November 10, 2017 revision
ARTICLE ONE: Name
The name of this religious organization shall be Circle Sanctuary, Incorporated. It may be referred to as Circle Sanctuary or as Circle, and for purposes of the Constitution may be referred to as the Church.
ARTICLE TWO: Nature
Circle Sanctuary, Inc. shall be a non-profit religious organization, and shall be a Church of Nature Spirituality.
ARTICLE THREE: Purpose
The purpose of Circle Sanctuary, Inc. shall be as follows:
- To honor and worship the Divine in its aspects of Goddess, God, and other deities and spirits.
- To serve Nature Spirituality people, including those of Pantheistic, Ecospiritual, Wiccan, Druid, Pagan, Earth-centered, and other Nature-centered spiritual paths by providing opportunities for worship and fellowship.
- To serve the Divine through Nature preservation efforts and by fostering community through celebrations, ceremonies, education, outreach and other ministries.
- To hold regular worship services and observe the seasonal religious festivals and full moons, in accordance with our traditions.
- To train and ordain Ministers, and empower them to serve Pagans and those of Nature-centered spiritual paths in their home communities, as well as in their support of the work of Circle Sanctuary.
- To develop, restore and maintain a sacred Nature Preserve.
- To maintain a Church Cemetery on our premises.
- To publish and distribute religious and spiritual materials including literature, artwork, music, meditations, podcasts, videos, social media pages, websites, and other resources which promote spiritual attunement, awakening and growth.
- To promote communication among individuals and groups practicing Pagan and related Nature religions, and to serve as a resource center and a source of counsel and advice.
- To promote respect and understanding of Nature, and to teach others to walk in harmony with Nature through religious experience, educational study and scientific research.
- To support Church members and others through ritual, meditation, counseling, spiritual healing and fellowship, and to promote awakening and growth of spiritual consciousness.
- To further the cause of religious freedom by providing advice and counsel to individuals and organizations who, in the course of exercising their rights as Pagans and Nature spirituality practitioners, believe their rights to be impaired.
- To exercise any powers and rights to which an establishment of a Church is entitled, including:
- To accept absolutely or in trust for any of the purposes enumerated above any gift, grant, or device of real or personal property.
- To make distributions to organizations that qualify as exempt organizations under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, or the corresponding provision of any future code.
- To carry on all other such activities not limited by Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, or the corresponding provision of any future code.
ARTICLE FOUR: Address
The church office and principal meeting place is located at:
5354 Meadowvale Road
Barneveld, WI 53507
The church mailing address is:
PO Box 9
Barneveld, WI 53507
ARTICLE FIVE: Government
The manner of the government of Circle Sanctuary, Inc. shall be set forth in the bylaws.
The Church is subject to the control of no other ecclesiastical body, but it acknowledges and sustains the obligations and privileges of mutual counsel, fellowship, sympathy, advice, and cooperation that are common among churches of the same or similarly-aligned religions.
ARTICLE SIX: Denominational Affiliation
Circle Sanctuary, Inc. is a church of Nature Spirituality. Its particular tradition, Circle Craft, is drawn from contemporary Pagan traditions including Wicca, Naturalistic Paganism, Universalist Ecospirituality and other cultural and religious threads as our leadership and community evolve.
The Church shall be free to affiliate with other non-profit religious organizations that work toward common goals, so long as the Church can continue to maintain its own governance and identity.
ARTICLE SEVEN: Period of Duration
Circle Sanctuary, Inc. shall be PERPETUAL from the date of its incorporation, October 27, 1978, forward until such time as its Board of Directors deem it necessary to disband according to the manner stated in the Bylaws.
ARTICLE EIGHT: Finances and Compliance with Tax-Exempt, Non-Profit Status
Circle Sanctuary, Inc. shall be a non-stock corporation. No dividends or pecuniary profits shall be declared or paid to members thereof. The Church is organized exclusively for religious and charitable purposes within the meaning of Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, or the corresponding section of any future federal tax code.
No part of the earnings of Circle Sanctuary, Inc. shall inure to the benefit of, or be distributed to, its Members, Officers, Directors, Ministers, or any other private person, except that the Church shall be authorized and empowered to pay reasonable compensation for services rendered, and to make payments and distributions in furtherance of the purposes set forth in Article Three.
No substantial part of the activities of the Church shall be to carry on propaganda or otherwise to attempt to influence legislation, and the Church shall not aid any political campaign on behalf of or in opposition to any candidate for public office.
Notwithstanding any other provision of these Articles, the Church shall not carry on any other activities not permitted to be carried out by a corporation exempt from Federal income tax under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.
ARTICLE NINE: Disposal of Church Assets in Event of Dissolution
Should the Board of Directors decide to disband Circle Sanctuary, Inc. in the manner set forth in the Bylaws, the Board of Directors shall, after paying or making provisions for the payment of all the liabilities of the Church, dispose of all the assets of the Church exclusively for the purposes of the Church in such a manner, or to such organizations organized exclusively for charitable, educational, religious, or scientific purposes as shall at that time qualify as an exempt organization under Section 501(c)(3) or the Internal Revenue Code as the Board of Directors shall determine.
Any assets not so disposed of shall be disposed of by the Court of Common Pleas of the county in which the principal office of the Church is located at the time of dissolution, exclusively for such purposes or to such organizations as said Court shall determine, which are organized and operated exclusively for such purposes.
ARTICLE TEN: Membership
All policies concerning membership shall be governed by membership policies separate from the Constitution and Bylaws.
ARTICLE ELEVEN: Directors
The number of Directors comprising the Board shall be at least three and no more than thirteen. The manner in which the Directors shall be appointed and discharged shall be set forth in the Church Bylaws.
ARTICLE TWELVE: Officers
The Officers of the Church shall be: President, Vice-President, Secretary, and Treasurer. Other offices and Officers may be established and appointed by the Board of Directors of the Church at an annual meeting or at a special meeting called for this purpose.
The duties of the Officers and the manner by which the Officers shall be elected and discharged shall be set forth in the Bylaws.
ARTICLE THIRTEEN: Amendments
These Articles may be amended in the manner provided by the Bylaws and by state Statute at the time of amendment.