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Author Topic: My Own Beach Community?  (Read 2368 times)

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Rev Beach Bum

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My Own Beach Community?
« on: June 01, 2018, 01:06:47 PM »
No, dudes, I'm not talking about Malibu.
Over the years I've seen general conversation crop up here and there about what a Dudeist church would look like. Comments ranged from "Churches? We don't need no stinkin' churches, dude!" to probably building a Lebowski themed bar or bowling alley.

Then it usually ends there and the Google thing hasn't churned up any relevant links.
Well, dudes, a few strands started flowing through my head and I started wondering the same thing. Given that we don't have a codified set of beliefs it'd be hard to hold routine masses like they do at Christian churches and Jewish synagogues and temples.

But one of the requirements of a church, under the law, is to have a regular meeting place. But it doesn't say what we have to meet about. These could be biweekly philosophy discussions as long as they are scheduled in advance on a recurring timetable (i.e. Every other Wednesday at 1900 hours).

Since we are ordained and can perform marriage ceremonies we could use the facility for weddings, hold memorial services, and so on.
Now I wouldn't recommend doing funerals if there's a body involved due to very strict regulations about storing them. Too much red tape. But if someone was cremated, or simply celebrating the life of a loved one that passed on years before, that'd be cool.

But when we're not marrying or memorializing, or even holding a regularly scheduled meeting, we could open it up as a community gathering place.
Been out on the beach and need to take a break but don't want to go browsing through a store? Come on in and take a load off. Just no pissing on the rugs, man. I might even offer you a good sarsaparilla if I have any.
Need a place to hold your book club and your house is a wreck? The door's open!

But here's where things might get tricky.

What is the official stance on this from the Church of the Latter-Day Dude? Could I hang a neon sign of the Dudeist fish above the entry? Could I decorate the interior with Dudeist symbolism? Could I call it a Dudeist chapel?

I know that this is dealing with intellectual property and I want to make sure I'm in the clear before going forward with any plans.

After all, the Dude abides, man.

Rev Beach Bum

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Re: My Own Beach Community?
« Reply #1 on: June 01, 2018, 10:03:21 PM »
I moved it to general discussion

Masked Dude

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Re: My Own Beach Community?
« Reply #2 on: June 01, 2018, 10:35:58 PM »
Actually you don't need an established place of worship, or at least according to the USA Internal Revenue Service. Yes, it's listed, but there's a long list of things needed. They use a combination instead of using it as hard & fast rules.

I've thought about having a little Dudeist shack here. I'd have to ask the big man about that. I figure we'd need a rug to tie the room together, good windows, and... Well, not much fancy stuff. I envision it as a simple little place. Maybe beanbags. A stereo. TV with a DVD player.
* Carpe diem all over the damn place *
Abide like the Dude when you can
Yell like Walter when you must
Be like Donny when you are

Rev Beach Bum

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Re: My Own Beach Community?
« Reply #3 on: June 02, 2018, 12:16:52 PM »
I'd like to know what you know, Masked Dude. You seem to know more about this than I do. Then again I'm what you might call a neophyte in this area.
Or an uneducated dumbass. I'm cool with either.

Specifically, I'm interested in whether or not the CLDD has a group ruling on their 501(c)(3) exemption and allows for the existence of, like, well... branches or denominations of Dudeism.

If they do then most of the work I'd need to do would already be done.

I could raise the money needed online through YouCaring dot com (0% platform fees as opposed to upwards of 6% on GoFundMe) to pay for the building of my chapel.

And it'd be nothing fancy. A small building. About 1500 square feet. Furnish it with some sofas from IKEA to keep costs under control. Down the center aisle instead of "red carpet" I'd use the Dude's rug (found them online for like $25 a piece), and on one wall maybe hang a picture of the Dude smiling with the Dudeist yin yang symbol flanking him. Sort of like an inverted Mickey Mouse symbol. After all I'd like to build this in St. Petersburg, FL. I've got some compeers down that way that say this could be a really popular thing.

I guess I just need to get ahold of the powers that be around this place but I don't know how easy they are to reach.

