Within the church's hierarchy there are some sects dedicated to individual gods. These sects occasionally come to blows when the works of opposing deities conflict with one another. A prime example is the open hostility between worshipers of Nuadun and his brother Azogun.
The church takes a very strong stance against elevating mortals to deific positions and consider shamans and worshipers of "lesser powers" as heretics to the church. The church frequently works in opposition to those worshipers which often leads to bloodshed. The church especially despises the Cult of the One God and views their particular heresy and so heinous that many in the church will not hesitate to slay cult members.
Many within the church dedicate themselves solely to a single god, although it is not uncommon for a priest to offer a prayer to another Empyrean god. For example, a priestess of Materan may pray to the god Lugun to ask for great strength. If one wanted something more specific, like guidence in a particular task they may pray to a saint as well.
Members of the Empyrean church hold graven images of their gods in high regard and there is a large trade of church relics, emblems, statues and charms that bear images of the gods or saints.
The Nine Empyrean Titans
The Church is divided into many tiers, some unique to individual sects.
In the Empyrean Church, the title "Saint" posthumously denotes a person who has been formally canonized, that is, officially and authoritatively declared a saint, by the Church, as the mortal will of a god. Saints are often referenced by a characteristic they were known to show in life. One such saint being Saint Reluse, who was known to be exceptionally tenacious.
A bishop is an experienced priest or cleric who has been tasked with overseeing the clergy of a region.
A cleric is a traveling priest, often tasked or self appointed with bringing their faith into the wider world. They generally play a more active roll in the service of their faith and often take to adventuring. Clerics tend to arm themselves and learn less subtle spells than priests.
A priest is a genral practitioner of the Empyrian faith. Priests work to interpret the will of the church and do not commonly have access to powerful spells.
A deacon is an apprentice priest. They are often young men and women.
The Harvest Brotherhood
The Harvest Brotherhood are an extremely secretive order. Known outwardly as bankers and bureaucrats, the Brotherhood controls food production and storage. The brotherhood provides support to farmers and ranchers in exchange for donations and has close ties to the stormlords who provide adequate rainfall in times of drought. They are generally priests of Materan.
A Hierophant is a priest dedicated to Cernunnun who works with druids to protect sacred sites and help others understand the importance of such locations. Some lead a life of humility as hermits in the wild, attempting to be one with nature. They are generally priests of Cernunnun.
An inquisitor is commonly a militant priest of Azogun who serves to identify and remove heretics and other threats from within. The cult of Azogun once attempted to overthrow the kingdom of Findle but were defeated by the Four Heroes of Findle. They are few in number and dangerous to non believers but are seen as a necessity by the church. They often come to blows with Templars over ideological differences.
Malleus Mendaces - The Hammer of the Liars, an ancient manual for hunting heretics. This tome includes many religious ceremonies dedicated to Azogun and methods of obtaining information through torture and magical means.
The Mystic Theurges
A Mystic Theurge is an experienced priest who specializes in researching powerful magics and interpreting the will of Morrigan. Most Theurges are members of the House of Herat, the ruling body of Herat Isle. Mystic Theurges blend the skills of arcane and divine magic.
A Ravager is a type of priest, dedicated to Lyttas, god of madness. Ravagers do not ascribe to the hierarchy and have only one ceremony; savage murder. Ravagers are universally reviled as worship of Lyttas is a serious offence to the church. Ravagers are often mistaken for wounded priests as they favour white robes, which are better for displaying gore.
The stormlords are priests enamored by the power of natures wrath. Summoning forth powerful storms at sea and on land. These men and women can range from simple rain-callers to demented hermits. Little is known about their organization if there is any, and even less is known about how the knowledge is passed form one to another.
A templar is a cleric or paladin tasked the with protection of Empyrian churches or cathedrals. They often work as agents of the church on "prolonged missions or protection." Shining Blades are a knightly order within the ranks of the Templar in Tus. They once attempted an ill fated coup d'etat against the Steward of Findle after the Monarchy was lost in the fourth age. With the restoration of the theocratic monarchy in the fifth age, king Pahlin Holt and Steinthor Drakeson have reestablished the Shining Blades who now serve as royal bodyguards.