It's not Halloween, it's Reformation Day
Also, no more phylacteries in Pathfinder
This week’s edition of Modern Relics is very ~~~spoookyyyyy~~~ I hope you are ok with jump scares because I never am!
Also, here’s your reminder to join the Modern Relics Discord if you haven’t done so already! Conversation picks up around the publication of each newsletter, but you’re always welcome to start a conversation between editions.
Also there was wayyy too much stuff to fit in this edition, so I’m going to pop some of the stuff that got cut in the relevant channels over the next week.
Happy Reformation Day!!
A funny joke everyone enjoys is when you pretend to be celebrating Reformation Day instead of Halloween.
Except I think one of my Catholic colleagues may have taken me a bit too seriously. Sorry! I actually feel a bit weird about Reformation Day because I’m a Uniting Church guy and we believe in Christian unity! Anyway, on Reformation Day some friends and I got together to watch some scary movies, because there’s not thing scarier than schism.
Also, my boyfriend dressed up as a priest and we Young Pope’d him.
Sorry sorry I’m trying to delete it. How about I distract you with some real Halloween posts that are still kind of religious:
What’s going on here
I honestly cannot tell if this is an anti-Catholic parody of Catholicism or a kooky ubertrad Catholic conspiracy group.
Related: Did you know that the heresy of believing Mary is a goddess or part of the Godhead is called Collyridianism?
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The Pope and the President
President Biden was in Rome for the G20 summit. Already in the neighbourhood, he popped in to see the Pope for a chat.
I don’t really have the space to get into it, but according to Biden, the Pope gave him the all-clear to keep receiving communion. The folks over at The Pillar are a little skeptical of the President’s account, but a few days after their meeting, Biden received the sacrament in the Pope’s own diocese.
Marilyn Manson at Sunday Service
Marilyn Manson has been spotted in a prayer circle with Justin Bieber and Ye (formerly known as Kanye West).
It happened at Ye’s Sunday Service, the star-studded Christian service event that’s invite-only so… not a church then?
Marilyn Manson is an honorary priest in San Francisco’s First Church of Satan and once described Christianity as “oppressive” and “fascism”. So it’s a bit of a surprise! Maybe his sudden u-turn is in response to the accusations of abuse by his ex-fiance and several other women.
No more phylacteries in Pathfinder
Tabletop role-playing games were written by people, and sometimes those people had less-than-PC ideas that got written into the games themselves. For example, some fantasy races have inherent traits.
Recently, games like Dungeons and Dragons have taken steps to unpick some of these ideas from the game’s fabric, although the changes haven’t been as radical as some players and former employees would like to see.
This extends to religious stereotypes, including antisemitic ones. Popular D&D podcaster Eric Silver points out several parts of the game he identifies as antisemitic or culturally apropriative.
Now, one of D&D’s rivals, Pathfinder, is making one of those changes. No longer will evil liches keep their souls in “phylacteries” (a word usually used for small boxes containing Torah parchments worn by some Jews during prayer). Instead the lich’s wicked item will be called a “soul cage”.
When you Google “phylactery” you get a mix of Jewish men praying and evil-looking fantasy doodads. Not great! Seems like such a simple change is well and truly overdue and I hope other fantasy games follow suit!
This guy trying to flog Jesus NFTs apparently doesn’t know what that part of Genesis means
Once when I was doing a Bible reading in church I said “monkey cagers” instead of “money changers”. Here’s a guy doing something pretty similar