The name of NLI’s blog, And God’s First, is inspired by St. Thomas More, who was convicted of treason and executed by Henry VIII for refusing to take the Oath of Supremacy. More’s witness has inspired people of faith for many centuries, as he stood firmly for the rights of conscience despite pressure from the King.

“On his way to the Tower one of his daughters, named Margaret, pushed through the archers and guards, and held him in her embrace some time without being able to speak. Afterwards More, asking leave of the archers, bade her have patience, for it was God's will, and she had long known the secret of his heart. After going 10 or 12 steps she returned and embraced him again, to which he said nothing, except to bid her pray to God for his soul; and this without tears or change of color. On the Tuesday following he was beheaded in the open space in front of the Tower. A little before his death he asked those present to pray to God for him and he would do the same for them [in the other world.] He then be sought them earnestly to pray to God to give the King good counsel, protesting that he died his faithful servant, and God's first."

The Paris Newsletter Account of More’s Trial and Execution,
August 4, 1535

Four Things To Know About The 501(c)(3) Organizational and Operational Tests

November 14, 2023 | To maintain your organization’s status as a 501(c)(3), your organization must always be “organized and operated exclusively for exempt purposes.” This requires you to understand the basic requirements of maintaining that status, such as operating for a particular exempt purpose (religious, charitable, etc.) and not conducting business for the financial benefit of any private individual. Did you know that there are very specific tests to determine whether your organization is “organized and operated exclusively for exempt purposes,” as specified in 501(c)(3)? These specific tests are known as the Organizational and Operational Tests of 501(c)(3). This article outlines four points to give you a better understanding of what is required to make sure your organization continues to qualify for tax exemption.


Vocation of a Lawyer: Prayer

October 23, 2023 | Prayer is the practice of being aware of God’s presence, of looking at Him and loving Him. What does this look like for the layman, and particularly for the Christian lawyer? How, specifically, ought the lawyer to live his vocation in a way where he prays without ceasing?


Notas de Campo: Una Guía para Registrar su Organización en Pennsylvania

October 5, 2023 | Como abogado trabajando en Napa Legal, me han encomendado con la registración de nuestra organización benéfica en el estado de Pennsylvania. He trabajado como abogado por varios años, y después de un par de meses en Napa Legal, tengo un buen entendimiento de las leyes sobre el registro de organizaciones benéficas, exenciones de impuestos para las organizaciones benéficas, y mas. Sin embargo, al pedirme hacer el trabajo de registrar Napa Legal como empresa extranjera, completar la registración para recaudar fondos, y determinar si Napa Legal necesita aplicar para exención de impuesto de empresas, reaccioné como muchos de ustedes que dirigen organizaciones religiosas: temía la experiencia que venía y quería posponerla.


Vocation of a Lawyer: Vocation in General

October 4, 2023 | At Napa Legal, we care very much about the vocation of the lawyer, especially the lawyer as counselor. Catholics often speak about their “vocations,” and rightly so. Our calling from God is about the very meaning of life. But what does it mean to have a vocation as a lawyer? What makes a lawyer good? But before delving into the particulars of the lawyer’s vocation, it may be best to take a step back and address two prior questions: What is a vocation in the first place? And what is the vocation of a layman in general?


Field Notes to Registering Your Nonprofit in a Foreign State: Pennsylvania

August 7, 2023 | As an attorney working at Napa Legal, I have been tasked with registering our nonprofit entity in Pennsylvania. I have worked as an attorney for several years and, after a couple months at Napa Legal, have a good grasp of charitable registration laws, tax exemptions for nonprofit organizations, etc. Yet, when being asked to do the actual work of registering Napa Legal as a foreign business, completing the charitable solicitation registration, and determining whether Napa Legal needs to apply for a corporate income tax exemption, I reacted like many of you who run religious organizations: I dreaded the experience to come and wanted to put it off.


When to Consider a Third Party Audit

August 2, 2023 | In the same way that some private companies regularly carry out external audits, (audits performed by a third party, not someone affiliated with the company), religious organizations can also carry out external audits. As this post will demonstrate, there are times it may be wise for your organization to do so.


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