Is Paganism and/or Wicca a recognized religion in the US?

Is Paganism and/or Wicca a recognized religion in the US?

Is Paganism and/or Wicca a recognized religion in the US?
I am just wondering.
Links if possible.

  1. GardeniaMar 04, 2011

    Yes it is, not in a state religion way, in a same rights as the other faiths way. Witchvox.com and Wicca timerift are great sites to study.

  2. Labgrrl: An institution?Mar 04, 2011

    No.

    The United States recognizes NO RELIGION. Read the first amendment.

    That being said, Wicca is granted the same rights and privileges as any other faith.

    It is in the US military chaplain’s handbook and Wiccan churches and organizations are recognized as tax exempt.

    As a Wiccan for over 20 years, I am irritated when I see websites claim that the USA “recognizes” Wicca or ANY RELIGION, as there is no government organization in the US that declares religions to be official.

    Wicca is legally protected as a religion, yes.

    It has been *declared* a religion in a court of law, but that’s not government recognition…..

    Court cases:
    http://www.religioustolerance.org/wic_rel.htm

    The concept of government recognition is from places outside the US.

  3. dude IMar 04, 2011

    Recognized by Who? Not hardly is it recognized as a religion. There is no one consistent theme with all the groups listed above. Generally someone wants to start a group and they do and their input of philosophy is injected into the group which is totally different from another group..

  4. shadowcatx2000Mar 04, 2011

    Yes, Wicca has the same ability to claim religious tax exemption and to have representation in the military as any other religion.

  5. NightwindMar 04, 2011

    There is no such thing as a “recognized religion” in the US. If the government started determining real religions from fake religions, that would be counter to the first amendment. However, the US military chaplain’s book had discussed Wiccans since 1975, they will stamp “Wiccan” on your dog tags, and they’ll put a pentagram on your gravestone if you request it. Wiccan and other pagan groups can get 501c3 tax exempt status if they fit the same requirements mainstream religious groups are held to.

  6. WrenMar 04, 2011

    Wicca has the same rights as any other religion in the United States. It is accepted by the military.. able to be tax exempt everything just like any christian, jewish, muslim, or any other religious group in the country.

  7. nyjhMar 04, 2011

    Merry Meet,

    As per Wicca being a recognized religion in the US. I am not interested in semantics, but the fact is Yes Wicca is a recognized religion in the US. As an example, the Sacred Circle of Wiccan Fellowship is a recognized Wiccan Church in the eyes of the governor of NC and CO. In fact we have a letter from the governor’s office giving us official recognition and eligibility of tax exemption. The state of North Carolina‘s Internal Revenue Service has also bestowed a letter giving the SCWF tax exemption. Also the SCWF has a Federal Employer Identification Number that also gives the SCWF Federal Tax Exemption. Also every 2nd Degree or above has the same rights and privileges under Federal and State laws as any Christian, Muslim or any other religion recognized by the government to perform weddings, funerals or even Wiccanings.

    Beware though, many states and courts do not recognize online or mail order ordinations. The reasons are legalities and legitimacy. But then this is a whole other issue to address at a later time.

    I hope that my little blurp has given some valuable insight to those seriously seeking it.

    Blessed Be

    Nyjh

    P.S. The First Amendment to the United States Constitution is part of the United States Bill of Rights that expressly prohibits the United States Congress from making laws “respecting an establishment of religion” or that prohibit the free exercise of religion, laws that infringe the freedom of speech, infringe the freedom of the press, limit the right to peaceably assemble, or limit the right to petition the government for a redress of grievances.

    Although the First Amendment explicitly prohibits only the named rights from being abridged by laws made by the Congress, the Supreme Court has interpreted it as applying more broadly. As the first sentence in the body of the Constitution reserves all legislative authority to the Congress, the courts have held that the First Amendment’s terms also extend to the executive and judicial branches. Additionally, in the 20th century the Supreme Court held that the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment applies the limitations of the First Amendment to each state, including any local government within a state.

    From Wikipedia

  8. maiingan2Mar 04, 2011

    Wicca has legal rights in the US if that’s what you mean. Practitioners do have the right to practice their beliefs just the same as anyone of any other faith, and should without fear of retribution from other people. Unfortunatly, not everyone recognizes this right.

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