Bylaws of NYCWFT

Wiccan Family Temple By Laws

Establishment, Purpose, Ownership & History

The name of the corporation is The New York City Wiccan Family Temple (Hereinafter referred to as “WFT”, “the Temple”, “Wiccan Family Temple” or “NYCWFT”). Governed by the Board of Trustees (Hereinafter referred to as the “Board of Council”). And WFT Academy of Pagan Studies (Hereinafter referred to as the “WFTAPS” or “The Academy”)

FOUNDERS STATEMENT: Brief History: Since 1994 Starr RavenHawk has been offering events and classes contributing her time, effort, knowledge and monies to the NYC Pagan community at large.

In 2006 both Starr RavenHawk and Luna Rojas became the Founders of The NYC Wiccan Family Temple, they are now known as our Elder High Priestesses. As the Founders, Reverend Starr RavenHawk Elder HPs, and Reverend Luna Rojas Elder HPs shall have the authority to dissolve the Wiccan Family Temple at any time. In the event of the dissolution of the Wiccan Family Temple, these bylaws shall become null and void, and no member of the Wiccan Family Temple, with the exception of the Founders, shall use the name “The NYC Wiccan Family Temple” in connection with any other Wiccan, Witch, Wiccan, Pagan organization without consent of its’ Founders. As the Founding Elders they have the last word in all issues.

Starr and Luna also founded the first Witch School in New York City, The WFT Academy of Pagan Studies (WFTAPS). Forging forward with a few amazing members dedicating themselves to continue offering classes and events in service of The Goddess and The Gods.: Starr can no longer afford to personally financially fund classes and events and has since been charging small fees to help defray some of the costs. So it is now up to all of us as members in the community to step up and assist in any way we can help, by donating time, goods, ideas, knowledge and funds.

Many of you have given of your time, knowledge, efforts, monies or helping us promote our different events, classes etc., over the years for this, For this WE WISH TO SAY THANK YOU. You are our heroes.

