FUZZY: Midmarch Religious Council.   Posted by _ Brother Barthomew.Group: 0
_ Brother Barthomew
 NPC e, 31 posts
 NPC - Henry's Chaplain
 Priest of Pharasma
Tue 9 Jun 2020
at 15:29
FUZZY: Midmarch Religious Council
This thread is open so that everyone can see it.  However, only Divine Casters may post here.  It doesn't matter what your class, so long as you cast spells granted by a deity - this thread is for you.  That also includes any characters who will receive Divine Spells at a later level  (ie paladins and Rangers)

You may, of course, PM clerics you know, asking them to put your case forwards.


"Lord Henry has asked me to call you together so that you can discuss a number of religious matters that have come to light recently.  There has been discussion concerning the worship of Hanspur, Gyronna and Besmara.  Some have said that we should ban the worship of these deities, while other have suggested restrictions.

Henry would like to understand the position of the Clergy of Midmarch."





Gyronna = https://pathfinderwiki.com/wiki/Gyronna
Hanspur = https://pathfinderwiki.com/wiki/Hanspur
Besmara = https://pathfinderwiki.com/wiki/Besmara

This message was last edited by the player at 15:52, Tue 09 June 2020.

Kendrick Winters
 player, 458 posts
 Marshal-Dominus
 Knight Paladin of Iomedae
Tue 9 Jun 2020
at 20:37
FUZZY: Midmarch Religious Council
"Before we discuss the ban of worship regarding a few specific deities. I have a question for those churches that are allowed to gather in the Midmarch. What responsibilities are expected from these churches? I would hope at the very least, they would have to answer the call when Lord Henry commands them. Are there any others?" Kendrick looked around the room to gauge the reactions of the various representatives that gathered for this discussion.
Alisa D'Medvyed
 player, 279 posts
 Half-elf Cleric
Tue 9 Jun 2020
at 21:23
FUZZY: Midmarch Religious Council
Alisa felt that Kendrick's question was a valid and important one.   But she also knew what she wished to say as regards the three in question, and decided to go ahead and get it out now-

"For those who don't know me, I am Alisa D'Medvyed, priestess of the mostly forgotten, yet not wholly gone, Acavna.  And I will offer my clear feelings on the potential presence of these three faiths in our lands."

"And I shall start with the worst of them, that being Gyronna's sect.  While I do feel compassion for some of those whom end up in the sick embrace of that spiteful faith, I can in no way condone a religion that delights in setting friends and loved ones at each others throats.  And that also doesn't blink at robbing cradles, nor stooping to murder if it happens to serve their ends.  Endorsing this faith is, in my view, tantamount to telling the population that if some tragedy should befall you, then you are entitled to spend the rest of your days taking it out on the innocent."    She shook her white-maned head, lips frowning in her obvious distaste for Gyronna's creed.

"Now, as for Hanspur...I doubt we'd otherwise be discussing this sect...save for the fact that cold blooded murder is woven straight into their ritual and rites. And what precedent does it set, to know for certain that the worshipers of this faith will commit murder, that it's only a matter of time, and to turn a blind on it? Hanspur is a failed demi-god, if I understand right, mostly abandoned by Gozreh, and held as an affront by Pharasma.   A pair of gods have spoken as regards this one, and I feel we should pay heed to what they are indirectly telling us."

"Besmara...the saint of the three," Alisa quipped in plain humor.   "Relatively speaking. I could almost see making a case for her...in the same way that gods of thievery are sometimes accepted, if not loved, in all quarters.  However, piracy is more likely than thievery to lead to bloodshed and loss of life. And the message here would be that it can be justified or excused as a matter of religious practice."  She shook her again.

"I may well be prejudiced.  The one I serve made a great sacrifice to protect and spare mortal life.   And I wouldn't at all be living up to her example by tolerating faiths that hold life in such disregard."  She paused for a moment, almost finished, before adding-

"If the choice were made to outright ban their practice, however -- the downside is that they may then practice in secret, and be even more dangerous for it.  As well as possibly holding a grudge."   

This message was last edited by the player at 21:55, Tue 09 June 2020.

Zelona
 player, 381 posts
 Half-elf Druid - HP 32/32
 AC: 19/12/17
Tue 9 Jun 2020
at 22:49
FUZZY: Midmarch Religious Council
"I wouldn't look to the followers of Gozreh to flock to Henry's banner as part of their worship of Gozreh. Though there's not really a church to the Wind and Waves here in Midmarch yet, I think in time that will change in the Narlmarches."

