Campaign of the Month: October 2017
Blood & Bourbon
Lancea et Sanctum Structure
◄ 5. Lancea et Sanctum Structure
Although the Bourbon and Hardline Sanctified may oppose one another politically, Kindred of both factions belong to the same nominal covenant and adhere to the same organizational structure.
Divisions of Faith
The laity are the rank and file members of the Lancea et Sanctum, comparable to the congregants of a mortal church. They are the covenant’s most common members and have the fewest formal duties. Although they can perform valuable functions for the Church Eternal, they will always be less than its clergy, in much the same manner that an associate in the Mafia or an enlisted soldier in the military will always be less than a made man or a commissioned officer. Still, a century-old lay ancilla can command significant knowledge and power within the covenant. Only fools underestimate the laity.
Deacons are technically lay members of the Sanctified who may perform a number of functions in assistive capacity to priests, or in place of a priest when one is not present (e.g., taking confession). Lay Sanctified look up to deacons as intermediary leaders within the covenant. Almost all Sanctified who become priests spend a period of time as deacons, although not all deacons go on to become priests. Virtually all elders within the covenant who do not join the clergy are deacons.
Priests are the backbone of the Lancea et Sanctum in any city. They are empowered to perform the ritae during Midnight Masses, grant absolution for confessed sins, learn theban sorcery (deacons may typically only do this with special permission), and not least of all, provide spiritual guidance and direction to the laity. While most Sanctified are not priests, most of the covenant’s leaders are. Priests are ordained by bishops. The Sanctified ordain female as well as male clergy, although this is not as forward-thinking a policy as many neonates initially assume: in the covenant’s eyes, the Kindred are dead and damned things unable to perform the essential functions of a man or woman, and so are no longer truly male or female.
A bishop is the spiritual leader of the Lancea et Sanctum in a city, serving in much the same role as a bishop in the Catholic Church. Some cities may have more than one bishop (known as a synod), but this is rare. A bishop who is also the prince of their city is known as an archbishop. Bishops are appointed (through a ceremony known as consecration) by cardinals.
Cardinals are bishops who oversee Sanctified interests across large geographic regions, such as a significant nation in Europe (e.g., France, Germany) or a collection of American states. Cardinals who also rule a city as prince often adopt the title of primate, although most are too occupied by their duties to the covenant to assume a prince’s additional responsibilities. All of the Sanctified cardinals across the world form a body known as the Crimson Curia. The Curia convenes councils on an as-needed basis to decide issues of faith and collectively steer the covenant’s direction.
Even devils have idols. The Black Saints are patrons of individual sins (cowardice, heresy, suicide, infanticide, usury, etc.) whom the Sanctified revere as paragons of their faith and pray to for guidance and intercession. Much like how mortal saints are presupposed to have entered Heaven, the Black Saints are guaranteed absolution after the Second Coming for having so perfectly fulfilled God’s will. Unlike mortal saints, who are canonized posthumously, Black Saints can be canonized while still “alive:” after all, the Kindred are immortal. Still-extant Black Saints enjoy a similar privilege to papal infallibility and their every word and deed is considered unchallangeable. To contradict one is blasphemy. Most Black Saints withdraw into secluded unlives of prayer and contemplation, but a few hold political office within the covenant. Cardinal-Saint Fabrizio Ulfilfa, the cardinal of Italy and patron saint of heresy, is one of the best-known Black Saints. The still-extant Black Saints form a body known as the Council of Thebes. The most revered of the Black Saints are the Dark Apostles, the original followers of Longinus’ first disciple, the Monachus.
Hardline Sanctified by Position
Priests: Gus “Gutterball” Elgin (•••), Elyse Benson (•••), John Marrow (••)
Deacons: Augusto Vidal (•••••), Philip Maldonato (••••), Harlequin (•••), Slane Holland (•••), Gabriel Hurst (••), Deon LaCroix (•)
Laity: Caitlin Meadows (•••), Alexander Wright (••), Yi Huang (••), Charlie Harrison (••), Caroline Malveaux-Devillers (•), Catherine Ward (•), Gina Elsworth (•), Joshua Pacuad (•), June (•), Cleo (•), Warren Kontkowski (0)
Bourbon Sanctified by Position
Deacons: Antoine Savoy (•••••), Harlequin (••)
Laity: Natasha Preston (•••), Peter Lebeaux (•••), Rosa Bale (•••),
Julius B. Baudoin (••)
Arthur Duchamps (•), Jade Kalani (•), King Bolden (•), Ramon Korda (•), Roxandra “Roxy” Adrieux (•), Edward “Ed” Zuric (0), Laura Melton (0), Louis Maddox (0), Mary Allen (0)
None of the Quarter rats hold recognized positions within the Lancea et Sanctum.