Church News Mid 999

Volume 2, Issue 3

Mortals, and why wer are stronger than gods. Gods... All powerful... or are they? I would like to put forward for discussion a theory of mine, that some may find disturbing, others will find heartening, and the God botherers out there will find terrifying as they may all loose their power over mankind. Firstly, where does a God get His/Her strength from? Is it from within, or is it from their worshippers? Certainly a difficult answer, but my feeling is the latter. Why else would they be so intrested in worshippers? Why else would they have a need to give gifts of their power in return for your devotion? Why else is this new God suddently gaining strength all the time if it is not for the power he gains as he gains followers? If this were the case then what would a God be without followers? My supposition is this, Gods are powerful creatures, but the power they have is the power we give them in worship, in turn they return that power to some chosen few of their followers as prayers and rituals. In this case a God is only a focus for the strength of many, that it may be utilised by a few. If this were true if people stopped following the God, its strength would wan and falter until forgotten and wasted away. This is one reason why mortals are more powerful than Gods, if we stop believing in them, they will leave us alone, but if they stop believing in us, so what... Secondly, Gods desire your worship, but it must be given, it can not be forced, so in this way again Mortals have the upper hand. We may choose to worship them if we wish, but they may not choose who worships them. Thirdly, I have witnessed Necromancers at work, and have been immensely impressed, even our local Necromancer, who is a bit mad at the best of times, has more power over undead than any priest I know. Priests may destroy minor undead, but with the right tools any mere farmer can as well (So long as he holds his ground and does not panic), but with the more powerful undead all he can do is send it home for a short time to cool off. A Necromancer on the other hand uses his own powers, not those given by a restrictive God, and he can no only send them home, he can destroy or create them as he sees fit! I have pondered this, and again I believe this comes down to the fact that a God needs to be worshipped to exist. If a priest could destory undead would he be needed once they are gone? But if he can only sned them away he will need to stay where he is to make sure they never return. In this way a village will need to support the priest continually and eventually the villagers will be forced into the Gods worship through a form of blackmail "Worship with me or I leave and the undead will come back", "Become a convert and you can hold them at bay as well, because I do not have the ability to destory them you must all learn to hold them at bay". This is the worst form of blackmail, because you are told and taught it's for your own good! I do not refute the existence of Gods, I may never have met them, but I have seen their Work, what I refuse to accept is the belief that they are more powerful than man, without us they would never exist, and without our belief they will cease to exist. I believe in one thing, the strength of humanity, and what we can achieve when we stand on our own feet and support each other, no matter if you be Human, Elf or Orc, if we are as one our belief will power ourselves and the gods can go hang.

Anon Human Devotee

Thellona gets TOUGH on Crowa

A message to all members of the Church of Crowa, particularly High Father Brandt, Primate; from High Mother Thellona O'Redsmith.

What has happened to the majestic church of Crowa? Has the influence of the Nameless One penetrated our members weakening their resolve, eating at their courage, leading us down the wrong paths to destruction and shame!!

Turn to Crowa again, and lay yourselves before her. Lean on your lady - she will give you strength and courage, a will to fight and the blessing of victory. Lift your defiance against the Nameless one who only has presence through our failures. We will not let him use them against us, they are past and a new day and a new fight dawns. Respond to the call or Crowa, rouse yourselves and sharpen your weapons. Ready yourselves to fight for all that is right, to defend the life you once knew and wish to know again.

Peoples, Churches even Gods may rise and fall. We have lost some courageous brothers and sisters who were strong in the faith and a torch to many.

However, look beyond their deaths, whatever the circumstances, to a fresh fight for Crowa. Their lives were defined not by their relationships but by their service to Crowa and in what they achieved as her instruments. Likewise, look first to your Goddess, not to your feelings of loss, and then you will best honour both Crowa and them.

Crowa will forgive most folly, but repentence must be followed by renewed vigour. Achieve this and the Church will be strong again, and the name of Crowa will be the loudest shout throughout Ithron.

Brandt comes clean over Astona

Brothers and sisters,

Of all the things I have had to write to you, this is undoubtedly the hardest. As I'm sure many of you are now aware I have failed both my church and my Goddess - and badly so.

Almost a year ago I told High Father Kent that I was not a warrior but a priest. It is then ironic that in Darian this month past that The Goddess gave me strength to scatter both dark elves and dragonkin before me in battle... and yet I failed in the most basic duty of a priest; to protect the souls of my flock.

