Dwarves and Orcs
Principles of the Faith
Aedonites believe that God’s will was revealed in the teachings of Usires Aedon, who was executed by the Imperator Crexis and nailed to the tree. Through his suffering Usires provided a path to the salvation of Heaven for all souls. The goal of the faith is to bring all to the glory offered by God almighty through the path opened by Usires Aedon, uniting the planes of Earth and Heaven.
Aedonites officially consider every faith which isn’t Aedonism to be Devil-Worship. But in practice, most Aedonites understand there are a variety of faiths practiced, and they aren’t usefully grouped together. The danger presented by a known devil-worshipper is distinctly different than dealing with a gnome.
Organization of the Faith
The utmost authority in Aedonism is held by the Primate, whose authority was bestowed by Aedon Usires himself on Petrus is his foremost disciple. The current Primate is Benito of Tusculum. He runs the church on the far western side of the Holy Alamannian empire, and has historically been as powerful a figure in the empire as the Emperor himself.
Organizing the church locally are bishops, conducting the affairs of the church itself, and ensuring local orthodoxy and distribution of resources. Bishops are traditionally assigned a city or region, and are appointed by/answer to a nearby archbishop.
See more at Bishops of Alba for local organization within the setting
The Aedonites take it upon themselves to provide for literacy and education, viewing the ability to read scripture as a sacred virtue, and essential task for all good Aedonites in their practice of faith. So Bishops will usually operate a local school, or professional college. Bishops will also be responsible for administration of the usual communal charitable trappings (a hostel, alms distribution, healing services, etc.) and a series of priests and monks to help them provide all these services.
In addition each bishop holds a cathedral, the highest temple of their see, and will usually also control a bishops palace, which will be well fortified and serve as their administrative hub. They are usually a rival local authority to the local nobility, and a significant political player. They have access to funds, arms, staff, popular support, and the trappings of authority.
Communities without a bishop will usually have a shrine or temple. A bishop will dispatch itinerant priests to these shrines, to provide religious services for locals. The bishop will also support religious communities of monks and nuns devoted to prayer, and in Alba industry, who in turn support the Bishop and church’s local authority.
Monastaries are run by an Abbott or Abbess, and will be a significant local institution in their area.
Magic and the Faith
Aedonites wielding magic are considered special emissaries of Aedon Usires, and are uncommon. They may be known as “blessed” or “venerable” while they are alive. Upon death, they will usually be sainted, and it’s believed their soul ascends to heaven. However, as proof of their special relationship with Aedon Usires, their mortal remains and special objects in their possession become relics, capable of bestowing those same holy magical powers which they wielded during their mortal life.
As such the bodies of these holy people are considered quite valuable, and more than a few saints are recorded as having been butchered and assassinated, but whose relics are now conveniently widespread and accessible. Saints relics do not appear to require special faith to use, and as such are valuable to Aedonites and non-Aedonites alike.