Children of the Empire,
Welcome once more to a service within the ever comforting walls of The High Church. My name is Callixtus. You may have seen some of the advertising for today's event. A bold, harrowing picture of someone bound in chains. "You too can find Justice in God!" it proclaimed. I am speaking here today to show you exactly why that is the case.
As you are all aware, The Third Virtue is Justice. The traditional recitation of which being the following. "We must reward those who behave rightly and punish those who do not." This recitation raises several questions that I shall seek to answer today. What is the Reward for those who behave rightly? , What is the Punishment for those that do not?, And who is the 'We' to which the recitation references?.
To answer those questions we must first look at Justice and the context at which it's Virtue sits in the order of things. Justice follows Propriety which speaks to tradition. To the upholding of the values that society expects of us, and the following of already established behaviour. To this end Justice further clarifies. We must remain content in the station in which we are born into, it was the Justice of God that selected our role in life. Following Justice is Fortitude, meaning if the Justice of God selects our station to be one which has a hard and arduous path we must endure it. To not seek out higher stations, but to be content with our lot in life. Do not despair however children, Justice speaks of more than just tradition and endurance. It also provides us with a reassurance. What is this?
As you know the first five Virtues mirror the last five. The Mirror of Justice is the 8th Virtue, Charity. We must not seek to rise above our station but the Virtue of Charity ensures to us that we shall not fall below it either. Our place in life is sacred and secure. If you suffer loss, all you who suffer tragedy and sorrow, do not give up your Hope! Show fortitude in the face of trials and the Virtue of Charity will be bestowed upon you. God will never allow you to face more than you can endure. You will always be raised to the station which you are supposed to hold.
So to answer two of our initial question, to answer most simply when relating to Justice your good or bad behaviour is remaining within your station. But Callixtus, I hear you ask. 'What of Justice in the legal sense? What of Imperial Law?' and my children you would be right to ask such things. To answer this we must look at a time before the houses. Before we had House Crux and their imperial mandate to uphold the law. Turn with me please to one of the oldest sections of the sacred texts, in the words of Ancient Exarch Melophsis who states "An eye for an eye, that is Justice.". Now bear that in mind this passage as we also look to the words of an Ancient Emperor Hasaeus who stated "Return evil for evil to nobody, keep conquering the evil with the good; for this is Justice that there be an equalizing amongst you"
To the casual observer, these two statements might seem contradictory! How could one return eye for an eye and also not return evil? To clarify we must let the sacred texts explain each other. Look again to the words of both Melophsis and Hasaeus who stated hundreds of years apart "For Justice belongs to God. They are a God of Vengeance and of Gifts. They will not allow the faithful face injustice more than they can face with Fortitude.". We can clearly see that both statements can exist in harmony. One speaks of a time when God had no system in place to dispense Justice, and One speaks of a time when God had emplaced his Emperor to do it for the people. Therefore if you are in a situation outside of the Imperial reach it is Holy for you to return eye for an eye. However if at all possible you must allow the Justice God has placed in this sector in the form of House Crux to enact the appropriate form of Justice for you. Do not take it into your own hands, for Justice belongs to God.
And to answer the final question. Who is the 'we' that the traditional recitation references? Well by now that is quite simple. It is for all faithful adherents to unknowingly reward and punish those who stray above or below their station, to reward and punish those who both follow closely and break Imperial law. We all must play our part in Justice, for it is interconnected between all beings.
Thank you for taking the time to listen to my Sermon today Children.
Ten Blessings upon you.