"Any church can gather in Midmarch right now, just only a handful have any kind of officially recognized houses or shrines of worship."
she shrugged.

"Hanspur... I think of the three he's the most misunderstood. He's not a failed demigod. He is a demigod. That said, I know most places ban his worship because of the rituals of his followers. Hells, maybe we could help encourage a new sect of Hanspur worship that just simulates the drownings or something."

"Gyronna has nothing good to offer and I don't think we should allow official houses of worship to be publicly built to her or authorized her worship in Midmarch.

"...And Besmara is just too chaotic to allow to have a large following here. it's antithetical to building a society or region up to worship piracy."

Lutz of Ironkeep
Wed 10 Jun 2020
at 06:43
FUZZY: Midmarch Religious Council
Brother Lutz wears his best leather apron, although the grey leather shows signs of having been used to work in the forge.  His dark hair and beard are freshly washed and oiled, and the beard is decorated with the gold rings used to indicate his skills and position within the faith.  When it is his turn to speak Lutz stands then, touching the hammer on his belt as a reminder that he speaks for Torag, says his piece.

”Torag does not approve of any of them.  Drowning people, piracy and spreading hatred should not be tolerated in a proper society.”

Then with a ‘hurrumph’ he sits back down, crosses his arms across his chest and looks around the table, almost daring someone to contradict him.
~Brother Thaddeus Riverson
 NPCe, 2 posts
 Acolyte of Iomedae
 Domitius Companion
Wed 10 Jun 2020
at 07:57
FUZZY: Midmarch Religious Council
The gpod brother stood, he wore the symbol of Iomedae on his tabard and a longsword at his belt.  "Lord Kendrick, are you saying the churches should be subservient to Lord Henry?  Our commission comes from the divine not the whims of the secular powers and thus we should retain our independence. "
~Aranel Romanese
 NPC e, 1 post
Wed 10 Jun 2020
at 09:15
FUZZY: Midmarch Religious Council
The elderly grey-haired woman in black robes chimes in on the conversation. "You will get no arguments on that from me, Brother Lutz. Indeed, practice of these morally reprehensible rites may not only be the effect of the chaotic, lawless and short-lived nature of the River Kingdoms, but at least in part its cause as well. Murder, strife, piracy, banditry - there are good reasons worship of these entities is proscribed in most civilized realms."

She is also interested in what did Kendrick mean by his question. "The church of Grandmother Crow obeys the just laws of the realm and gives succour to its orphans and the poor. Beyond that, what exactly is expected of us? We have no armies to answer anyone's call."
Ethankos
 player, 152 posts
 Cleric of Pharasma
 All stories end in death
Wed 10 Jun 2020
at 13:07
FUZZY: Midmarch Religious Council
The large man permits himself a small smile as Brother Thaddeus says his piece, but sets that aside, seemingly troubled as he speaks up.

"Pharasma teaches that we should not judge the actions of others in life - that burden is hers alone when finally their souls stand before her."

"Nor would she quarrel with any other god ... with perhaps a few exceptions."

"Yet I am but a poor, unworthy priest," Ethankos smiles once more, more broadly, "and there are many in this world who bring with them weal and woe, and they I would gladly hurry on to that final judgment."

"Tolerating the worship of those three, I feel would in no way bring hope or peace to these lands."
Andalon de Lebeda
 Player, 927 posts
 Bishop at Cathedral of
 Abadar in Tusk City
Wed 10 Jun 2020
at 14:27
FUZZY: Midmarch Religious Council
"I have no wish to single out individual deities whose worship is to be banned, although there may be some where we decide that is the appropriate course. Hanspur may be one of those. He is not inherently evil but one of his rituals involves drowning a victim in the river, which cannot be condoned. But equally concerning is Hanspur's strength in the River Kingdoms and his church's promotion of the River Freedoms, which we have decided we will not implement in Midmarch. Devoted followers of Hanspur are unlikely to be friendly to Midmarch, although that may be as much about politics as religion. My understanding is that the worship of Hanspur has been banned by the Midmarch Council. I believe that this is already known by a number of people in the River Kingdoms, so there is no turning back from that position now, even if we wanted to.

"I would strongly advise that the worship of all evil deities should be banned throughout Midmarch, with anyone caught actively worshipping an evil deity to be exiled from Midmarch. Gyronna is just one of the evil deities that would apply to.

"If someone's worship of their deity involves a criminal act then they should be tried and punished for those crimes, and religious beliefs should not be allowed as a legal defence of those crimes. That would, of course, include anyone who drowns an innocent victim in Hanspur's name, regardless whether the deity himself is considered evil or not.