Statement Of Purpose

A. Our Purposes are to:

  1. Create a safe environment that invites participants to ask profound questions and to reflect deeply on their purpose in life and their offering to the world. To foster the evolution of the Witch spirit through the study and practice of the Craft of the Wise.
  2. Live in a manner, which honors the Lady and the Lord, honor every living thing on this Earth, honor the seasons as the Wheel of the Year turns and live our lives as respectful to each other as our hearts shall let us. To assist practitioners in achieving a spiritual balance that brings them into true harmony with the Gods and Goddesses
  3. Explore and practice Wicca, WitchCraft and Pagan beliefs and traditions, which includes practicing being a Witch, Wiccan and mastering WitchCrafting on a daily basis.
  4. Support one another within the WFT Community in our healing, growth, and aspirations.
  5. Hold rituals on the Sabbats and Esbats and other special occasions, in order to celebrate the seasons, recognize rites of passage, and honor the Lady and Lord.
  6. Honor the earth and all her creatures as sacred, and work to heal and protect the environment and our animal brothers and sisters, within our community, throughout our nation and across our world. We consider the Earth to be a living being and we acknowledge the intrinsic value of all Nature. We pledge to live responsibly on our planet and encourage sustainable environmental practices that support the web of life.
  7. Teach Wicca, WitchCraft and other earth based theology and traditional skills to Potentials and Dedicants, on kindred spiritual paths.
  8. Where appropriate, to educate the general public about Wicca. To reach out and educate the non-Witch, Wiccan, Pagan population in understanding that we are a positive, reputable and life-affirming religious and lifestyle alternative. We will work with the media to educate the public about Wicca, Wiccan, WitchCraft, Paganism in its’ many spiritual paths. We support all Pagan type and Pantheist religious rights.
  9. Help us in manifesting the means to build, buy or rent a physical Temple space large enough for our needs for indoor and outdoor usage in Manhattan. With this in mind strongly pursuing fundraising ideas, like festivals, donations, investors towards and dedicating funds towards that goal.
  10. Promote, encourage, foster and engage in, by all proper and legitimate means, the dissemination of religious teaching and instruction for the support of public worship of The Wiccan Family Temple tradition.
  11. Support, research, teach, celebrate and observe WFT’s religious tradition, WFT’s practices, beliefs and values relevant to Wicca, WitchCraft and Paganism in its entirety.
  12. Provide a forum for activities that foster, encourage and promote Wicca, WitchCraft and Pagan practices, with observances of the Esbats and Sabbats and its beliefs thereof.
  13. Publicize, publish, teach, research and explore the religious traditions, practices, beliefs and values of Wicca, WitchCraft and Paganism. Other earth based theology and traditional skills to Potentials and Dedicants, on kindred spiritual paths.
  14. Create, establish, modify or dissolve branches; schools, religious orders, libraries, sororities and fraternities, research and experimental organizations, and other subsidiary organizations as the Board of Council (Board of Trustees) may direct.
  15. Authorize, bestow, convey, grant or issue certificates, memberships, ordinations, or to do otherwise, as the Board of Council (Board of Trustees) may direct.
  16. To establish and maintain schools and publications.
  17. To prepare women and men at THE NEW YORK CITY WICCAN FAMILY TEMPLE to become High Priestesses or High Priests, Licensed ordained Reverends and religious counselors to and confer degrees in religious and related subjects.
  18. To confer on these State licensed ordained High Priestess and High Priest, the authority to unite in marriage (handfastings), bury the dead, dedicate, and to perform every lawful temple function to create funds, and to care for those in need (the hungry).
  19. To initiate an outreach program to service the pagan and general community.
  20. To visit pagans or anyone who so wishes us to in hospitals, nursing homes, shelters, prisons and various other institutions.
  21. To ordain High Priestess and High Priest and other Officers within the ordinances of the Temple.
  22. To broadcast to the public of our religious services through the medium of radio, television and in any manner possible in order to educate the general public and reach those interested.
  23. To establish, maintain and operate Day Care Centers, Orphanages, Homes for the Aged and all other facilities necessary to aid the pagan and general public.
  24. To acquire, maintain, refresh and improve real property to be used as a campground for camp meeting, festivities and such purposes.
  25. To buy, vacant land or building, alter, develop, build or repair it for the use of the corporation, and to dispose of it when no longer needed.
  26. The NEW YORK CITY WICCAN FAMILY TEMPLE shall be empowered to establish extension temples and receive those other temples into our fellowship in New York City.
  27. Create a safe environment that invites participants to ask profound questions and to reflect deeply on their purpose in life and their offering to the world. To foster the evolution of the Witch spirit through the study and practice of the Craft of the Wise.
  28. To achieve for Witches, Wiccans and Pagans the same rights and freedom enjoyed by other more mainstream religions.
B. Educational Philosophy
  1. The greatest opportunity for learning and growth occurs in a safe environment that encourages us to engage in honest self-reflection, and be open to moving beyond our current interpretations of reality.
  2. Encouraging the unique spirit in each of us to aspire to grow into a healthy integration of body, heart, mind and spirit based on direct experience and understanding rather than simply history, conventional interpretation, or belief.

C. Guiding Principles

The following are principles that we aspire to live and practice in our individual lives and in the collective life of our community.

♦To bring increasing awareness to our interior and exterior lives.

♦To develop a personal practice that fosters inner peace

♦To see every experience in life as an opportunity to grow

♦To take responsibility for our intentions, thoughts, feelings, and actions

♦To see our outer life in the world as a reflection of our inner state and experience

♦To be aware of the quality of our energy and its effect on those around us

♦To be willing to explore our cultural norms, family patterns, personal values and defensive routines as part of our

commitment to our own development and our capacity to relate to others in an unbiased and open way

♦To seek the highest good in every relationship and situation

♦To recognize that we all have blind spots, and that our interactions with others help us recognize what they are

♦To value each other, blind spots and all

D: Our Community

The People Who Make Our Experience What It Is

Being part of a community is an essential component of the learning experience at The Wiccan Family Temple. Extraordinary things happen when you bring a diverse group of people together where deep spiritual friendships begin to form. We’ve often found that our sense of difference becomes less significant as we recognize that the bond that unites us is far more powerful than any feelings or ideas that keep us apart. We learn how to live more skillfully in the world and form friendships and extended family that can last a lifetime.

