P.O. Box 9, Barneveld WI 53507 USA
Circle, also known as Circle Sanctuary, is a non-profit international Nature Spirituality resource center and legally recognized Shamanic Wiccan church. Founded in 1974, Circle helps people from many spiritual orientations connect with each other as well as with the spiritual dimensions of Nature.
Circle Sanctuary is a church rooted in Sacred Land, serving people of Pagan and other Nature-centered spiritual paths. We honor the Divine through nature preservation and fostering Community through celebrations, ceremonies, education, outreach and other ministries.
As a result of our sacred work, our vision is of a sustainable organization with strong connections to our local, national and international community, living in a world where our religious traditions and spiritual diversity are respected and honored, and walking in harmony with each other and the greater Circle of Nature of which we all are part.
Circle operates Circle Network, an international network of Wiccan, Pagan, Goddess Spirituality, Shamanic, and other Nature Spirituality practitioners, groups, and centers. To affiliate, one must have reverence for Nature as a central component of spirituality and have a code of ethics that promotes well being for self, others, and the planet, and is consistent with the Wiccan Rede, "An it harm none, do what you will."
Circle facilitates information exchange, contact connections, and other networking through a variety of Circle Network periodicals and events. The Circle staff also operates a contact service through phone and correspondence.
Within Circle Network, there are several specialty networks. The Pagan Spirit Alliance encourages friendship support among Pagans. The Lady Liberty League focuses on combatting discrimination and on upholding religious freedom for Wiccan, Pagan, and other Nature religions practitioners and groups. The Pagan Academic Network facilitates communication among scholars, students, and professors engaged in Pagan related research and academic publishing.
Education & Public Information
Circle sponsors a variety of workshops, training programs, and other educational events at Circle Sanctuary and at other locations. Workshops are held in connection with festivals and at other times. Special programs in the Summer include work-study internships and spiritual leadership training. In addition, the executive directors travel near and far to do presentations for conferences, festivals, and other events sponsored by colleges, universities, alternative and mainstream churches, holistic health centers, and other organizations.
Circle's networking and education work also has a public information dimension. Circle provides information through the mass media in order to dispel misconceptions and prejudice, improve understanding, and promote tolerance towards Nature Spirituality. Over the years, interviews with Circle staff and volunteers have appeared in local and global press, radio, television, and films. In addition, Circle is active in interfaith, multicultural, and international cooperation endeavors.
Circle is headquartered on a 200-acre sacred Nature preserve which it purchased in 1983. Circle Sanctuary Nature Preserve is located in the rolling hills of southwestern Wisconsin, about an hour's drive west of Madison. It includes forests, meadows, a remnant prairie, streams, springs, ancient sandstone rock outcroppings, Nature trails, and an abundance of wild birds and other wildlife. The preserve also features a variety of ritual sites and meditation places, including a Stone Circle and outdoor shrines.
Circle Sanctuary Nature Preserve is engaged in environmental education, bluebird restoration, woodlands and wetlands conservation, and other Nature preservation endeavors. Several environmental scientists are among the volunteers helping with research and conservation projects at the preserve.
The preserve is open to Circle Network members at a variety of festivals and other events held throughout the year. Some events are also open to the public. Arrangements to visit at these and at other times must be made in advance. Dates of festivals are published on our Events page.
Books, Recordings, & Other Spiritual Resources
Circle makes available to contributors a selection of spiritual books, recordings, sacred herbs, jewelry, and other aids to spiritual practice and development. Circle operates this service to help make Nature Spirituality resources more widely available and to help fund its networking and other work. Information about resources available through Circle are listed in each issue of CIRCLE Magazine.
Circle ministers facilitate spiritual healing work, do counseling, and design and conduct weddings, baby blessings, funerals, and other rites of passages. More information about these services is available upon request.
Circle Magazine: published quarterly in the middle of each season. Networking and education newspaper. News, articles, rituals, illustrations, reviews, invocations, contacts, photos, gathering announcements, and other information contributed by the Circle network throughout the USA and around the world. One year subscription contribution: $19/bulk mail to USA; $25 first class/air to US, Canada, and Mexico; $34/air to Europe; $38 air elsewhere.
Circle Guide to Pagan Groups: updated with each printing. Directory listing more than 700 groups, centers, networks, periodicals, stores, and festivals throughout the USA and elsewhere. Contribution: $18/USA, Canada, and Mexico; $21/elsewhere.
Email Announcement Lists: published occasionally (click here to subscribe). Includes updates on Circle's work as a non-profit center and descriptions of spiritual resources available to contributors to Circle.
Circle sponsors a variety of festivals, retreats, and other events throughout the year. The largest festival is the international Pagan Spirit Gathering which is a weeklong celebration of Summer Solstice. This festival, held in June in southwestern Wisconsin, brings together hundreds of Circle Network members from throughout the USA and elsewhere. It features numerous activities, including rituals, workshops, youth program, bonfires, discussion groups, spiritual leadership training, concerts, bazaar, and more.
Other festivals include Sacred Fire Circles (Memorial Day and Labor Day weekends), Samhain (late October), Yule (mid-December), Imbolc (early February), Welcome Spring (mid-March), Earth Day (late April), Beltane (early May), Green Spirit Gathering (July/August), Fall Equinox (mid-September).
Circle Sanctuary Community
The Circle Sanctuary Community is the spiritual community of women, men, and children who share ritual, ideas, support, and celebration with each other at Circle festivals and other events throughout the year. Most members are from Wisconsin and neighboring states but others are from more distant places. Within the Community is the Volunteers Circle which helps with various aspects of Circle's work.
Circle Statement of Purpose
We encourage the growth and well-being of Nature Spirituality through:
- promoting dialogue, cooperation, and mutually beneficial networking among individuals, groups, and organizations of different paths through Circle Network.
- providing contacts through publications, correspondence, and telephone.
- publishing a quarterly journal, Circle Network News, and other periodicals.
- maintaining Circle Sanctuary land, a spiritual Nature preserve.
- promoting the creation and sharing of rituals, meditations, music, images, and other spiritual artforms.
- providing ministerial services including counseling, healing, and conducting weddings, child blessings, funerals, house blessings, and other rites of passages.
- sponsoring the Pagan Spirit Gathering and other festivals throughout the year.
- sponsoring educational activities, including workshops, talks, leadership training, and youth programs.
- publishing and distributing spiritual books, tapes, and other resources for spiritual development and practice.
- engaging in religious freedom activist work through the Lady Liberty League.
- promoting understanding and tolerance in mainstream society through public education, interfaith networking, and public relations media work.
- engaging in academically sound and publishable research.
- engaging in multicultural exchange and cooperation for planetary wellness.