Although the worshippers of the dragon were defeated, Prelate Astona and many of the knights died in that first battle, and many other crowans in the second agsinst the dragon itself. The school of demonology informed me that it had a demon which was master of all four schools and could affect resurection. Since the schoolmaster and I bothe believed that Astona was needed alice if hundreds of lives were to be saved, I allowed him to continue and the demon demanded the High Primate's personal mark in return for the service... I agreed since I believed that the ends justified the means.

It was after that things went wrong. The demon agreed that my mark was prince enough for the ressurection but now added that to ressurect the Defender of the Faith of Sharda's foremost enemy it would need the permission of the Emperor himself. It left and returned with the Emperor's emissary which demanded a second price - the Crowa Blade in return for permission to proceed. I explained that the sword was not mine to give and it accused me of backing our of the deal, saying it would take Astona's soul in payment for its efforts. Both Joshua Nails and I offered our own souls in place of Astona's but it refused.

Since I could not stand before The Goddess and say I had merely watched as Astona's soul was taken I tried to interpose myself and disrupt the ritual, but the demon ignored my efforts. As it came to the end of its ritual I had no other ideas so I picked up the Crowa Blade and struck the demon. It exploded with immense force, vanishing back to Sharda with Astona's body - those of us present were only saved by the fact that the sword absorbed the blast, cracked and vanished. After that I remember nothing for Nails' demonic hand leapt belatedly to the defence of the greater demon and cut me down.

The school of demonology and I have begun efforts to regain Astona's soul, and I pray to Crowa to find if there is any way in which the sword may be regained. Regardless of this however I feel that a soul - of my friend, and of the champion of my goddess - has been denied access to Crowa's halls and condemned to Sharda by vitue of my pride and my error of judgment. As such there are many questions I need to answer for myself, and thus I have tendered my resignation as primate to the Council of Elders and the new Defender of Crowa's faith; Prelate Conrad Rampling. U have confidence in the abilities of Prelate Rampling, Holy Mother Rose Madeline and you all to live up to the standards set by Astona, Whiteraven, Murren, Thellona and others. I remain a servant of the Lady Crowa and will continue to serve her to the best of my ability in whatever role falls to me - as High Primate of Ithron or simple soldier; I obey the wishes of my church and my Goddess. Praise be unto the Lady Crowa. Praise be unto The Seven.

High Father Brandt

Vleyborian is Scum Sucking Thief!!!

This letter was sent to the Norham Post by Alexander to explain his resignation, he was such a nice guy!!! Now his dead body has turned up, branded as a Thief, can you trust nobody?

To all my friends

Many of you have asked why I have retired from the position of Defender of the Faith of Vleybor, and retired from actively adventuring. Although the last months have been hard for me I feel that my thoughts are now collected enough to tell you.

As most of you know, my life was governed by tow things. Love of my lady Vleybor, and love of the one who was due to be my wife. I will not mention her name for her own religious beliefs. The death of my love broke my life in two. The only hope that I have is that when I am reborn I will meet her again.

At the TrollBall competitions in Blackwater it was seen that I had a disagreement with the other members of my church and I was temporarily removed from the position of DOF. According to official sources this was due to my `immature and irrational behaviour'. This was just one of the problems within the church. Unlike High Father Surican, or "Lady" Jessica Rheinhardt I do not care about my own image, and the work of the White Lady is more important. I have been ordered not to heal people, and not to risk my own life to save others. I have even see a High Priestess of Vleybor not claim a body because it meant getting her robes dirty. Luckily High Father Moroham Veil is now in charge of the church; and he is a good and kind man. I hope that he can make a difference, and change the church around from serving the images and pockets of its members, to serving Lady Vleybor and all the people of Ithron.

I do not mean to openly criticise the church of Vleybor but these things must be said. I am afraid that we are not alone, for the Primages of Sidhe and Rolbor both seem to act the same way... I hope that they will take heed of my words.

I would just like to thank all the people who have influenced my life and turned me into the man I am today. These people have given me something to look for, and however they act or acted cared. With love and honour I honour them all. Jandor Vash-Ro, Wayland, Pope Brandt, Arach, Lord Anakin, Joshua Nails, Dr. Savage and of course my own love.

Maybe when Ithron starts caring again I will feel it appropriate to join you again. Live for the Seven, Ithron and your Friends. Not for yourselves.

For Love

Alexander Shallowbrook

Longstorians get Marching Orders

High Mother Rowan Tasker, Primate

Traldan Church News

Greetings to all the faithful, it is good to speak to you all again. Here I am again sitting by the fire wine in hand considering what to say. This happens every time the Herald contacts me asking for th churches article in advance.

