In Gehennum the priesthood is not a career, but the last phase of a career of public service. (See Four Lives.) Further, a priest is not a servant of the divine, but agent of the people, he does not represent the divine to the people, but the people to daimons (and, less commonly, to fiends, dragons, and oneiroi).

Generally, a priest is a man between sixty and eighty years old, at least one of whose children has brought a son into the world, and who has served as a warrior and magistrate earlier in his career. His duties involve maintaining the temple or shrine of which he is priest, offering prayers and making sacrifices on behalf of the people in public ceremonies, and in general keeping the community in a daimon's good books. He may be asked to officiate at private ceremonies, but would expect gifts in exchange for his efforts if he did.

A priesthood is a public office. Some priesthoods are annual, but most are held until retirement. Some are elective, some are appointments in the gift of the civil authorities, or of nobles exercising feudal privileges. At some temples and sanctuaries there are several priests, perhaps even a whole college of them with an internal hierarchy, in which case the members may elect outside candidates to fill vacancies in their ranks.
Priests do not routinely have any supernatural or spiritual powers, but sometimes enjoy the favour of the daimons to whom they minister. The daimonss are often just as prone to do personal favours for the priests as public favours for their parishioners. (see favourite.)

See hierarkh.

Copyright © 1991 by Brett Evill. All rights reserved.