Start by decorating the perimeter of the Circle with pinecones, evergreen boughs, sprigs of holly, ivy, oak, and or mistletoe, wreaths, and holly-decorated candles at the 4 quarters.
The candles should be Green for the North, Red for the South, Silver for West and Gold for East, the candles should remain unlit for the time being.
Set up the altar as is most comfortable for you; a gold pillar candle should be unlit on the altar as well.
When you are ready, stand facing the North and say:
“Tonight I honor the darkness, for from darkness is born the light. From the void, the darkest night of the year is at its threshold. And the Sun is born again.”
Face east and light the Gold Candle (not the one on the altar), saying:
“Powers of Air, come forward from the darkness Enter my circle, as dark gives way to light. Bring with you the essence of the pine trees, Remind me of Spring on this Solstice Night.”
Going to the South, light the Red Candle and say:
“Powers of Fire, come forward from the darkness, Enter my circle, as dark gives way to light. Bring with you the first glint of tomorrow, Remind me of Summer on this Solstice Night.”
Move to the West and light the Silver Candle, saying:
“Powers of Water, come forward from the darkness, Enter my circle, as dark gives way to light. Bring with you the bittersweet memories, Remind me of Autumn on this Solstice Night.”
Face the North and light the Green Candle and say:
“Powers of Earth, come forward from the darkness, Enter my circle, as dark gives way to light. Bring with you the land that now sleeps, Remind me of Winter on this Solstice Night.”
Finally, take up the Athamé and facing East, the direction of the Rising Sun, take a moment to center yourself and begin to cast the Circle. Visualize a white light coming from the tip of the athamé and with arms straight out, turn the blade point out, slowly turning clockwise the light following you.
When you return to the East bring the athamé back to you and say:
“As above, so below.”
As you say this, visualize the light going above you and below you forming a perfect sphere.
Invoke the God and Goddess
“Goddess of all seasons, I see You now as Mother with Child. Be with me tonight.”
“God of all seasons, I see You now as the dying Sun, and also as a tiny Baby, the Sun Reborn. Be with me tonight.”
Begin the Ritual
“As the darkness grows, I felt the passing of the Sun King. Yet, in the darkest hour of Winter, He is reborn as the light of the Infant Sun. The Great Mother who gives birth to Him, Who brought the Child of Promise to the Earth. It is the Lord of Light and Life who is born once more!”
“Awake now Mother – Awake now Goddess of Life, Death and Rebirth! Awaken, Lady, look upon Your Divine Child, His rebirth while you slept was subtle and silent. The Sun Lord awaits Your wakening!”
Light the gold candle on the altar at this time and say:
“Hail the Oak King, His rebirth a promise! Hail the Divine Child, Giver of Life Hail the Blessed Sun, reborn of the Mother For He retakes His throne at the end of Solstice Night!”
Meditate for a time on the meaning of the Winter Solstice and the return of the Sun. When you are done, thank the Goddess and God:
“Lovely Mother and Tiny Child, Thank you for blessing me with your presence tonight. As the days grow longer, I will know you are always with me.”
Take in the Circle in whatever manner is appropriate for you, and release the Quarters by saying:
“Carry tidings sweet around the world and beyond, I change as Messengers Earth, Water, Fire and Air Let all rejoice loudly in the Sun King’s return Teach all that you meet with tidings that you bear.”
The circle is ended.