"Places of worship of evil deities should not be permitted to be constructed in any of our settlements. If such places exist in less civilised places in Midmarch, well, we should endeavour to weed them out whenever it is practical to do so but I would caution the inexperienced against tampering with things they do not understand. Such places can be extremely dangerous to deal with. If in doubt, report it and someone more experienced can decide how to deal with it.

"Any proposal to build a place of worship to any deity in any settlement requires the approval of the relevant authority, such as the City Council in Tusk. I would suggest that a deity like Besmara, the goddess of Piracy, Strife and Sea Monsters, should not be permitted any substantial place of worship in any settlement in Midmarch, even if she is not actually considered to be an evil deity. On the other hand, if some ship's captain considers it necessary to maintain a small shrine to Besmara on his ship to ward against pirates and sea monsters, so be it.

"Actually, I would consider that approval to build a place of worship to a deity in a settlement would come with a perfectly reasonable expectation that the clergy attached to that place of worship should aid the settlement in whatever way they can in times of need. Some of us are suited to taking up arms in defence of the settlement, or to defending the settlement through the power of our prayers, while some are better suited to caring for the sick or wounded. I think that would be the most appropriate way to answer Kendrick's question."

~Jensen
 NPC p, 23 posts
 Mordanian
Wed 10 Jun 2020
at 14:53
FUZZY: Midmarch Religious Council
“So nobody gets banned, right?” Jensen asked as he shuffled his big feet. “That’s good. Nobody can argue religious intolerance. It’s just that no crime is allowed based on religious freedom. Murder is illegal. Thievery is illegal. Destruction of property is illegal. Now we just need to make a law stating that Evil is illegal.”

The paladin scuffed his boots together. “Now hear me out. If Evil is illegal, then worship of an Evil deity is illegal. And if you say that Evil can’t be made illegal, then I think you should revise your knowledge of most church tenets. And non-evil churches that hold destructive practices, well like you said, that’s a zoning problem taken up with the local councils.”
Kendrick Winters
 player, 459 posts
 Marshal-Dominus
 Knight Paladin of Iomedae
Wed 10 Jun 2020
at 18:33
Re: FUZZY: Midmarch Religious Council
~Brother Thaddeus Riverson:
The gpod brother stood, he wore the symbol of Iomedae on his tabard and a longsword at his belt.  "Lord Kendrick, are you saying the churches should be subservient to Lord Henry?  Our commission comes from the divine not the whims of the secular powers and thus we should retain our independence. "


"I am saying that if Lord Henry is allowing that churches to be built anywhere in the Midmarch, then there is a responsibility that goes with that." Kendrick answered the good brother. "Am I wrong in this expectation?"
Alisa D'Medvyed
 player, 281 posts
 Half-elf Cleric
Wed 10 Jun 2020
at 22:50
Re: FUZZY: Midmarch Religious Council
"I don't think you are at all, Sir Kendrick.  And Bishop de Lebeda I believe phrased it well as 'a perfectly reasonable expectation.'  As opposed to an ordinance, or a command.   Most of us want to help Lord Henry, and our communities. It's a willing alliance, not a forced obligation.   More, I believe Henry is wise enough to understand any true priest or priestess serves their god, first and foremost.  While I could be wrong, I think situations where there would be a serious conflict of interest would be fairly rare.  And able to be settled in a way acceptable to both parties."

Not that Alisa expected much complication for herself.  Though she planned one day for something more, there was no church of Acavna, and she was the only 'force' serving the goddess in this land.

This message was last edited by the player at 23:20, Wed 10 June 2020.

~Brother Thaddeus Riverson
 NPCe, 3 posts
 Acolyte of Iomedae
 Domitius Companion
Thu 11 Jun 2020
at 01:05
Re: FUZZY: Midmarch Religious Council
Kendrick Winters:
"I am saying that if Lord Henry is allowing that churches to be built anywhere in the Midmarch, then there is a responsibility that goes with that." Kendrick answered the good brother. "Am I wrong in this expectation?"


"While it isn't wrong for Lord Henry to expect cooperation from the churches within Midmarch.  It is unreasonable to assume that Lord Henry has the right to decide who controls those churches.  After all the Bishop of Abadar in Tusk holds a similar rank to his Lordship.  Is it not ones Diety to whom we are all obligated to before any man?
_ Brother Barthomew
 NPC e, 32 posts
 NPC - Henry's Chaplain
 Priest of Pharasma
Thu 11 Jun 2020
at 08:08
Re: FUZZY: Midmarch Religious Council
Listening to the conversation, Brother Bart lays out Henry's position.

