ByLaws of Church of the Spiral Tree

REVISED DECEMBER 9, 2019

nonstock - nonprofit

Corporate Headquarters
P.O. Box 3165
Auburn, AL 36831-3165

PREAMBLE

Purpose:The Church of the Spiral Tree (CST) is a non-profit, volunteer-staffed, ecumenical pagan church, designed to foster and celebrate a sense of community and family among pagans, both locally and in other regions of the country/world. CST celebrates the unique pagan family: parents, children, elders, and extended family. It is an ecumenical church in that it encompasses all traditions, and is non-exclusive. It welcomes all who revere the Earth Mother and who respect themselves and others, regardless of which tradition one is affiliated with.

To the above ends we do hereby adopt and enact the following Articles:

ARTICLE I
NAME

1.1: The name of the Corporation shall be Church of the Spiral Tree, Inc., and is a non-profit 501(c)(3) religious organization, incorporated in the United States under the laws of the State of Alabama.

ARTICLE II
OFFICES

2.1: The principal office of the Church shall be in the state of Alabama, county of Lee. The Church may also have offices at such other places within or without the state of Alabama as the Board of Directors may from time to time determine or the activities of the Church may require.

ARTICLE III
PURPOSE

3.1: The purpose of this Corporation shall be as outlined in the Articles of Incorporation; and specifically the following:
3.1.1: To foster and celebrate a sense of community and family among pagans, both locally and in other regions of the country/world, and to recognize and celebrate the unique pagan family: parents, children, elders, and extended family;
3.1.2: To provide an ecumenical church that welcomes all who revere the Earth Mother and who respect themselves and others, regardless of which tradition one is already affiliated with, recognizing that all paths are one path;
3.1.3: To assist those who are searching for alternatives to presently established religions and institutions; to also assist individuals in the integration of life-affirming values and practices into present religious/spiritual paths; to assist individuals in retaining and enriching past affiliations where desired and rejecting that which is negative or no longer relevant to the individual;
3.1.4: To furnish a central headquarters and establish branch offices (called Churches, Groves, Branches, or Temples) through which seekers may locate and communicate with each other, and to buy, sell, own, hold, mortgage, or otherwise encumber, lease, or otherwise hold and dispose of real and personal property necessary to properly establish, fit up, and maintain such places;
3.1.5: To establish and maintain religious orders, communities, daycare cooperatives, homeschooling cooperatives, schools, colleges, libraries, research facilities, wilderness sanctuaries and retreats, camps, festivals, rites and rituals in accordance with the principles of this Church;
3.1.6: To provide for all possible means for recycling the bodies of deceased members consistent with eco-psychic awareness and personal will;
3.1.7: To make provision to establish and ordain various sacraments of Church of the Spiral Tree;
3.1.8: To receive money, property, and values of every kind heretofore donated, contributed, collected, and held, and to receive, and hold money, property and values of every kind that might be donated, contributed, collected and held, for the benefit of this religious organization;
3.1.9: To work, associate, and affiliate with other similarly oriented individuals, churches, agencies and groups promoting peace, love, joy, freedom, mutual respect and cooperation among peoples, tribal community, planetary stewardship, personal awareness and development, celebration of life, and the recovery of natural wilderness, and to aid and support such people in such efforts as shall be found not to be in conflict with the purposes and principles of this Church; and
3.1.10: To engage in and promote any functions, services and activities deemed appropriate, necessary or expedient for the purposes of the Church by the Board of Directors, its delegated authority, or the directors of the various Subordinate Organizations.

ARTICLE IV
MEMBERSHIP

4.l: Membership. Membership in Church of the Spiral Tree shall be eligible to all who understand the principles of the Church, who have made application, and who have been accepted by the Board of Directors or its delegated authority. The form of application shall be that approved by the Board of Directors or its delegated authority.

ARTICLE V
MINISTERS

5.1: Ministers. Upon application and payment of fees, the Church may ordain any person over the age of 18 as a Minister and issue a Minister's Certificate. Licensed CST Ministers shall be authorized to perform such legal sacraments as weddings, funerals, and baptisms.

5.1.1: Ordination as a minister does not confer "Elder" or High Priest/ess" status.
5.1.2: A Minister may form his/her ministry as a Subordinate Organization subject to the provisions of Article IX.

