|Born Again Nation|
|Group type:||Theocratic government|
|Leader Title:||Blessed Father|
|Motto:||With God We Are Born Again|
|Founded by:||Blessed Father Darius Dursley|
|Goals:||Unify the wasteland with religion.|
|Enemies:||Old Lords of New York, East Coast Catholic Church|
After years of wandering the east coast, he settled in Haven. In addition to the Connecticut settlement being relatively safe and open to outsiders, Dursley recalled a verse from the Bible of his youth, from the Book of Revelation. According to passage 3:7–13, “…those who overcome will be made a pillar in the temple of God having the name of God, the name of the city of God, New Jerusalem”. In Haven, there just happened exist an abandoned church called the New Jerusalem Ministries church. Dursley, already believing that he had been brought back to life to serve some kind of divine purpose, saw this as a sign. The ghoul took residence in the abandoned church, and because it was located in a zone outside of the city proper that was still contaminated by high levels of radiation, he was left alone. In his new home, Dursley spent most of his time praying, trying to commune with his God, and obsessively studying the scraps of the bible that remained.
While in solitude, Dursley began to believe that he realized what his plan was. Citing the passage 2:18–29 from the Book of Revelation, he came to the conclusion that it was up to believers like him to reclaim the world. “From this church, those who overcome until the end, will be given power over the nations in order to dash them to pieces with the rule of a rod of iron”. When the Blizzard of 2212 hit, and the population of Haven began questioning the leaders of the city, Dursley began evangelizing, railing against the city leadership in impassioned speeches that were part political theater and part religious sermon. The secular leaders of the city were pretenders, he told the people of Haven. He, on the other hand, had died and had been born again, saved from death by his God to rebuild a worthy society, derived from his delusions of grandeur and his interpretation of the bible.
The message gained traction among the people of the city. Not only did it create scapegoats- the current political leadership and those that did not ‘believe’- but also empowered the disenfranchised and gave them the comfort of believing that some magical entity was actively looking out for them, through Dursley. Fearing that he had begun accumulating too many followers, the leaders of Haven attempted to have the ghoul abducted and assassinated in 2216. Joseph Dalton, one of the ruling bureaucrats of Haven, had previously converted to Dursley’s religion and warned the ghoul. When the agents of the city’s government arrived at the New Jerusalem Ministries church, Dursley was surrounded by his followers. He angrily decried what Haven’s leaders had attempted to do, and rallied the men and women protecting him to instead banish the unbelievers from the city. Faced with an angry mob, most of Haven’s leadership fled, leading Dursley in charge of the city. Proclaiming himself Blessed Father of a Born Again Nation, the ghoul installed a theocratic government in Haven.
Over the next few years, the Blessed Father went about converting the city of Haven and the surrounding environs. Highly militant, he stigmatized those that refused. Non-believers and those that refused to openly pat Dursley and his growing church lip service were harassed, ostracized, and sometimes even killed. It was when he was expanding Born Again Nation’s influence that he encountered for the first time ghouls other than himself. Instead of realizing his own transformation was not because of some kind of magical divine providence but because of the harmful influence of radiation on his own biology and physiology, Dursley rationalized that his God had created an entire group of “born again men” like himself, all of whom were to lead the glorious new kingdom he was building in the name of that God. While most found what Dursley was saying to be crazy talk, many went along with it, simply because what he was offering- leadership in the organization- was too good to pass up.
It was the evangelizing and missions outside to expand Born Again Nation’s sphere of influence that got the church in trouble. In the late 2220s, a group of missionaries were sent east, into the territory of the Old Lords of New York. The nearest Old Lord, Duke Scott Metsband of Peekskill, took offense to the missionaries. He had them captured and executed them, sending their heads back to Haven as a message to not encroach into the territory of the Old Lords. Blessed Father Dursley, smug that he had the power of his God on his side, ignored the threat and sent missionaries back to Upstate New York.
War with the Old Lords of New York
In 2231, Dalton Dursley was assassinated by agents sent by Duke Scott Metsband of Peekskill. After he discovered that the ghoul had sent missionaries back into Peekskill and the surrounding environs, the duke took offense to the outsiders fomenting discontent in his sovereign territory. Joseph Dalton claimed leadership as the Blessed Father of Born Again Nation, but questions immediately arose surrounding the legitimacy of his claims, as he was a human. In order to solidify his status as leader and throw off questions about his legitimacy to lead, he immediately rallied the people of the nation from his pulpit in Haven. While the Duke of Peekskill had attacked Born Again Nation as a matter of personal affront and slight political gain, Born Again Nation began marching on Peekskill in a holy war.
The war between the two sides lasted roughly four years. The fighting mostly took place on the border of eastern Upstate New York and western Connecticut, but agents from Born Again Nation spearheaded a handful of attacks into Old Lords territory as well. In the end, the two sides signed a treaty of mutual non-aggression, shutting down the border the two groups shared and igniting a cold war.
After the war ended, details concerning atrocities committed by the High Inquisitor of Born Again Nation, Julian Reyes, began to emerge. As High Inquisitor, Reyes’ job was to investigate heresy, convert outsiders and recruit them into Born Again Nation, and censure those that did not comply with the laws of the nation. During the war, word began spreading that Reyes had razed entire settlements of unbelievers outside of Born Again Nation to the ground, tortured and summarily executed Old Lords prisoners, among other major crimes. The High Inquisitor was summoned to Haven, was excommunicated by Blessed Father Dalton, and banished from Born Again Nation. The act almost caused civil war in the nation, as some the more conservative elements in the nation, as well as soldiers that fought under his banner disagreed with the act and questioned the legitimacy of Dalton’s rule.
Ultimately, the two factions did not come to blows. The High Inquisitor and those loyal to him took residence somewhere in the Northwest Highlands. The defection sparked changes in the church that would have long-term implications. Most notably, he lifted the mandate requiring friars to be “born again” ghouls, allowing humans into the priesthood. He also granted private ownership to the gunsmiths operating out of the Winchester Arms factory, who would go on to incorporate and form Wild Arms Ltd.
Blessed Father Joseph Dalton died of natural causes in 2261, and was succeeded by Gregory Rivers, the second consecutive human leader of Born Again Nation. The newest Blessed Father has taken a much more interest in domestic issues than either of his predecessors, improving upon the infrastructure of Haven and surrounding settlements and starting various social programs designed to cement the loyalty of his subjects.
There are an estimated 2,000 or so members of Born Again Nation, concentrated primarily in Connecticut and southeastern New York state. Haven is the epicenter of the group, and boasts roughly 1,200 members alone. The Blessed Father is the leader of Born Again Nation and his word is law. He controls the temporal and spiritual matters of the church and the political territory it controls.
On the spiritual side of things, friars are the lifeblood of Born Again Nation. These men and women that learn from the Blessed Father himself in Haven and spread his message. As dictated in Revelation 3:1–6, friars wear white robes, and as mentioned in Revelation 2:18–29, they wear a morning star as both a symbol and as a weapon. Initially, Blessed Father Darius Dursley required friars to be ghouls, but the mandate was lifted by Blessed Father Joseph Dalton. Other humans being in the ministry would also strengthen Dalton’s status as a Blessed Father, given that he himself was also a normal human.
On the political side of things, bureaucrats to govern the mundane day-to-day affairs of different settlements in the Blessed Father’s name. In Haven and the larger settlements in the area, these bureaucrats are appointed directly by the Blessed Father, while in smaller settlements, friars appoint these men and women.
Activites & Interests
Born Again Nation and the Old Lords of New York are currently engaged in a cold war.