Some of you may be having some trouble with the Mages dictates upon religion, this may have been cleared up by the time that this is published so I apologise if this is out of date. The mages are heathen spell casters owing allegiance to none but themselves, they have no higher ideal or insight from the gods and they have the gall to say that members of the faith are not welcome within the mages guild. If this is the case then they are turning their backs upon the Seven and thus their souls are in peril. Now this may not worry the mages much, probably because they may have to sell their souls for the power to use soulfire, while this may or may not be the case it is the opinion of some of the people I have talked to.

Now a fried of mine is having trouble with an excommunicated superior. In no way should you followe and order from such a person unless you agree with it. These people have been cast out by the god or gods responsible for their inappropriate actions and they wish to tell you how to do your job. If you follow their lead they will drag you down with them and you will burn also soulless and friendless, they are lonely at the bottom and wish for others like them.

As always we need new converts. If you can advance to devoted or priest now would be a good time, especially with this nameless one rearing its incredibly ugly head it would definitely helf the cause and bring a greater force to bear against this evil presence. The more the merrier is what I say.

We as always need more money, we are badly in need of funds churches need money in order to run smoothly and buildings don't build themselves. I personally donate all money I don't need tot he church and as I don't need much in the way of money I only keep enough to replace that which I have used on an outing. Commonly I tithe roughly all of the money I earn., so as much as you can spare the church can use.

Having attended Springfest I can safely say it was quite refreshing to get absolutely slaughtered on wine and good friends, to all who were there my congratulations and thanks we had a laugh did we not, despite the fact that quite a few of us died it all turned out well in at the end.

I would just like to add commiserations to Moroham Veil as your stint as Primate was unfortunately cut short. Congratulations to High Mother Jessica Rheinhart the new Primate of Vleybor and I am sorry but I am still not interested in marriage, I feel that I could not cope with settlind down with a single person just yet and considering my calling I feel that I will never do so. My life is so hard at times! Also I would like to say a fond farewell to the late Guardsargeant of the south Edmund Walker, I knew him for some time and I was sorry to hear of his passing, the Rolborian church will miss you the most I feel as they were lacking in numbers before you left us. This is getting depressing isn't it, also my condolences to the ex-primate of Rolbor he didn't die thankfully but he is no longer in office. To finish I wish to send my heartfelt commiserations to Brandt the High Primate for the loss of his favourite sleeping partner, she was strong, sharp, and as straight as they came, I am of course referring to the Crowan Blade that was sadly lost at Springfest. To add to this list of the sadly departed I must add the whole of the Roses of Crowa barring the head of this distinguished religious order. I am sure that is no reflection upon your skills that they all died within twenty four hourse of you taking the position Madeline. I am especially sad to say that the most chaste woman in Ithron has also deid the Prelate Astona Rose of Crowa this was an especially sad day for all of us. Added to this catalogue of the deceased is a companion I had the pleasure to adventure with on many an occasion the late Coloureseargeant S.G. Jones, I am aware that some of you found him to be an odd sort of person having only one eye, one leg and only two toes remaing upon his right foot, he had other bits missing but the are of a personal nature, I feel that missing that much must have meant he was an old campaigner in the crusades. But no maybe he was just unlucky and it all happened i his first battle in the bar room so he was sent hom. We will all miss this generous character and his sense of humour.

Well I think I will make it a short one, may the Lady shine upon you all.

Bowen

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Council of Fight?

I assume the rumours of members of the Traldan Faith being unjustly treated by "The Council of Light" are not true.

I'd like to think that this elite association spends its days deeply immersed in vital discussion concerning the nature of The Nameless One and his minions, not pointing accusing fingers. I would find it reassuring if I could rely on their wisdom in this time of uncertainty.

How ironic itis to read of an internal squabble, Bicker, Bicker, Bicker, give someone some power and it goes to their heads.

If any Traldan is persecuted because of Her faith, She should report it to me and I will deal with the situation, swiftly and permanently. Do not fear any sarcasm from me of the rest of the church.

Love,

Father Curo Surleeth

Defender of the Faith of Tralda

Does Privet think he should be Primate?

Brandt,

I hear through winding grapevines (it was printed on the cover of the last issue! - Ed) of a rumour I'd rather not hear. I am sure that this is just a rumour and that you are retaining your present position within the Church. This comment is noe due to 'discussion' we have had between us from that day on the Bridge with a Big Demon who nearly wiped out Owyn (Crowa Bless His Soul) but to the fact that you have in mine and many other fellow church members opinion exceede yourselves in your role as Primate and High Primate. In fact we seemed to have been blessed by Crowa with Popes Daddy Cool, Owyn and yourself and this work should continue.

