After their Kanzo with La Sosyete La Belle Deesse Dereale in March 2010, Houngan Liam and Houngan Alistair discussed the matter of starting their own Houfo (or temple) in New Zealand. After consulting with the lwa Ogou Feray, the Hounfo was born. Named by the Spirit, ‘Hounfu Racine Deesse Dereyale’, it is the ‘Temple whose roots are with Deesse Dereyale’. We are proud children of La Sosyete La Belle Deesse Dereyale, and we reflected that in the name of our Hounfo.
A Hounfo is both a place and a group of people. The place is our badji, our temple room, while the people who make up the membership are the balance of the Hounfo. We are lucky to have a wonderful family who love each other very much, and who are proud of our association with our family in Haiti.
As a family we share ceremonies and services for the lwa. We also look out for each other and watch over each other. As an Hounfo we are not an independent Sosyete, becasue as Houngan we do not perform the Kanzo ceremony independently of our home Sosyete in Haiti. All members of Hounfo Racine Deesse Dereyale go through their Kanzo ceremonies at the peristil of La Sosyete La Belle Deesse Dereale in Petionville, Haiti.
The Hounfo really is a family. Houngan Liam and Houngan Alistair are the parents of the house, watching over the growth of the children, sharing the teachings of the lwa and helping the members grow in service to the spirits. This is something that the houngans continue to receive from their own Mamas, Soulage Minfo Bon Mambo (La Belle Deesse Sr.) and La Reine Edeyo Soulage Minfo Bon Mambo (La Belle Deesse Jr.)
We are blessed to be born from Mambos with many years of experience. Our Mama La Reine Edeyo Soulage Minfo Bon Mambo is a 4th generation Vodou Priestess who was raised in the traditions and magic of Vodou. Both of our mothers are very experienced, and we are blessed to have been taught by such wise and knowledgeable people. We offer them our love with each breath we take on our journey. Ayibobo!
Hounfo Racine Deesse Deryale has been blessed by the lwa. We have members from New Zealand, Australia And America, and friends and family all over the world: including our friends and family in Haiti. The most important part of our work is what we are able to give back to Haiti. Without Haiti there would be no Haitian Vodou, we would not have the beauty and power of the asson, nor would we have the lwa. Haiti can never be forgotten as it is the fundamental aspect of what Vodou is.
Hounfo Racine Deesse Dereyale are proud of our Haitian roots and our New Zealand heritage. We have forged an identity that is unique, strong, and beautiful.