ARTICLE VI
OFFICERS

6.1: Church of the Spiral Tree shall consist of, at a minimum, a President, a Secretary, and a Treasurer. These officers shall also serve as the Board of Directors of the Corporation, as per Article VII.
6.2: Any of the officers may choose to take on one or more of these specific roles, along with its specific duties, or may appoint another member to do so. These specific roles and duties are outlined below.
6.3: The President shall be the chief executive officer of the Corporation, and shall preside at all meetings of the Board of Directors. The President shall have general charge of the business of the Corporation, and shall execute, with the Secretary, in the name of the Corporation, all deeds, bonds, contracts, and other obligations and instruments authorized by the Board of Directors.

6.3.1: The President shall also have such other powers and shall perform such other duties as may be assigned by the Board of Directors.
6.4: The Secretary shall keep records of all regular and special meetings of the Board of Directors, and forward these records to the members of the Board. The Secretary shall also notify members of the Board of the time, place, and planned agenda of the regular Board meetings.
6.4.1: The Secretary also serves as the correspondent of the Corporation with persons representing the State of Alabama, and files whatever reports and forms may be required by the State on an annual or ongoing basis.
6.4.2: Minutes of Board meetings shall be prepared by the Secretary and distributed to the Board members not more than two weeks after each meeting.
6.5: The Treasurer shall receive and safely keep all funds of the Corporation and deposit same in such bank or banks as may be designated by the Board of Directors. Such funds shall be paid out only on the cheque of the Corporation signed as directed by the Board of Directors. The Treasurer shall also control the keeping of the books and accounts of the Corporation, and is responsible for the filing and payment of any moneys required by the State of Alabama.

ARTICLE VII
BOARD OF DIRECTORS

7.1: Management of the Church shall be vested in a Board of Directors, who shall also serve as officers both for the Board of Directors and for the Church. All members of the Board of Directors must be qualified to perform the duties of their office.

7.1.1: Conflict of interest. No member of the Board shall vote on a matter from which they would derive direct financial gain or loss.
7.2: Any Director, member of a committee or council, or other officer may resign at any time. Such resignation shall be made in writing, and shall take effect at the time specified therein, and if no time be specified, at the time of its receipt by any of the other officers. The acceptance of a resignation shall not be necessary to make it effective.
7.3. If any of the Directors, member of a committee or council, or other officer, fail to perform their duties, including but not limited to: non-communication within a reasonable time via accepted and usual means, or failure to appear without valid reason at two or more board meetings within a year’s time, the remaining members of the Board of Directors may, at any regular meeting of the Board of Directors, or at any special meeting of the Board of Directors, and by unanimous consent, remove said Director/officer from his/her position on the Board of Directors.
7.4: If the office of any Director, member of a committee or council, or other office becomes vacant, the remaining Directors in office, though less than a quorum by a majority vote, may appoint any qualified person to fill such a vacancy, and to hold office for the unexpired term and until their successor shall be duly chosen.
7.5: Directors shall not receive any stated salary for their services as directors or members of committees or councils, but by resolution of the Board a fixed fee and expenses of attendance may be allowed for attendance at each meeting. Nothing herein contained shall be construed to preclude any director from serving the Church in any other capacity as an office, agent, or otherwise, and receiving compensation therefore.
7.6: The powers of the Board of Directors shall be those usually assigned to such Directors. They are subject to limitation or specification at any meeting of the Board. They shall specifically include the following powers:
7.6.1: To call regular or special meetings of the Directors or of the membership, on initiative of the President, or by mutual agreement of two or more of the Directors;
7.6.2: To make rules and regulations not inconsistent with the laws of the State of Alabama or the Bylaws of this Corporation, for the guidance of officers, Directors, and members;
7.6.3: To make rules and regulations for the use and management of all Church property, whether real or personal, and to change such rules and regulations at such time and in such manner as to said Board of Directors, or Directors of Subordinate Organizations, shall seem right and proper;
7.6.4: To issue certificates of Charter to members in other areas when they wish to establish a local Grove, or to establish Subordinate Organizations, upon conditions to be determined by the Board or its delegated authority;
7.6.5: To determine what shall be due and reasonable compensation to be paid any member of the Corporation for services rendered to or for the Corporation, affecting one or more of its purposes; and
7.6.6: To maintain, at the Central Office, confidential files on all members, active and inactive, and such other records as may be deemed necessary adequately to carry out the purposes of the Corporation.
7.7: The Board of Directors shall have full power and authority to borrow money on behalf of the Corporation, including the power and authority to borrow money from any of the members, Directors, or officers of the Corporation, and to otherwise incur indebtedness on behalf of the Corporation, and to authorize the execution of promissory notes, or other evidences of indebtedness of the Corporation, and to agree to pay interest thereon to sell, convey, alienate, transfer, assign, exchange, lease, and otherwise dispose of, mortgage, pledge, hypothecate, and otherwise encumber the property, real or personal, and the franchises of the Corporation to purchase, lease, and otherwise acquire property, real and personal, on behalf of the Corporation; and generally to do and perform, or cause to be done and performed, every act which the Corporation may lawfully do and perform.
7.8: The Board of Directors shall constitute a nominating committee for Directors to serve on the Board.