Enough niceness. I understand that there has been a lot of Crowan blood split from the Summer Festival until now, and I ask forgiveness from Crowa daily for my enforced absence and lack of any help I may have been if I were there. The recent incident which I believe may have tipped the scales for you, with the loss of more Crowans, Our Defender of the Faith (Crowa Bless Her Soul) and the Crowa Blade would have been a great blow indeed, but your actions were right and delivered in the right way. Every good Commander and Leader takes responsibility for his or hers charges, and as such, suffers when they suffer. Suffer for a period Brandt, and then reassess your proposal. I understand we are few in the Priesthood now and this should also affect your decision. At this time, do we have one who can take responsibility for the church as you have done? I look forward to spilling blood in the name of our Lady with you and our Brother and Sisters real soon.

Keep the Faith

High Father A. Privet of Crowa

Vleyborian Church turns to new Leadership!!!

At the recent festival of Light, High Mother Jessica was named by the Council of Elders as Moroham's successor to the Primacy. Jessica is the eldest daughter of Earl Reinhart of Brisel and is a well-known "high" society figure. Some reports, including an earlier letter of resignation from previous DOF Alexander of Shallowbrook, have indicated that Jessica might be out of touch with the common people and more concerned with her image than in saving lives. Jessica has stated that she fervently hopes that this is not the case and will let her actions as Primage and as a priest speak for themselves. She first intends to concentrate on raising the positive profile of the church so as to encourage folk to commit their lives to following the White Lady. Other projects to encourage and support all existing members of the church are also underway, including the compilation of a book of prayer to be supplied to all members of the priesthood, a support pack for new priests and devoted and montly classes in healing and counselling techniques. The new Primate is also warmly encouraging all existing members of the church to write to her, introducing themselves and letting her know of any situations they feel she or the church might be able to help with. She would especially like to hear from any kindred or devoted who are either considering supplication or experiencing difficulty in doing so.

Lord of Brisel is not above the Gods

Rumours from Brisel accredit an Earl Rhienhardt, with supporting an act to ban demonology in Brisel and with further saying that he considered it the responsibility of the churches and (legal) schools of magic to deal with those already in his realm.

I cannot speak for the (legal) schools of magic, but I can assure you that it is not your place to speak for the churches. Your comments show your lack of respect for the Gods and for their appointed leaders, the primates.

On matters of faith and the Church th eprimates are the word of the Gods. Your disrespect and impudence to the Gods and the Church is an insult to both. I am sure your actions are from ignorance and not deliberate and so I would encourage you to seek forgiveness and publicly perform an act of penance for your insult. For too long people have shown disrespect to the Gods and is intolerable. You may feel your mortal law protects you from the consequences of your actions, it does not.

The law of the Gods is above the law of man. Seek forgiveness for your actions and walk in the light, showing respect to all the Gods.

Father Ishmael of Rolbor,

Defender of the Faith.

New Religious Appointments!!

Since the recent assassination of Primate Mulg of the Church of Kharach in Labry, the first new Primate of Kharach in what must be nearly 20 years has been announced as High Father Bart of Labry. Bart, author of the Norham Post's "Necrobarticon" column said, "I am disappointed by the lack of members in the Church. People better start joining or people are going to die and Surican, don't knock me out again, or its steel enema time."

The Church of Longstor remained emotionless over the death of the latest Defender of the Faith to die, fighting in the name of Seven. Vincent 'Nature Boy' Solo, originally from the Bolteen and Sintel area, turned up dead, carrying swiftdeathed weapons, obviously part of a set up! His replacement is Arak of Caer-Marw, but we at the post think anyone taking up a defenders job at the moment needs his head examining!!!

Is this Heresy of is it True Faith?

FAITH

I am Nakor Acoma - Devoted follower of Tralda and I believe and show respect in and to eight Gods and Goddesses. I used to believe in one church with seven denominations. The actions and events of last year's festival of Summer have changed this. There can be little debate that there now exist three churches:-

One with six denominations: The Church of the Light - Crowa, Longstor, Vleybor, Rolbor, Kharach and Tralda.

Two with a single denomination: The Church of Darkness - The Nameless One. The Church of Shadows - Sidhe.

Goodness and light have no meaning without the contrast of Evil and darkness and if you have two extremes then you need a balance in the middle. Sidhe seems to have accepted this as The Scales of Sidhe played a major part in allowing certain dark aspets to make it to the menhir.

What is the point of this ramble I hear you ask? Two fold really.

First there are far too many people showing disrespect to The Nameless One. Certain of you out there may know of my lack of respect of Sinner Brandt, which seems to have been borne out by his actions with the Crowa Blade and his deals with demons. Do not mistake this with an disrespect for the Goddess Crowa herself who has played a major part in my early life. I show a similar lack of respect to the followers of The Nameless One but I tend to hit them and not throw my hair in their dinner, but again do not mistake this with any disrespect for The Nameless one.

