Ignite is now officially a 501(c)3 organization and has a non-profit status with the federal government! This is actually retroactive back to our filling date of May 17, 2019.
A 501(c) organization is a nonprofit organization in the federal law of the United States according to 26 U.S.C. § 501 and is one of 29 types of nonprofit organizations exempt from some federal income taxes. 501(c)(3) tax-exemptions apply to entities that are organized and operated exclusively for religious, charitable, scientific, literary, or educational purposes, or for testing for public safety, or to foster national or international amateur sports competition, or for the prevention of cruelty to children or animals. Many states refer to Section 501(c) for definitions of organizations exempt from state taxation as well. 501(c) organizations can receive unlimited contributions from individuals, corporations, and unions. In addition, all contributions count as tax write-offs as charitable donations.
The current structure of Via de Cristo as a whole in the United States is as follows. We have a national committee that provides resources, guidance, and oversees the overall operations, providing some basic continuity throughout the country. This is the National Lutheran Secretariat (NLS for short). The country has about 50 individual organizations called secretariats. These secretariats are not necessarily divided by state. Some are one combined secretariat among several states, while others have several secretariats in one state. Florida, for instance, has six separate secretariats. Minnesota has had the most unique structure. Despite the size of our organization, we have retained one secretariat: with one state council overseeing the state made up of 3 districts: north, south, and metro. The districts report to the state regarding all their activities. There is one treasurer who handles the income and expenses for the state as a whole.
The final step for Ignite to take is to write our by-laws and send them to NLS. Once that is done and approved, we are officially a new VdC Secretariat.
For more information, head over to the New Ignite Info page.