Other Christian Faiths

Aside from the Church of England the only other officially tolerated religion in Albion is that of the Jews. This is an era of religious tumult however, and many other Christian sects operate in Albion despite the persecution of the State. Catholicism remains strong in Ireland and the Puritan faiths in the Highlands of Scotland.


Until 1517, Catholicism effectively was Christianity for the vast majority of Europe. With the Protestant Reformation came a great weakening in the power of the Church and the Holy Roman Emperor; many Kings and Princes renounced the Catholic Church and across large swathes of Northern Europe new Protestant faiths became the official church. The German states were torn apart by religious wars for a century.

King Henry VIII brought the Protestant faith to England, and his daughter Elizabeth in her long-reign rooted it deep in the life of the land. She sapped the strength of the Catholics and zealous Puritans with recusancy fines and her careful political manoeuvres. Her son Henry IX took a more relaxed view and brought those who did not grant him the status of head of the church, Catholic and Puritans alike, into his Court and under his rule the recusancy laws were relaxed. Unfortunately the Catholics took this as a sign of weakness. Things came to a head with the Catholic uprising and murder of King Henry IX in 1607.

After this date, Catholicism in Albion is almost non-existent outside the wilds of Ireland. For Catholics to openly practice their faith, they must swear loyalty to the King above the Pope. The Pope, in turn, requires that any practicing Catholic swear allegiance to him rather than any monarch. As such, the vast majority of Catholics have left for Spain, Ireland or the New World. The few who remain do so either as foreign emissaries, or secretly as members of the Order of Arundel.

Puritans too must swear their loyalty to the King, and for different reasons they are no happier. Many believe oaths in the name of God are wrong, others that no-one should place secular power on the level of the throne of Heaven. Nonetheless many more are willing and Puritans can appear in public with care and have been known to attend Court.


The Pope

In 1612, an accident with a Paschal Candle inadvertently revealed that the then Pope had been dead for the best part of his reign, apparently being kept moving by some form of spirit. The resulting chaos within the church lasted several years, as cardinals blamed each other, themselves and, most often, Rosicrucians. Lay churches, in the meantime, were left almost entirely without guidance.

Pope Pius VI, born Antonio Sfondrati, was finally elected in 1619, and immediately took control of much of the work previously left to cardinals. Thus far, his reign has been marked with a much stronger stance against anything deemed unholy, particularly magic. Excepting Theurgy, the practice of magic is now forbidden to all Catholics. Sorcery in particular is detestable, being the school blamed for animating Pope Leo XI, and consequently just about everything else that has gone wrong for the church in the past few decades.

Playing a Catholic

If you are a subject of Albion and a known Catholic, then to attend the Royal Court you will have had to swear an oath placing the King above the Pope. This is a mortal sin in the eyes of the Church, and will place you outside the communion of the Church. Known Catholics are still extremely unpopular in Albion and Catholic characters are likely to be met with sneers, at a minimum, in their public dealings. An easier option is to be a foreigner, perhaps a trader or member of one of the embassies, who will be exempt from the laws and who will be met with considerably less hostility.

It is also possible to be a secret Catholic, although the Holy Roman Church does not allow its members to take false communion, many of its followers view it as the lesser evil. (The richer members sometimes keep their own priests in secret to confess to.) Special dispensation is granted by the Pope to the soldiers of God, the Jesuits and in particular in England the Order of Arundel, and they still instil fear in the enemies of the One Church.

Nobles from Ireland are almost invariably suspected of being secret Catholics entirely independent of their devotion to any faith.


Puritans are grouped together as one religious group, but in reality there are many different sects that make up the Puritan body. These rarely believe in the same things, though most are pretty secure in the belief in their own moral superiority and the need to preach morality to the corrupt and decadent world. This is often reinforced with a belief that those who fail to see the self-evident rightness of the sect’s views need further education atop a bonfire with the other servants of the anti-Christ.

Although not hated as much as the now banished Catholics, since the Civil War the people of Albion now tend to take a dim view of those who reject one of the loyal faiths (Anglican or Jewish).


Common beliefs include: the need to remove any sort of church structure, leaving only lay preachers to deliver sermons and the sacrament of the Lord's Supper. That the world is extremely sinful and that most human activities are sinful, a particular favourite is anything vaguely associated with sex and/or consumption of alcohol. They are however very supportive of women in all positions of the world. The Puritans are well aware that two Queens have been chiefly responsible for the destruction of the hated Catholic faith in Albion.

Puritans and Magic

Puritans abhorr the use of magic, believing any use of such arts to come directly from Satan. They see magics as harmful to the soul itself or both the practicioner and those around him. In their view the users of magic cannot be tolerated and must repent of their sins, primarily of blasphemy since the use of magic is usurping God's place as the omnipotent force of the universe.

Puritans have been known to find sorcerers in the middle of summoning rituals and attempt to disrupt those. On more than on occasion this has resulted in Puritan individuals testing their faith against demons and subsequently entering into paradise. Other Puritans usually conclude that they were unworthy and move onto the next sorcerer to disrupt.


Puritanism has declined steeply in what was once England though there are still a few centres of various forms of the faith. While common nowhere the largest sects tend to be in the Southeast, and particularly on the islands around sunken London, where the evidence of God’s wrath is most evident and the idea that the present is a fallen age is strongest.

Puritanism is however the dominant faith in the Highlands of Scotland and on the Belfast Bridge in Ireland. There the Anglican faith is viewed as part of the hated English occupation and only the sternest and most righteous of its priests are treated with something resembling respect (and with an absent of burning brands in the night). Instead the people gather in one another’s homes on the Sabbath to pray without ministers.

Playing a Puritan

If you are to play a Puritan, you should really have an appropriate name to inspire the fear of God into the unclean and unworthy at court. If you don’t possess a Scottish or Northern Irish accent of your own you may want to acquire one! It will also be a good idea to have a good sermon ready for some preaching when the place clearly descends into sin and immorality (e.g. having a glass of wine, a woman touching a man, the Archbishop sneezing) so that you may turn them into true believers.

More important is to decide how you are able to attend the Court. It is possible for a rich man to keep paying the recusancy fees. But rich and poor alike will need to decide whether they are willing to give their oath to the King. Secret Puritans are rare; their fellows in the faith will certainly reject them.

Puritan Names

Puritans like good, Christian names, these include:

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other_christians.txt · Last modified: 2007/10/04 09:04 by ivan