Church of Excalbia
|Church of Excalbia|
Christianity in the Excalbian Isles
Christianity was first introduced to the Excalbian Isles in the 12th century by Irish monks who established a small number of monasteries along the Eastern coast. The oldest and most famous was the Monastery of Saint Columba near the Lowland settlement of Umbra in the Grand Duchy of Saxmere, now one of the sovereign states of the Confederation of Soveriegn States.
While the monks had some success converting the Lowland tribes along the rugged Eastern coast, Christianity did not spread to the Highland kingdoms until 1798, when a small group of Baptist missionaries from Virginia in North America landed on the Western coast. The Baptists quickly won many converts among the Lowland tribes in the Southwestern region of the island.
The newly Christianized Lowlanders quickly formed an alliance that challenged the dominance of the Highland Kingdom of the Upper Lands of Excalbia. The conflict threatened to explode into open warfare, until the Highland King Ragarth traveled to the missionary settlement of Landing to make peace with the Lowlanders in 1807.
While in Landing, the King's son converted to Christianity and adopted the name Joshua. Prince Joshua married the daughter of a missionary in 1808 and succeeded his father as King in 1809. On Christmas Day in 1809, Emperor Joshua I proclaimed the Holy Empire of Excalbia and proclaimed Christianity the state religion.
Founding of the Church of Excalbia
In 1810 the Emperor decided that the state religion need a formal structure. After a series of meetings with various missionary leaders, Emperor Joshua selected the Rev. Nathan Fitzhugh, one of a small number of Methodists who had joined the Baptist missionaries in 1801 and a former Anglican bishop, as the first Presiding Bishop of the Church of Excalbia. The selection of Rev. Fitzhugh as Presiding Bishop was key to the new Church's legitimacy. As a former Anglican bishop, Rev. Fitzhugh was able to ordain priests and bishops for the new Church.
While many of the Baptists living in the Holy Empire joined the new church, a significant number refused to join the official church, citing traditional Baptist beliefs in the seperation of Church and State. Today, Baptists remain a significant minority in the Holy Empire.
After the establishment of the Church of Excalbia, the Imperial Government constructed several major cathedrals and churches across Excalbia and particularly in the captial, Citadel Excalbia. Excalbia Cathedral was built at the foot of Citadel Mount near the capital's administrative center as the See of the Church of Excalbia.
Many of the core beliefs of the Church of Excalbia are derived from its Baptist roots. Those core beliefs include an emphasis on salvation by grace, the individual responsibility of believers, evangelism and the importance of the Bible.
Religious Leaders in the Excalbian Isles
Presiding Bishop of the Church of Excalbia: Bishop Donald Slesers
Secretary of the Synod of the Church of Excalbia: Bishop Blaine Repse
Chief Bishop of Citadel Excalbia: Bishop Graham Spelve
Chief Bishop of Landing: Bishop Dainis Nilson
Chief Bishop of the Church of Excalbia in the Confederation: Bishop Aigars Ormann
Chief Bishop of the Church of Excalbia in Upper Virginia: Bishop Welford Lloyd
Catholic Archbishop of Citadel Excalbia: John Cardinal Friesz
Catholic Archbishop of Landing: Miguel Cardinal Rizo
Former Archbishop of Landing: Matthew Cardinal Walsh, President of the Pontifical Council on Christian Unity
Catholic Archbishop of Cambera: Gregory Cardinal Thrain
Catholic Bishop of Umbra: Bishop Patrick Kiernan
Catholic Bishop of Cesis: Bishop Peter Riekstins
Catholic Bishop of Courtland: Bishop Yanis Uvaras
Chief Rabbi of Excalbia: Rabbi Daniel Lippmann