"Lord Henry, as head of the leMaistre Family, exercises the right to appoint the head of the Pharasmin Abbey in Tusk.  The House of Pharasma in Tusk was founded with his family's money, his cousin is the Abbess - and his family, as founders of the house, retain an interest in appointing succeeding leaders.  There is, of course, a clause that requires that any new Abbot or Abbess is a properly consecrated priest of Pharasma, but the final choice rests with Henry."

Then with a nod towards Ethankos and Marceline he continues  "Henry does not, of course, object to any other Pharasmin priests setting up their own religious houses or ministering to their followers."



That mimics the Patronage system of some early British Churches, that were established by nobles. Second son of the Noble went into the church, and finished up running the local church (if they didn't get a higher ranking position)  In the case of some abbeys, appointment of a new Abbot required authority from the King.
Ethankos
 player, 153 posts
 Cleric of Pharasma
 All stories end in death
Thu 11 Jun 2020
at 13:46
Re: FUZZY: Midmarch Religious Council
"I know little of matters politic," Ethankos admits, his voice a low rumble, "yet I consider myself here in Midmarch, a priest of Pharasma, by Lord Henry's sufferance. He is the Warden of these lands after all, and has a responsibility to look after all who dwell here."

"While what authority we priests have comes from the gods, still we are fallible men and women ... and we are subject to those that stand above us within our own orders, as Lord Henry is subject to those who rank above him."

"What of the farmers and smiths and shopkeeps who work hard and ply their trade ?  What should they do if their priest says one thing and the law another ?"

"Church and state can work together, but we too must be subject to the law and by extension to the ultimate authority of Lord Henry ... though I find it heartening that our ruler has not simply pronounced those laws from on high, but seeks our help to shape them for the benefit of all."
~Aranel Romanese
 NPC e, 2 posts
Thu 11 Jun 2020
at 16:55
Re: FUZZY: Midmarch Religious Council
Aranel is still a bit fuzzy on what is actually being discussed here. "These responsibilities, what form exactly should they take? Unless I am mistaken, none of us here command any man-at-arms to pledge to Lord Henry. And all of us, I believe, already obey the laws of the land, and help our communities as much as we can. What exactly is left that we should be doing?"

The only concrete thing that I see would be a magic economy tax. Unless we are taking about a more... abstract form of support? In which case, harrumph, harrumph. The church of Andoletta continues to support Lord Henry's requests 100%, as long as he continues to never actually make any.
_ Brother Barthomew
 NPC e, 33 posts
 NPC - Henry's Chaplain
 Priest of Pharasma
Thu 11 Jun 2020
at 18:15
Re: FUZZY: Midmarch Religious Council
"I believe that the only religious establishment with people under arms is the House of Iomedae in Tusk, who fall under the command of Lord Borric and Lady Mariam."  Brother Bart offers, naming the Chief Magistrate of Midmarch.  "And I am sure that Borric would take whatever course of action he felt appropriate."
Kendrick Winters
 player, 462 posts
 Marshal-Dominus
 Knight Paladin of Iomedae
Thu 11 Jun 2020
at 18:23
Re: FUZZY: Midmarch Religious Council
"The churches can offer other support besides people under arms." Kendrick added, "The men will need priest that can cure wounds and many other things that are supportive in nature. Don't forget about logistics. Wars are won by the speed of supplies, not only the sword that swings it."
~Aranel Romanese
 NPC e, 3 posts
Fri 12 Jun 2020
at 08:24
Re: FUZZY: Midmarch Religious Council
"I am sure we are all doing and will keep doing everything we can do to help. But I cannot fail to notice that only obligations mentioned so far were of decidedly military nature. That is understandable if we are talking about the church of Iomedae, but many faiths are far less martially inclined than that of the Inheritor. And yet I'd like to think we are all already making a valuable contribution to the realm."

Aranel looks over the assembled Council.

"And if not, if our contribution is to be judged chiefly by our military usefulness, then this Council might wish to reconsider allowing followers of the Pirate Queen to join us after all. I am sure her pirates would be far more useful to our military than my teachers could ever be."
_ Brother Barthomew
 NPC e, 34 posts
 NPC - Henry's Chaplain
 Priest of Pharasma
Fri 12 Jun 2020
at 08:31
Re: FUZZY: Midmarch Religious Council
"Which brings us back to the original question of Gyronna, Hanspur and Besmara".
Andalon de Lebeda
 Player, 928 posts
 Bishop at Cathedral of
 Abadar in Tusk City
Fri 12 Jun 2020
at 13:01
Re: FUZZY: Midmarch Religious Council
"I believe I stated my opinion on those three earlier, Brother," Andalon responded. "I don't believe there was any real disagreement on the basic principles.

