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Coming-of-age ceremonies are held when a child or youth becomes recognized as an adult for the first time.
The Rites of Passage Institute of Cleveland, OH notes that: "The final entrance into adulthood has been provided from time immemorial by the 'coming of age' ceremony.
One Heathen website describes a coming of age ceremony, which is typically performed on the child's birthday or on a seasonal celebration.
It may involve posing a riddle, listing the child's talents, optionally choosing a new name, receiving a symbol of adulthood, welcoming the child as a new adult into the Kindred (congregation), and a giving of gifts.
It was only decriminalized in 1978 when the American Indian Religious Freedom Act was signed into law.
The ritual "..intended to imbue the girls with the spirit and characteristics of White Painted Woman, the Apache culture's first woman - also called Esdzanadehe or Changing Woman.
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Like the other major life chronicle ceremonies accompanying birth, marriage and death, the coming of age ceremony located the individual anew within the surrounding community and indeed with the universe as a whole.