Rev Dave Man

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Re: My Own Beach Community?
« Reply #4 on: June 13, 2018, 12:08:34 PM »
That's interesting man, that's fucking interesting.  Keep me posted on how the whole thing shakes out for you.  I've often considered that myself, especially once I started officiating weddings.  It sounds to me like a righteous thing and I'd love to see it come to fruition.
I'm calmer than you are

BikerDude

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Re: My Own Beach Community?
« Reply #5 on: June 14, 2018, 06:42:30 AM »
Who gonna mow the lawn?

Out here we are all his children

Rev Beach Bum

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Re: My Own Beach Community?
« Reply #6 on: June 19, 2018, 12:03:25 PM »
That's interesting man, that's fucking interesting.  Keep me posted on how the whole thing shakes out for you.  I've often considered that myself, especially once I started officiating weddings.  It sounds to me like a righteous thing and I'd love to see it come to fruition.

I was able to get ahold of the Dudely Lama a while back. Apparently it took longer than expected because my spam filter thought a personal correspondence I had sent out was junk mail.

The long and short of it goes like this.

The CLDD is incorporated as a LLC. A business in other words; so there's no tax exemption that we can jump on under their flag.

However, if I'm reading the internal revenue code correctly any businesses incorporated as a religious organization are granted tax exempt status perfunctorily without having to file for 501(c)(3) status. I'll need to consult with a tax attorney to see if my reading of the code is correct but I believe it is.

I was told by the Dudely Lama that we are free to use the name Dudeism but to add something to the name to make it clear that we are separate entities. So no calling it Church of the Latter-Day Dude but Dudeism of Springfield is perfectly acceptable.
Personally I'm thinking of going with Temple of Dude (a play on temple of doom) for an official name or possibly Rev. Beach Bum's Dudeist Chapel.

Symbols and iconography are fair game as long as we don't alter them or use them in a derogatory manner.

But the biggest thing, and there's probably solid legal reasoning for this, is that we cannot personally ordain new members. All ordinations must go through the Dudeism website. And that's something that's easy to abide by. If we have a computer and printer setup we can let them use it to get ordained through the CLDD as long as they understand the distinction between us and the Church itself.
So they would be ministers of Dudeism and not our own little denomination.

As for who would mow the lawn? Grass doesn't grow in a parking lot, BikerDude. :)

~Rev. Beach Bum

BikerDude

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Re: My Own Beach Community?
« Reply #7 on: June 19, 2018, 02:27:44 PM »
That's interesting man, that's fucking interesting.  Keep me posted on how the whole thing shakes out for you.  I've often considered that myself, especially once I started officiating weddings.  It sounds to me like a righteous thing and I'd love to see it come to fruition.

I was able to get ahold of the Dudely Lama a while back. Apparently it took longer than expected because my spam filter thought a personal correspondence I had sent out was junk mail.

The long and short of it goes like this.

The CLDD is incorporated as a LLC. A business in other words; so there's no tax exemption that we can jump on under their flag.

However, if I'm reading the internal revenue code correctly any businesses incorporated as a religious organization are granted tax exempt status perfunctorily without having to file for 501(c)(3) status. I'll need to consult with a tax attorney to see if my reading of the code is correct but I believe it is.

I was told by the Dudely Lama that we are free to use the name Dudeism but to add something to the name to make it clear that we are separate entities. So no calling it Church of the Latter-Day Dude but Dudeism of Springfield is perfectly acceptable.
Personally I'm thinking of going with Temple of Dude (a play on temple of doom) for an official name or possibly Rev. Beach Bum's Dudeist Chapel.

Symbols and iconography are fair game as long as we don't alter them or use them in a derogatory manner.

But the biggest thing, and there's probably solid legal reasoning for this, is that we cannot personally ordain new members. All ordinations must go through the Dudeism website. And that's something that's easy to abide by. If we have a computer and printer setup we can let them use it to get ordained through the CLDD as long as they understand the distinction between us and the Church itself.
So they would be ministers of Dudeism and not our own little denomination.

As for who would mow the lawn? Grass doesn't grow in a parking lot, BikerDude. :)

~Rev. Beach Bum

I think you are spinning your wheels as far as the tex exempt thing but hey have at it.
The IRS has a "webinar" for churches and religious organizations.
https://www.irsvideos.gov/ChurchesReligiousOrganizations/
 

Out here we are all his children

Masked Dude

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Re: My Own Beach Community?
« Reply #8 on: June 19, 2018, 05:03:32 PM »
I'd like to know what you know, Masked Dude. You seem to know more about this than I do. Then again I'm what you might call a neophyte in this area.
Or an uneducated dumbass. I'm cool with either.