"The worship of all evil deities should be banned throughout Midmarch, with anyone caught actively worshipping an evil deity to be exiled from Midmarch. Gyronna is just one of the evil deities that would apply to.

"Hanspur is not truly evil but worship of Hanspur is banned in most civilised lands because one of his rituals requires his worshipers to drown someone in the river. But politics is an equally important reason to ban the worship of Hanspur. His worship primarily in the River Kingdoms means that any presence of his church in Midmarch is likely to be a haven for agents of the River Kingdoms, enemies of Midmarch. Therefore my understanding is that the worship of Hanspur has been banned by the Midmarch Council and I would certainly not wish to overturn that decision.

"Besmara is not truly evil either and there has not been any political reason to ban her worship in Midmarch yet. Piracy is a crime and will be punished as such, but worship of Besmara is not. I would not vote in favour of any proposal to build a place of worship to the goddess of Piracy, Strife and Sea Monsters in any settlement in Midmarch, but I would not seek to ban the worship of Besmara outright in Midmarch.

"Does anyone disagree?"

~Brother Thaddeus Riverson
 NPCe, 4 posts
 Acolyte of Iomedae
 Domitius Companion
Fri 12 Jun 2020
at 13:16
Re: FUZZY: Midmarch Religious Council
Rising once more to speak Brother Thaddeus clears his throat "Your Grace, if we are outlawing evil worship then should we not also ban the worship of chaos and entropy?  Are they not more likely to transgress the law than say a devotee of Asmodeus?  Dieties like Besmara, Gorum, Calistria, Desna, Rovagug and Lamashtu are all inimical to the rule of Law."
Ethankos
 player, 154 posts
 Cleric of Pharasma
 All stories end in death
Fri 12 Jun 2020
at 13:30
Re: FUZZY: Midmarch Religious Council
"That one's a troublemaker," Ethankos vouchsafes to Andalon, not quietly and with a grin and a wave of apology to Brother Thaddeus should he take offense at the jest.

"Do any of those faiths espouse disobeying the laws of the land ?" the priest asks.  "I fear I may not have been as attentive as I should have been to much more than the broader aims of gods other than my own."

"Perhaps we should have thought to order meals brought in - this discussion may take a while." the large man tells the Bishop of Abadar as he settles into his chair once more.  "I just hope none here intend to argue the virtues of the undead !"
_ Brother Barthomew
 NPC e, 35 posts
 NPC - Henry's Chaplain
 Priest of Pharasma
Fri 12 Jun 2020
at 14:13
Re: FUZZY: Midmarch Religious Council
Bart shudders at the thought.
Andalon de Lebeda
 Player, 929 posts
 Bishop at Cathedral of
 Abadar in Tusk City
Fri 12 Jun 2020
at 15:18
Re: FUZZY: Midmarch Religious Council
"Whilst I do have some sympathy with your point of view, Brother Thaddeus, the Midmarch Religious Council covers quite a range of theological points of view. I think we are all agreed that we cannot allow the worship of evil deities but I am equally sure that we will never reach agreement on the banning of chaotic deities as well.

"However, I do agree that some faiths are more disruptive than we would wish and probably should not be permitted to establish places of worship in our settlements.

"Rovagug and Lamashtu are utterly evil and therefore would be banned outright.

"Gorum is the god of strength, battle and weapons, attracting worshippers among soldiers, mercenaries, brigands, bloodthirsty savages, half-orcs and barbarians. He is in a similar position to Besmara, as far as I can see. This Council is not likely to agree to ban his worship, regardless of the personal opinions of lawful clerics like you and I. His worshippers will be judged for their actions, not their faith, but I would not wish to see a temple of Gorum built in Tusk.

"Neither would I wish to see a temple of Calistria - the goddess of Trickery, Lust and Revenge - but again I do not expect this Council to ban her worship entirely.

"Desna is the goddess of Dreams, Luck, Stars and Travelers. She would be one of the most benevolent of the chaotic deities and I would expect there is no chance this Council would agree to ban her worship.

"As for Asmodeus, however much some of us might grudgingly respect the aspect of him that is the Prince of Law, there is no way I would wish his harsh and brutal interpretation of the law to hold sway anywhere in Midmarch."