Annotated Constitution - VI. Public Religious Institutions

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A. The Religio Romana, the worship of the Gods and Goddesses of Rome, shall be the official religion of Nova Roma. All magistrates and Senators, as officers of the State, shall be required to publicly show respect for the Religio Romana and the Gods and Goddesses that made Rome great. Magistrates, Senators, and citizens need not be practitioners of the Religio Romana, but may not engage in any activity that intentionally blasphemes or defames the Gods, the Religio Romana, or its practitioners.

B. The priesthoods of the Gods of Rome shall be organized as closely as practical on the ancient Roman model. The institutions of the Religio Romana shall have authority over religious matters on the level of the state and nation only, maintaining the religious rites of the State and providing resources pertaining to the Religio Romana which Citizens may make use of if they choose. Nova Roma shall approach all other religions with a syncretistic outlook, offering friendship to all paths which acknowledge the right of those who practice and honor the Religio Romana to do so and respect the beliefs thereof. Only Citizens of Nova Roma may be members of the public institutions of the Religio Romana, which shall be organized, and have their responsibilities divided, as follows:
1. The collegium pontificum (college of pontiffs) shall be the highest of the priestly collegia. It shall consist of the Pontifex Maximus, fourteen Pontifices, twelve flamines, six Sacerdotes Vestales, and the Rex and Regina Sacrorum. The collegium pontificum shall appoint its own members. The collegium pontificum shall have the following honors, powers, and responsibilities:
a. To control the calendar, and determine when the festivals and dies fasti and dies nefasti shall occur, and what their effects shall be, within the boundaries of the example of ancient Rome;
b. To have ritual responsibilities within the Religio Romana; and general authority over the institutions, rites, rituals, and priesthoods of the public Religio Romana;
c. To issue decreta (decrees) on matters relevant to the Religio Romana and its own internal procedures (such decreta may not be overruled by laws passed in the comitia or Senatus consultum).
2. The Collegium Augurum (College of Augurs) shall be the second-highest ranked of the priestly Collegia. The eldest member of the Collegium shall be the Magister Collegii. The Collegium Augurum shall consist of nine Augurs, five from the Plebeian order and four from the Patrician order. They shall be appointed by the Collegium Pontificum, and shall hold their offices for life, excepting in cases of resignation of office, resignation of citizenship, or loss of Assiduus citizenship by process of law. Resignation of office or citizenship by an Augur must be made in writing to the Pontifex Maximus and the Magister Collegii; the Pontifex Maximus and Magister Collegii shall be informed in writing of any process of law by which such an Augur has lost citizenship. Augurs who have resigned their office, resigned their citizenship, or have lost their citizenship by process of law shall remain sacri in their persons but may exercise no augural powers or functions, nor shall they be accounted members of the Collegium Augurum.
a. The collegium augurum shall have the following honors, powers, and responsibilities:
1. To research, practice, and uphold the ars auguria (the art of interpreting divine signs and omens, solicited or otherwise);
2. To issue decreta (decrees) on matters of the ars auguria and its own internal procedures (such decreta may not be overruled by laws passed in the comitia or Senatus consultum).
b. Individual augurs shall have the following honors, powers, and responsibilities:
1. To define templum (sacred space) and celebrate auguria (the rites of augury);
2. To declare obnuntiatio (a declaration that unfavorable and unsolicited omens have been observed that justify a delay of a meeting of one of the comitia or the Senate).
3. Other institutions and priesthoods may be instituted, and the rules for such set, by the collegium pontificum, in accordance with the ancient models of the Religio Romana as practiced by our spiritual ancestors.
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