We've all stumbled into the movie late, haven't we? To be honest, I have this weird thing in my head where I sometimes love to research things. When I studied law, it served me well. It's hard to explain, but you can learn how to research things and figure out what to research next. You research one thing, "link" it to what you  need next, research that, and so on. I'm not explaining it well, I know.
* Carpe diem all over the damn place *
Abide like the Dude when you can
Yell like Walter when you must
Be like Donny when you are

Rev Beach Bum

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Re: My Own Beach Community?
« Reply #9 on: June 20, 2018, 03:34:27 AM »
I'll take a gander at that video tomorrow. But from what I'm reading on their website I think I'm in the right direction. 
It won't let me post external links so I'm having to find a workaround for that.

[inactive]https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/p1828.pdf[/inactive]

[inactive]https://www.irs.gov/charities-non-profits/churches-religious-organizations[/inactive]

Masked Dude

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Re: My Own Beach Community?
« Reply #10 on: June 21, 2018, 03:06:28 PM »
First things first: I'm not a lawyer. Can't and won't answer questions for anyone's specific case. What I'm saying is my interpretation. If you have any questions, find an attorney. They'll know for sure and will help you avoid trouble. I'm not liable if anyone messes up. Don't follow my advice.

From what I can tell, you don't necessarily need to fill out Form 1023 for an official letter of tax exempt status as a church. While churches fall under 501(c)(3) charities, churches are special cases. If you plan on taking donations, an official letter gives donors and leaders confidence that their donations are in fact tax deductible. If you're starting a religious organization, you have to file. And that's about $600 for that, and you need current year and two years' financial statements. (Prior years if you've been around 3 years, or planned budget for upcoming years.) So you can be a tax-exempt church without the official letter.

The 14 criteria to be a church do not all have to be met to be considered a church. Each is decided on a case-by-case basis. So how do you avoid legal trouble and excise & other taxes? Well, reading over publication 1828 and skimming 557 and watching the nice lady's video, it's not that hard. Basically, avoid lobbying and political interference. How? Never make an official statement for or against a political candidate, and don't serve as a speaker for a candidate, and don't invite candidates over to your church or functions. Avoid inurement; don't use your church to buy or sell things you'll use personally. Don't funnel money and assets to yourself. Buy and sell everything at fair market value. Don't pay anyone more than a usual fee and be careful hiring friends and family. Be aware of what's UBIT (unrelated business income), like selling merchandise (shirts, etc.), charging for parking spaces, and so on. You gotta pay taxes on that. Just not selling donated items; that's exempt.

Basically, don't be a dick. Don't use the church as a way to make money. Don't pay yourself too much. Get a basic book on accounting, like a Dummies guide, keep track of all money in and out. Look at samples of articles of incorporation.

It's not hard, it's just a lot of tiny things.
* Carpe diem all over the damn place *
Abide like the Dude when you can
Yell like Walter when you must
Be like Donny when you are

DigitalBuddha

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Re: My Own Beach Community?
« Reply #11 on: July 03, 2018, 12:19:32 AM »
Some good advice to be sure, MD, you have expressed much dudely wisdom; but Are you employed, sir? ;)
If they pee on your rug...



"I could be just sitting at home with pee stains on my rug."

Masked Dude

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Re: My Own Beach Community?
« Reply #12 on: July 03, 2018, 01:24:23 AM »
Some good advice to be sure, MD, you have expressed much dudely wisdom; but Are you employed, sir? ;)
Unfortunately I am, sir!  :D
* Carpe diem all over the damn place *
Abide like the Dude when you can
Yell like Walter when you must
Be like Donny when you are

DigitalBuddha

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Re: My Own Beach Community?
« Reply #13 on: July 03, 2018, 03:26:44 PM »
Some good advice to be sure, MD, you have expressed much dudely wisdom; but Are you employed, sir? ;)
Unfortunately I am, sir!  :D

That's a bummer, man, but we all need a cash machine.
If they pee on your rug...



"I could be just sitting at home with pee stains on my rug."

BikerDude

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Re: My Own Beach Community?
« Reply #14 on: July 05, 2018, 06:31:48 AM »
Don't be fatuous. 
Little matter to us how a  person chooses to pursue a career.

Out here we are all his children

 

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