Matthias’ Vale Regional Conference Talk

On April 5th, Year 6 in the Vale, Matthias offered his address the gathered peoples of the Vale:

Brothers and sisters of the Vale, welcome to the Eleventh Semiannual Regional Conference of Vale. After my remarks, new arrivals through the portal from Enoch will share messages from the Presidency, twelve, and seventy of the mother Church of Jesus Christ in that land. I therefore will focus my message on needs particular to us in this land apart from the main body of the Saints. Here in the land we call Haven, there are powers and influences and dangers that cannot be imagined in our mother land, and I am charged with preparing your minds and your spirits to be strong and persist in this strange land.

I intend to speak with boldness—at the risk of offending those Gnomes, Satyrs, Nekolyns, Orcs, Goblins, Lizardfolk, and Kobolds present—of how the power of the savior and his priesthood is real, while the powers of the gods of are merely illusions of godliness. I pray that those who have heretofore revered these powers can be humble enough to embrace the true power of salvation that comes with the name of Christ and be no more enticed by illusion.

Our gnomish brethren, who indeed worship in the name of Christ, find themselves lacking the power his name should invoke, for they have lost the priesthood and much of the simple and sacred points of doctrine they once possessed. They worship to the best of their knowledge and with great zeal and receive some blessings for their faith, but in absence of perfect light find themselves turning to their old ways, revering alchemical and other knowledge at the expense of reverence for God.

Behold, this learning and skill is good, if they hearken to the counsels of God, but if they set aside the counsels of God, supposing they know of themselves, then their wisdom is foolishness. I invite our Christian brothers and those leaders of their government and church to embrace a restoration of priesthood authority, receiving our missionaries, having orthodoxy restored to their teachings, being baptized by true authority, and receiving priesthood keys from a living and effectual priesthood line. We do not intend to subvert their authority to govern by this conversion, only to restore to our friends the powers of salvation they have long desired.

To the people of the Vale concerning the gnomish Christian rites, I have received reports that they are exercising the sacrament and sacred temple rituals without authority and to full congregations not qualified to receive them. I ask members of the Church of Jesus Christ to no longer partake in these altered rites, for they make a mockery of sacred things and we cannot knowingly condone this behavior.

Concerning the our welcoming and generous Satyr brethren to the West, their focus on physical pleasure and enjoyment distracts from eternal potential and destiny that is the right of every intelligent creature. While we seek to share in their joy and bring them the joy of the Gospel, I admonish the membership of the church to be careful in joining in their frivolity. Do not drink to excess with them. Do not think that pleasure is the same as the eternal joy we seek.

Concerning the Nekolyn traditions of nature worship, they have found a bond with divinity through God’s beautiful and plentiful creations. Though faithfulness to what knowledge they have allows the Nekolyns some power over the plants and great ability in the land, surely this power cannot be mistaken for the full power of God. While the lumberjacks of Kite have been told to respect the Nekolyn’s sacred groves in the area and not to harm them, there should be no mistake that the trees there worshiped are worthy of such reverence. These are not temples or even chapels. The authority-less dedications the Nekolyns have made of them are a lesser form of worship that what is available in the houses of the Lord where the Saints gather.

Of the Schek, as they are called by the orcs and goblins, we have seen power that cannot be denied. A shrine to the south of our very lands has demonstrated the power to create storms and summon creatures of ice. This does not seem to be mere magic, nor does it seem to be godly power. The Union of Schek have been generous in teaching of their doctrine and history in our land, and I am brought to understand that they believe their divine powers come from massive, though I take it mortal, beings they call the Nefil. Certain of them, it seems, left behind sources of power, whether technological, alchemical, or magical, which the Schek call upon by the names of their creators: Garim, Degrik, and many others. It will be shown that this power is limited, it is comprehensible, and it is lesser to that unlimited, unfathomable, and great power of God. There will come a day when our adventurers understand the origins of these powers. They may prove useful, but my people, do not mistake them for the powers of a god.

The lizardfolk and kobolds, both of the Dragon Empire and otherwise, worship very real powers: Dragons. Long lived and powerful, these dragons are yet mortal beings and they should not be mistaken for gods either, though their teachings do bring powerful knowledge to their acolytes. Let it be known, however, that there is no dragon so mighty that the power of God could not strike it down if it were his will. Yes, even the great dragon living North of Kite. He is not a god, he is a powerful creature who fashions himself one. If the saints have faith, no dragon can threaten their mission.

Members of the Church of Jesus Christ, we must not be led astray by the many unusual powers present in this new world. The five years we have been here seem a lifetime already, but we must remember that we are rooted in the perfect gospel and the divine authority of the church in Enoch, where apostles and prophets receive revelation to send us new support. I know that the Lord watches over our mission. He speaks to me to guide this people. We must bring with us the gospel where we go, not be brought away from it as we go.

These things I testify in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

The first new settlers of the year arrived through the portal bearing addresses from the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve in Enoch.

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