Ceres is a Roman goddess of cereal crops. She represents the regenerative powers of nature and is identified with the Greek goddess Demeter as well as the Roman earth goddess Tellus.
During a famine in either 499 or 496 BCE, consultation of the Sybilline books recommended the institution of Ceres' cult, together with the two Greek Gods closely associated with the Eleusinian Mysteries (Iacchus and Kore, also known as Proserpina). Thus, on 19 Aprilis 493 BCE (the traditional date of the founding) a temple to Ceres, Liber and Libera was erected on the Aventine.
Ceres has her own priest, the Flamen Cerealis, and her festival is the Cerealia. She is also worshipped on the Sementaivae and the Ambarvalia. A fast in honour of Ceres (most unusual for Romans) was held on October 4. Ceres receives sacrifices to purify the house after a funeral and is occasionally associated with the Underworld.
— Source: Dictionary of Roman Religion, Adkins & Adkins
"The name plebeian aediles may derive from Ceres since aedilis may derive from aedes Cereris, the Temple of Ceres. Sources connecting the aediles with aedes Cereris that the decrees of the Senate be given over to the aediles of the plebs (aediles plebis) in the Temple of Ceres (aedes Cereris)"
"Those who lacked wealth and fled to the asylum of Ceres were given bread"
Lindsay probably refers to the Temple of Ceres as a place of refuge for the plebs and the temple where the distribution of grain or bread took place. In turn the temple might have been the location for the frumentationes.
The goddess Ceres had ties to rituals, the establishment of peace after war, the violations of the sacrosanctitas of the tribunes of the plebs, and the punishment for those who attempted to overthrow the Republic. Some say Ceres favors weddings, because she was the first to wed Jove, and she is in charge of the founding of cities, as Calvus teaches:
"She taught the sacred laws and she joined the loving bodies in weddings and established the great cities" for them also the city-state is enclosed by the furrow of the plow."
The fines levied and collected by the plebeian aediles were often presented to the temple of Ceres: "And likewise games were held and golden paterae placed at the temple of Ceres by the plebeian aediles L. Aelius Paetus and C. Fulvius Curvus with the money from fines that they had collected from those convicted of [illegally] using public pasture:"
" Let Tellus, fertile in crops and herds, present Ceres with a crown of wheat stalks; let the healthy waters and breezes of Juppiter nourish the offspring."
The aediles plebis handled many festivals associated with the goddess and may have occasionally served as priests of Ceres, such as celebrating the lectisternium celebrating the dies natalis of the Temple of Tellus, also the lectisternium of Ceres and Tellus, celebrated at the Temple of Tellus in the distict of Carenae.
To Tellus and Ceres in Carenae. The aediles...also make the lectisternium from the beds.
—All from "The Roman Goddess Ceres" Babette Spaeth, University of Texas Press 1996