ARTICLE VIII
MEETINGS

8.1: Board of Directors. Regular meetings of the Board of Directors shall be held at least once per year. Special meetings may be held whenever deemed necessary by the Board of Directors.

8.1.1: Notices. The Secretary of the Corporation shall send notices of regular meetings of the Board of Directors, together with proposed agenda items to members of the Board and any person directly affected by any item two weeks prior to such meetings. Notice of special Board meetings shall be made as early as possible.
8.2: Councils and Committees. Unless otherwise specified elsewhere in these Bylaws, Councils and committees shall meet as often as necessary to carry out the business of that Council or committee.
8.3: A quorum to conduct business at meetings of any Council or committee shall consist of a number to be determined by that particular body.

ARTICLE IX
PROHIBITION OF DIVIDENDS

9.1: No part of the net earnings of the Corporation shall inure to the benefit of, or be distributable, as dividends or in any other manner, to its members, directors, officers or other private persons, except that the Corporation shall be authorized and empowered to pay reasonable compensation for services rendered and to make payments and distributions in furtherance of the purpose set forth in the Articles of Incorporation and in Article III of these Bylaws.
9.2: Further, upon the dissolution of the Corporation, the Board of Directors shall, after paying or making provision for the payment of all of the liabilities of the Corporation, dispose of all of the assets of the Corporation exclusively for the purposes of the Corporation in such manner, or to such organization or organizations organized and operated exclusively for charitable, educational, religious, or scientific purposes as shall at the time qualify as an exempt organization or organizations under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1954 (or the corresponding provisions of any future United States Law) as the Board of Directors shall determine. Any such assets not so disposed of shall be disposed of by the Court of Common Please of the County in which the principal office of the Corporation is then located, exclusively for such purposes or to such organization or organizations, as said Court shall determine, which are organized and operated exclusively for such purposes.

ARTICLE X
FISCAL YEAR

10.1: The fiscal year of the Corporation shall be determined by resolution of the Board of Directors.

ARTICLE XI
EXECUTION OF CORPORATION INSTRUMENTS

11.1: All checks, drafts, or other orders for the payment of money, notes or other evidences of indebtedness issued in the name of the Corporation shall be signed by officer or officers, agent or agents of the Corporation, and in such manner as shall be determined from time to time by resolution of the Board of Directors.

ARTICLE XII
NOTICE AND WAIVER OF NOTICE

12.1: Notice. Whenever any notice is required by these Bylaws to be given, personal notice is not meant unless expressly stated, and any notice so required shall be deemed to be sufficient if given by depositing the same in the United States mail, postage prepaid, addressed to the person entitled thereto at his or her address as it appears on the records of the Corporation, and such notice shall be deemed to have been given on the day of such mailing.
12.2: Waiver of Notice. Whenever any notice whatever is required to be given under the provisions of any law, or under the provisions of the Articles of Incorporation of the Corporation or these Bylaws, a waiver thereof in writing signed by the person or persons entitled to said notice, whether before or after the time stated therein, shall be deemed proper notice.

ARTICLE XIII
AMENDMENTS

13.1: Amendments or changes in these Bylaws may be made by recommendation of the Board of Directors at any annual meeting or any special meeting thereof if notice thereof is contained in the notice of such special meeting, by the affirmative vote of a majority of the members entitled to vote thereat, or by the Board of Directors, at any regular meeting of the Board of Directors, or at any special meeting of the Board of Directors, if notice thereof is contained in the notice of such special meeting.
13.2: The Board shall provide reasonable opportunities for all interested members to propose amendments to the Board for recommendations, and to study recommendations passed by the Board prior to their presentation for approval at the Annual meeting. And no others.