NROOGD is a loose organization of covens and unassociated elders. A person seeking training in the tradition will contact a working coven which is accepting applicants, or in rare cases, an elder who is willing to take the time and energy to train.
The seeker will go through three phases in training: the dedicant, the initiate, and the elder. The dedicant has chosen to apply their training in a serious manner and undertakes basic training in religion, ethics, morals, behavior, tradition history, and.., of course, practice.
When the elder in charge of training determines that the individual has shown sufficient dedication to the path, and that the individual will work well within the coven structure; and the dedicant has decided that they wish to proceed on this path, the dedicant is offered initiation.
At a minimum the initiate will continue to study the same topics for at least a year and a day, as well as new topics such as magic and magical ethics as he or she works in various roles in the Esbats and circle of Sabbats.
When the elder in charge of training, in conjunction with other elders in the community, decides that the initiate has been as fully trained as that Elder is capable of, and that the initiate can pass on the tradition complete and whole without the aid of others, that initiate is offered elevation to Elder status.
After some years of further study and practice the Elder may decide that he or she is prepared to take the garter. This however is a personal choice which need not involve other elders unless the ceremony requires it. This is a choice that the Elder taking the garter makes and which includes writing his or her own ritual.
Once a person has achieved Elder status, it is not necessary to leave the coven and begin a new coven. In fact many choose to stay with the coven in which they were trained and elevated, often working within that group for years. Sometimes when a coven dissolves elders will choose not to form or join another group. This leaves our tradition with a large number of unassociated elders. These unassociated elders are always available for assistance in training, initiations, and elevations, and participation at public sabbats.
Twice a year in the Bay Area an ingathering is held for all those belonging to the order. Here we decide who will have the responsibility for the next six sabbats and discuss any other business at hand. These meetings are always run by consensus.
Right now there are a few isolated covens in other parts of the United States; however these areas do not have enough covens to generally call ingathers for themselves. It is, of course hoped that this may change in the future and that other areas will hold ingathers themselves.