator of the McFarland Dianics in Texas. Combining teachings and materials from Roberts' Hyperborean path and his own experiences with McFarland and his earlier studies, Epona explored and expounded upon Faerie Faith. Using the lessons imparted by the Beth-Luis-Nion Celtic Lunar Tree Calendar and the Huna system, Epona emphasized a strong sense of ethics and a focus on personal transformation.

Over the years, Epona impacted many lives. She was the High Priestess of several covens in the metro Atlanta area, including the Coven of the White Horse, the Garden Club, and the Mud Witches. She was constantly exploring alternative practices to see which had merit and could enrich Faerie Faith, and encouraging her students to do the same. As a mystery tradition, Faerie Faith has few dogmas and secrets; rather than shroud our tradition in secret, Epona was quite willing to share lessons of the tradition freely with the Pagan community at large ("scattering seeds" as she called it). She also recognized that each autonomous High Priest or Priestess would grow the tradition in new ways, and that this growth was necessary to the tradition's evolution and survival.

Epona birthed many high priests and priestesses, and her legacy of high priest/esses includes (but is not limited to) her student Linda Kerr, and Linda's students Imre, Marsha, Krys, and Cliff Landis. For the last two years, Cliff and his partners served as Epona's caretakers throughout her illness and hospice care. Even though Epona retired as a veterinarian, she never retired as a High Priestess. Epona's thirst for wisdom and community was relentless, and even in her last weeks of life she was sharing her knowledge as a Reiki Master and passing on lessons to her great-grandchildren in the Craft. She will be missed and remembered by all who knew and loved her.

A service to celebrate the life of Lady Epona/Pat Zook will be held on Sunday, June 19th at 4:00pm at the Clarkston Community Center, 3701 College Ave., Clarkston, GA 30021. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made to Gwinnett Animal Hospital's Good Samaritan Fund, 2184 McGee Rd, Snellville, GA 30078. A ritual to celebrate the life and work of Lady Epona will be held at the FallFling Festival, October 6-9, 2016, Roxanna, Alabama.

-- Co-authored by Linda Kerr and Cliff Landis

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