E:Commitment: All members of the Wiccan Family Temple must have fully committed themselves to this purpose in their beliefs, their activities, and their lives.

F:Traditions: Ours is a mixture of many traditions combined eclectically, symbiotic of Wicca as a religion, to which we are monotheistic with polytheistic tendencies: Faery, Celtic, Green, Egyptian, African, Caribbean, Native American, Kitchen, etc. making up what we fondly call the Wiccan Family Tradition.

Our Articles of Faith

1. The members of The New York City Wiccan Family Temple shall be known as Witch, Wiccan, Pagans, the followers of the Old Religions, Craft of the Wise and who accept, “An it harm none, do as ye will”, as their highest ideal.

2. We are a community made up of a myriad of Witches, Wiccans, Pagans, nature-based religions. We advocate the tolerance of other faiths. Having a physical Temple space gives us a place to worship, lends credibility to our religion and begins the process of reclaiming them. It is our hope that the firmness of our convictions will be our greatest gift to future generations. The Wiccan Family Temple, by its very nature, is meant to be a place of worship, peace, and healing.

3. It is our belief that “An it harm none, do as ye will” shall constitute a policy within the Temple as karmic law, that is followed by many religions under many other names. Harming none shall be considered as, but not limited to; physical, emotional, mental, or spiritual actions taken against another person(s) or oneself, with the intention to cause injury (with the exception of self defense); and this includes, but is not limited to physical injury, lying, performance of spells or magickal rites specifically against another person(s), group, being(s) or property. This can also be defined as:

i. Harm: Shall be defined as interfering with another’s free will, lessening someone’s freedom of choice, causing unnecessary injury, damaging someone physically, mentally, emotionally or spiritually, or wantonly destroying something.

ii. None: Shall be defined as “no one”, including yourself and may also extend to other beings, the public, or property.

iii. Will: Shall be defined as intention, purpose and focus of action.

4.A Witch, Wiccan, Pagan respects the forces within her/himself that make life possible in order to live wisely without harm to others and in harmony with nature.

5.We practice rites to attune ourselves with the natural rhythms of life forces marked by, but not limited to, the phases of the moon, seasonal quarters and cross quarters

6.We recognize that our knowledge gives us a unique responsibility for our environment. We seek to live in harmony with nature, in ecological balance offering fulfillment to life and consciousness with an evolutionary concept.

7.We conceive of the Creative Power in the universe as manifesting as masculine and feminine, and that this same Creative Power lies in all people and functions through the interaction of the masculine and feminine. We value neither above the other, knowing each to be supportive to the other.

8.We see religion, magick and wisdom in living as being united in the way one views the world and lives within it.

9.We acknowledge the need for respect for others, their beliefs, and ways of worship. We recognize that the quality of each individual’s religious experience may differ; and therefore, each individual’s experience has value. Thus courtesy, respect and tolerance is expected.

Administration and Operation

  1. The Board of Council shall oversee the running operation of the Temple and its By Laws. The Board will consist of 5 to 9 members. Consisting of: The 2 Founding Elders – The President and The Vice President, The Scribe, The Money Witch, The Watcher/Gatekeeper, The Merchant, and other Offices as needed chosen or voted on from 3rd Degree Students and above. The Board of Council will hire/fire all teachers and staff and utilize everyone’s individual talents, strengths, skills, wisely in what they can offer the Temple. This will work well if we allow each of us to lead in the areas we are strongest. As long as each person places the needs of the Temple first.

THE PARTS OF THE BYLAWS WRITTEN HERE ARE NOT IN ITS ENTIRETY……

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