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Friends of the Schwenkfelder Library & Heritage Center

The Friends of the Schwenkfelder Library & Heritage Center was organized as a not-for-profit association to provide on-going support for the projects, programs and goals in both preservation and education at the Schwenkfelder Library & Heritage Center. The Friends accomplish their mission by hosting adult educational programs twice yearly and funding Heritage Center conservation projects.

Powwowing in Pennsylvania:
Healing Rituals of the Pennsylvania Dutch Country

Sunday, January 13, 2:00 pm
(snow date, January 20)
Patrick Donmoyer, presenter

This talk will explore the historical and cultural roots of traditional customs, rituals, and folkways known among the Pennsylvania Dutch as Braucherei or powwowing. Drawing upon the speaker's personal and family experiences with the tradition, as well as particular emphasis placed on manuscript pieces found commonly in family Bibles, ledgers, and personal papers, the audience will be introduced to a wide range of ritual applications of prayers and processes used primarily for the healing and protection of humans and their domesticated animals. Images of ritual objects, original manuscripts, and written blessings will demonstrate the broad-reaching scope of folk customs in Pennsylvania throughout four centuries and into the present day.

Patrick Donmoyer, formerly of Lebanon, Pennsylvania, is the Director of the Pennsylvania German Cultural Heritage Center at Kutztown University, a folklife museum and research center on the Kutztown campus. A fluent speaker of Pennsylvania Dutch and advocate for regional folk culture, Patrick's work blends language, traditions, and vernacular architecture in his folklife research. He is the author of numerous articles, and three books, entitled Hex Signs: Myth and Meaning in Pennsylvania Dutch Barn Stars in 2013, Powwowing in Pennsylvania, and is the editor of Don Yoder's The German Bible in America.

The program is free to the public.

Download Friends Membership Form

Benefits include:

Membership fees:

To become a member of the Friends of the Schwenkfelder Library & Heritage Center, download the application form, complete the application and mail with your annual membership fee to the Schwenkfelder Library & Heritage Center.