Location: Almanni Theocracy, northern Rinhony
The Offices of the Lord Theocrat (Aevo)
The Offices of the Lord Theocrat are part of the Almanni Theocracy, a single religious structure that incorporates worship of all the gods both Empyrean and Talion, fitting their respective priesthoods into administrative and functional roles within the Theocracy.
Obviously led by the Lord Theocrat of Almanni, the Offices serve to support the Lord Theocrat in every way. Its junior priests all serve the Theocracy as a whole in a traditional priestly role (unlike the priests of many other gods in the Theocracy). Those priests all work to improve their service and education, hoping to achieve its heights of power, although few ultimately do.
Unlike many offices of the Theocracy, the Lord Theocrat's Offices do have truck with their counterparts outside of Almanni. Indeed, the Offices of the Lord Theocrat are on very good terms with the Ancient and Orthodox Church, supporting their notions of collaborative theology; they simply maintain that they cannot in good faith join their efforts until the Ancient and Orthodox Church has taken the next step and found a place for all the gods in their theology, as the Almanni have done. The Lord Theocrat and the Holy Regent often visit one another on diplomatic pilgrimages and visits of state. Both agree on the heresy that is the Church of Angelic Revelation, however, despite (or perhaps because of) that sect's growing power.
- Led by the Lord Theocrat, a powerful Almanni political figure.
The Hearth-Keepers of Almanni (Edyma)
Operating not merely as the church of Edyma, but also serving as census-takers, population manager and domestic management, the Hearth-Keepers have a reputation for being willing to stand up against the other offices of the Theocracy in favor of the common man. Unfortunately, the Lord Theocrat doesn't often stand with them.
The Almanni Inquisition (Makoryn)
The Almanni Inquisition is a branch of the Almanni Theocracy, a single religious structure that incorporates worship of all the gods both Empyrean and Talion, fitting their respective priesthoods into administrative and functional roles within the Theocracy.
The Inquisition pursues heresy and investigates impious activities in the nation of Almanni. Their agents are empowered to demand that anyone in the nation answer their questions (though an individual's rank in society can require a higher-rank inquisitor to ask those questions). To say that an inquisitor is a feared figure in the nation of Almanni is a dramatic understatement - they arguably wield more power than any other priesthood in Almanni, save perhaps that priesthood of Aevo himself (and even that is only because the Lord Theocrat, who rules the Theocracy, is always a high priest of Aevo).
The Almanni Inquisition, as a Makorynite sect, has nothing to do with the Liminal Orthodoxy of the church. Indeed, inquisitors are persecuted as heretics by the church of Makoryn outside of Almanni, and non-inquisition Makorynites take their lives into their own hands by entering Almanni.
Like all of the sects of the Theocracy, the Inquisition believes that outside sects have defiled the original intent of the gods. Just as the gods work closely together in the fulfillment of their divine duties, so should their priesthoods. The outlander tradition of setting up multiple, often conflicting religious structures for each god is blasphemy - only the Theocracy's organizational mode for all the priesthoods to work together is proper and sacred.
Within the Theocracy, Makorynites focus less on the imprisonment aspects of their god's theology, and much more on his role as a tormentor and torturer. Inquisition Makorynites believe that the primordial Vabrosyn isn't just imprisoned in the Hellshards - he is actively being tortured for primordial secrets to be handed over to the gods. To this end, Makorynites understand their role is to seek out those with secrets and discover them.
Rituals & Observances
Like all the gods worshipped in the Theocracy, Makoryn is given a slew of feast days in which the Theocracy focuses lavish praise and worship on the Iron Lord's gifts to the world. Such rituals are attended but not performed by Makorynite priests. Like many priesthoods in the Theocracy, the churches of Makoryn have priests but no congregants, since technically no single god has congregants.
The priesthood of the Inquisition has extensive rites and rituals for its priests on a personal basis, including their most sacred Rite of Discernment (as they refer to torture sessions), rites of cleansing after the Rite of Discernment, and ascetic rituals intended to strengthen and empower the priests as they carry out their missions.
The head of the Almanni Inquisition is one of the Lords Holy, eighteen high priests and priestesses who form a political body without equal in Almanni. The Lord Inquisitor is a feared figure, clad in black vestments and an iron mask bolted to his skull. Like the other Lords Holy, the Lord Inquisitor dwells in the deepest parts of the Ancient Tabernacle, the temple structure the size of a town in the center of the nation's capital, Almanni City.
Beneath the Lord Inquisitor are the order's Watchful Bishops, who act as organizational heads for the sect's Inquisitors. Their equal in the structure are the Black Abbots, ascetic masters who run the sequestered monasteries where Inquisitors are trained. The reason for this division is simple: men often come to admire those who train them. Thus, Inquisitors are trained in their skills by those who never see or influence the world outside their monasteries.
Finally, the individual priests of the sect are simply referred to as Inquisitors, though elders among them may be Father or Mother Inquisitors. This title, while intended as an honor, is something of a punishment - it is given only to those whose service as an Inquisitor is established and permanent. They are under no consideration for a role as either a Watchful Bishop or Black Abbot.
The Almanni Inquisition forbids the establishment of any ecclesiastic orders and considers the veneration of saints as heresy.