Silver Fox Grove did a founding rite at Yule 1997. We haven't adapted it yet for bringing in new members, but I thought I'd share it anyway. So, here's what we did, in a nutshell... Each of us brought a stone to be given to the grove as a symbol of ourselves. Anyone who chooses later to leave the grove will get this back. (Our first true grove relic is a ceramic circle of friends that has a bowl in the center of it. We plan to place these stones in it at every rite we do together as a symbol of our community, including those who may not be present).
Each of us invited our own patron deity(ies) to witness our joining. This was really interesting. We asked our guests to honor the tradition that all who chose to accept our hospitality must leave their animosity (or at least their weapons :) at the door, so to speak. We managed with Thor and Loki, Brigid and the Morrigan, as well as additional members of about four pantheons, all present with no disasters. It was very crowded, though :D
We came prepared to tell who we are, what name we will be known by in the grove, and how we arrived at this point in our path. After asking a little divine help from Forseti, my own patron and SFG's god of community, I spoke these words:
We stand as a community in the sight of our Kindred and interweave our lives as family, as friends, and as Folk. Hear our oaths! We shall call upon each other in times of need, for a family takes care of its own. We shall share our resources that all may flourish and grow. We shall work together to maintain a living, dynamic community. For as long as we call ourselves members of Silver Fox Grove, so be it!
All of us repeated: So be it!
We asked Forseti to bless the chalice of red wine and the bread one of our members made for the occassion, then we passed the chalice and toasted our patrons and matrons, some of us explaining a bit about how we formed those relationships and how we experience them.
Each new member has to have a sponsor from the membership. This is an ongoing relationship of guidance and support that goes far beyond simply vouching for the individual to the community. Even the SD has a sponsor :). At this point, we exchaged small gifts between sponsor and ...um... well we don't have a good word yet for the person being sponsored. We jokingly started to call them "spawn", much to the dismay of some of our members :), and it sort of stuck. Any better ideas are mightily welcome!
We made our membership tokens a bit later at an activity meeting, but in the future, membership tokens will be made by the sponsor and given to the new member at the welcoming rite.
I like the idea that others here have used of the commitments made to the new member by the community. It wouldn't really have made sense in the founding rite, but it will be great for future welcomings.