|Power Center:||Religious Council|
|Image by Nicole Jekich|
“The City of Spires”
The Churches which hold a major position within the Pantheic College, and their respective Parishes are as follows:
The autonomous city of Panthium is one of the largest cities in the Westerlands. Located along the Southern coast of Pais’suria, Panthium is one of the most important religious sites in all the realms.
The city is dominated by the great Basilica, the central forum for interfaith dialogue among the “civilized” faiths in the Westerlands. Each church that participates in the Pantheic College, has a delegation based in one of the city’s 12 major spires. While most of the faiths have primary temples and holy sites located elsewhere in the realms, the Spires of Panthium are important religious sites for all participating churches.
Panthium is one of the oldest cities in the Westerlands. The region it occupies was originally believed to have been settled during the time of the Gnossian empire, and the Great Basilica was built atop the ruins of a great Gnossian complex.
Legend has it that Panthium is located on the site where the bond between Creator and Creation shattered during cataclysm that formed the planes of the multiverse and the Pantheon of known deities which coalesced from the shattered spirit of the one Creator.
Panthium remains a nexus of powerful divine magic and planar energies. The barriers between the Planes are less distinct within the region, allowing extraplanar energies to mingle and flow across and adding to the city’s reputation as a site of divine and arcane import.
Panthium is one of the largest cities in the realms, boasting a population of around 50,000 individuals at any given time. Of course, a constant migration of pilgrims to and from the holy city causes this number to fluctuate greatly.
The city is divided into two wards. The outer ward, known as the commons is a fluctuating mass of commonfolk and travelers who are drawn to the city for any number of reasons. The commons are hectic, diverse and loosely organized, both in terms of physical layout and governance.
By contrast, Panthium’s inner ward is highly structured. The Inner Ward is divided into a number of sectors, known as parishes, which radiate outward from the Great Basilica. Each parish is controlled by one of the collegiate churches which occupies a spire dedicated to that faith. Each church is in charge of governing their own Parish and so each parish generally reflects the values and qualities of its governing church, making for a varied tapestry of cultures and environments across the city.
The Basilica itself sits on a small island along the Southern edge of the city. It is overseen by the Church of St. Cuthbert, which acts as a sort of steward of those parts of the holy city not directly under the control of the Collegiate Churches. The God of Justice and Retribution is considered both above and outside the deliberations of the College, and remains neutral in most matters, only rendering judgement when an agreement cannot be reached by the College’s other members.
The Church of St. Cuthbert has also established a Court of the Commons in the city’s outer ward. This court is in charge of dispute resolution in the outer city, though individual churches also assist with law enforcement by patrolling the areas of the Commons near their Parish.
The Collegiate Churches consist of those faiths dedicated to deities who are not averse to civilization or cooperation to some degree. While some Collegiate Deities (e.g. Ehlonna) do not typically establish themselves in an urban environment, and others (e.g. Kord) usually do not subscribe to a particular heirarchy, all of those involved in the College recognize that interfaith communication and cooperation are sometimes necessary or even desirable. Deities that exhibit a greater degree of chaos and/or aversion to civilization, such as Obad Hai, Erythnuul and Gruumsh are not included in the city’s structure, though the College asserts that their representatives would be welcome, should they desire to engage with the College.
Each Church independently governs its respective parish according to it’s own laws and customs. The result is a diverse urban landscape which caters to almost every kind of person, and in which almost any sort of goods or knowledge can be acquired, if one knows where to look.
In addition to the major Collegiate Churches, many of the racial faiths also have embassies within Panthium’s walls. These embassies are usually located within the Parish of a like-minded Collegiate Church (e.g. Correllon has an embassy in the Ehlonnic district, while Yondalla’s embassy is located in the Olidamarri Parish).
There is also rumored to be a 13th Spire dedicated to Nerull, which is said to extend deep into the ground below the city. The entrance to such a tower, if one exists, has been lost to time. The most prevalent rumors suggest that the entrance is either somewhere in the Vecnan Parish, or in the sector governed by the church of Wee Jas.