My faith is very simple - show respect to all Gods and Goddesses oh, and by the way if you...

Attack a shrine to Tralda - I'll kill you.

Attack a shrine to Kharach - I'll kill you.

Attack a shrine to Crowa - I'll kill you.

Attack a shrine to The Nameless One - I'll kill you.

Attack any shrine - I'll kill you.

Second the Guilds and Law are getting involved in faith. A certain Guildmaster has forbidden his members to join any church and the law is define heresy. I'm sorry did we just lose a load of Defender of the Faiths? Faith is a personal matter and if we are to allow Guilds to enact such rulings then the law must step in since the natural check on these things is excluded - even the Defender of the Faith of Vleybor carries a big stick! What has the Archmage got to hide from the prying eyes of the faithful? Why put such matters in the hands of the courts where juries can be threatened and those skilled in arms can act with impunity?

If the Dukes' Council is to do anything useful then let them write a code of laws that places faith where it should be - at the top. Enough of placing the Primate of the most fashionable church on the Guildscouncil that seat belongs to the Primate of Sidhe - The God of Balance.

Father Nakor Acoma

Defender of Faith

Is the Sidhean Church leading us down...

The Road to Ruin?

Ithron could very soon be up to it's neck in False/True Gods, Civil War, Corrupt Arch Mages and Psychotic Religious Zealots, should Ambrose be thinking of putting aid into the coutryside, medicienes and food...... or possibly has he come up with a solution to the problem involving a lot of bricks and a few workmen and some orange lanterns?

We have to find some way of keeping the populace happy.

The suggestion I have is: Major road improvements.

Advantages: The people who have no land to work on because of crop failures etc. can get a job on the road gangas and feed their families. We have better commerce, goods can move around better, making the country richer. We can move food around better, hence feeding the population more efficiently.

We can move troops around more efficiently.

It's a win - win situation, the investment put into the system, will encourage trade from all surrounding countries.

For the use of the Ithronian highway tolls can be charged which increases tax revenues. The populace have jobs, can feed their families and have a better way of life.

Let's take Ithron into the next millennium with a bang.

What do you people think.

Ambrose

PS. I still think its a good idea to build a games stadium, for entertainment for everyone.

Ambrose,

Roads are good.... you can move troops down them.

Brandt

... Once we have the roads built, we go onto sewers and aqueducts, then the land will be whole again after we kick ass, the people can go back to farming and because of the roads and aqueducts, their markets will be bigger and hence more profitable, the roads will generate taxes and Ithron becomes a richer place. Its called civilisation. We become rich and powerfule, wars end and we all live in peace. Its a dream but dreams can come true if we work hard enough. It will not happen in my life time but if I can be part of starting something like this, my time on this earth will be worth something. A few people can make a difference.

Ambrose

ITS COMPETITION TIME AGAIN!!!

Simply finish the following phrase and send it in. Magic Item Prize as usual, the Guildscouncil may need the ideas.

"If I had all the Guildscouncil Money, Power and Influence then for the good of Ithron I would...."

My Favourite Weapon

After reading the various articles about favourite weapons, in the last issue, I felt compelled to put quill to Ale mat and bring everyone's attention to the fact that a tankard has all the benefits of a bottle and more. It takes repeated pummelling before breaking and if used correctly, the startled image of your victims face can be left permanently indented on your favourite drinking vessel, giving years of much merriment. I'll see you down the Leathery Badger.

B. A. Kant.

Guild Protector Scouts. Kindred of Tralda. Kindred of Kharach.

Being a basically in-offensive person with little regard for fighting you may feel it odd for me to have a favourite weapon, well I do have a couple. My very most favourite weapons are daggers, not your everyday daggers but little ones no more than three or four inches long. I know what you are thinking the fact that with such small blades very little damage could ever be done, but with my speed of hand the the small weight of the blades I can strike several times with each hand for most peoples one. As many creatures have found out to their detriment.

I also favour a lovely shiny blade of mine granted to me by the Lady herself a year ago last Winterfest. It was a very moving experience fo myself and a very scary one for the others around me. In the time that I have been granted with it's use I have only used it once at the last Council of War, it did seem to cause the dark gods a great amount of pain.

The other weapon I always carry is a smithy hammer that I inherited from a great friend of mine called Gwynevon who was in that field alongside that of Alchemy he used it to forge items of power so I use it in the hope that it gained some of the power channelled through it.

That's it. All I have to say is "If all else fails, trust to the fruit knife". By Bowen Steadlyn.