The End of Hope – Code, Uniform & Articles of Faith
Code of the Clergy
The Clergy stands above the individual churches with regards to the following issues:
Ratification of any new Church Policy
Ratification of any change in Church Dogma
Ratification of any policy that crosses the Golden Table
Expenditure of Azure Table Resources
Identification and direction of Divine Law
Interpretation of the words of the Gods at Tharinos
The Clergy Expects
Full respect to all other faiths that stand within the pantheon of Dawn, Day and Dusk
The adherence to both Divine and Mortal Law
To show adequate respect to the laws of the Clergy and the members of the Azure Table that uphold them
Code of the End of Hope
You will in all ways be as servants to the flock that we guide; in some ways this will be in the understanding of our faith in otherwise its punishment.
Anger undirected is like faith unpreached, it is our duty to see to that those that are governed by such emotion understand from where it comes and to where it flows.
There are many forms of grief and all are deserving of them, it is our duty to share this knowledge. When grief comes through the loss of a loved one we are on hand to make sure that those suffering know that it is because they loved and were loved in return for example.
The achieving of one’s dreams is to begin the road to torment; hopelessness and misery can both be found along this path and we are expected to know and relate this.
If one of the faithful can understand these lessons and learn from them then they can become stronger through the art of their suffering. In this we must be their salvation.
Pride and arrogance shall not again blind us to either our faith or our mortality, we shall not journey the path of the Devourer in days to come.
The Clergy wear Brown Robes with Black cassocks for most religious ceremonies; the whip of Rayvahn is most often incorporated as a belt. Grey Whisperers wear grey hoods that completely encompass their heads and always carry a Rayvahnite text with them as part of protocol. When travelling the land in the name of the Goddess the followers of Rayvahn wear more conventional garb but must incorporate the whip of Rayvahn, Grey Whisperers still must carry a text of Rayvahn.
Articles of Faith
As a Rayvahnite there are some clear guidelines that are to be followed; as a Holy Warrior or Woundbringer you should follow the code below. This code is the guidance by which you set examples to the world that you strive to protect, a Woundbringer is the shining example of the faith, one who is given great power by the Goddess and to break their tenets would be to break favour with the deity and lose not only the power that he has gifted but more, the very purity of their souls. Following these tenets are a guideline to how piety works and how, as a follower of the faith, your piety can be increased and decreased at the whim of the Gods.
Tenets of The Woundbringers
You will preserve the Church of Rayvahn and her tenets, bowing to those Pure of Faith and obeying her enlightened in all things.
You will seek out those deserving of the gifts of the mistress and bring unto them the retribution from which they cower. You shall offer them no quarter nor mercy despite their station, power or relationship to yourself.
You will not hold back thy anger. It is the gift of the mistress and she sends it to guide you. To hold back your anger is to disobey the will of the mistress.
You will not suffer abominations against Rayvahn to prevail, those that show a mockery of the faith and its purpose are abominations and shall be slain without the blessings of her gifts.
You will show ne’er sympathy, nor grief nor shalt offer aid to those who are suffering or in pain.
You will offer no end to those who are suffering or near death, there shall be no mercy in this life nor in the one beyond.
You will offer no hope nor offer any help that would bring such to those beyond the clergy of Rayvahn. Only she has the right to offer an end to hopelessness and only her faithful are deserving of such a reward.
You will never mete out the gifts of the mistress to the unworthy, those who beg for her embrace shall be left with naught but shattered dreams.
You will never offer peace to an enemy that has assaulted your person nor the sanctity of Rayvahn or her followers. Once the first blow is struck death is the only certainty.
You will offer obedience to no over deity than Rayvahn. To speak the name of another God in reverence shall be a blasphemy and sin.
Day to Day Activities
The Clergy spend a great deal of time as a unit, preparing ledgers and amassing information about those that they feel are appropriate victims for the ladies pleasure. Whilst this is the realm usually of acolytes a Grey Whisperers who is then responsible for selecting the Wound Bringer that will bring the ladies justice to a victim often oversees them. With their return to the basin however the skills of the clergy are more creatively used to extract information from prisoners and to create defences against tactics employed against the basin by the Yama Lords. Again this is the task of the rank and file who attempt to make a public return to a basin that until recently hated and reviled them.
The Grey Whisperers take a more active role in the politics of the Clergy, the Church has long standing issues with the College of Controlling Power, especially over their expulsion from the Royal basin. As such the Grey Whisperers are responsible for incredible attempts to further the ambitions and political power of the Clergy Council as a governing body of magics through faith. They are also responsible for the Church coffers and spend a great deal of time organising Priests and trainees into KRO missions and preaching the word of Rayvahn on the streets to increase the Church funds.
Holy Days and Important Ceremonies
The two great days of importance to any Rayvahnite are the days of Ascension when Rayvahn first rose to the heavens and when she crossed the Golden Bridge on her victorious return to the Tower of Final Grace during the Codex Wars. The First, called the Night of the Glorious Sigh, takes place from Dusk till dawn on the night of the seventh day of Leavesdown. During this ritual several rites are observed that will either heighten the physical or emotional feeling, the Priests then offer up their most harrowing feelings or endure the most horrific of tortures for their goddess. Those most fervent with their gifts are rewarded with visions and quests in dreams as they recuperate.
The second Holy Day is observed on the second Osildas each Earthnew and takes place near Vopanderan at the alleged sight of the foot of the Golden Bridge. Here a great shrine has been built and an area prepared for the arrival of angelic messengers. The faithful arrive en masse after three days of fasting and abstinence and spend the night in vigil and prayer. As the first rays of light strike the windows an Angel or Archangel appears and selects nine of the clergy to be blessed under their own personal blessing, a boon that brings great power and lasts for fully one year.