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AllianceChurch of the Holy Light
Cathedral of Light HS
Main leader Unknown
  Formerly IconSmall Benedictus Archbishop Benedictus †
IconSmall Human Male Archbishop Alonsus Faol †
Secondary leaders IconSmall Human Female High Priestess Laurena
IconSmall Human Male Bishop Arthur
IconSmall Human Male Bishop DeLavey
IconSmall Human Female Bishop Lazaril
IconSmall Dwarf Male High Priest Rohan
  Formerly IconSmall Human Male Bishop Farthing †
IconSmall Human Female Bishop Seline
IconSmall HighElf Male High Priest Vandellor †
Race(s) HumanHumanHumanHumanIconSmall HumanThin Human
DwarfDwarfDark Iron dwarfDark Iron dwarf Dwarf
High elfHigh elf High elf[1]
Half-elfHalf-elf Half-elf
GnomeGnome Gnome
DraeneiDraenei Draenei[2]
WorgenWorgen Worgen
Character classes Priest (Cleric - Chaplain - Confessor - Acolyte), Paladin, Inquisitor[3]
Capital Cathedral of Light
Other major settlements Stormwind City, Ironforge, Stromgarde Keep
  Formerly Gilneas City, Silvermoon City, Tyr's Hand, Capital City
Base of operations Northshire Abbey, Hall of Mysteries, The Sanctum, Netherlight Temple
  Formerly Light's Dawn Cathedral, Light's Hope Chapel, Old Monastery
Theater of operations Azeroth, Outland
Language(s) Common, Various other languages
Sub-group(s) Brotherhood of Northshire,
Knights of the Silver Hand
Affiliation Alliance, Conclave, Independent
  Formerly Alliance of Lordaeron, Kingdom of Lordaeron[4]
Status Active

“Dear friends of the Light, you are all welcome here, in this beautiful cathedral that turns none away who come with open hearts and humble spirits.”

— Archbishop Benedictus[5]

The Church of the Holy Light (also called the Church of Light or simply the Church)[6] is the religious institution at the head of the predominant human religion, the worship of the Holy Light.

Founded centuries ago in Lordaeron, the Church spread its faith through the Seven Kingdoms, and constructed temples, shrines, and churches throughout the far-flung human lands as places of worship, with a hierarchy of religious leaders to oversee its devoted followers, as its philosophy and sacred teachings also managed to spread throughout the societies of the high elves, dwarves, and gnomes.

At the time of the Second War, Archbishop Alonsus Faol gave the support of the Church to the Alliance of Lordaeron, as its followers included most of the people from all the human kingdoms combined, and which later brought its help to the populations after the end of the conflict. During the Third War, the Church concentrated its efforts to contain the Plague of Undeath and cure the sick, but was wiped out when Lordaeron was destroyed by the Scourge. Eventually, the clergy reformed itself in the Cathedral of Light of Stormwind City, under the leadership of Archbishop Benedictus and his bishops.

Affiliated with the Alliance, its members are dedicated to creating a world of honor and justice, striving to aid others and be good in all actions. By embodying the tenets of their religion, the Church's skilled clergy can wield holy magic called the Light. Among them, the priests who heal and restore in times of peace, protecting in times of war, and the paladins of the Knights of the Silver Hand, the martial branch who enforce its laws, protecting the weak and vanquishing the evil of the world.



Alonsus Faol Alive

Alonsus Faol, Archbishop of the Church of the Holy Light during the Great Wars.

Sacrifice and courage were among the founding principles of the Church of the Holy Light. The Church traced its origins back more than two thousand years ago, all the way to the chaos of the Troll Wars. A human general, Lordain, selflessly gave his life to hold off an overwhelming force of Amani trolls that threatened to destroy a united human army. One of the people he saved was his sister, a renowned warrior named Mereldar. When the war ended, Mereldar dedicated her life to caring for humanity's wounded veterans. It was she who first spoke to other humans about visions of the Light. In her dreams, Mereldar saw five strange forms not human, thrumming with holy power. They filled her mind with the wisdom of holiness, protection, justice, retribution, and compassion. When she put their wordless teachings into practice, power seemed to flow through her. The patients under her care would see their wounds disappear and their illnesses vanish.

Other human priests also began having faint dreams and visions of angelic beings, geometric forms that thrummed with living light. Mereldar met with them, and together, they codified the radiant wisdom of this higher power into the written word. They did not know it, they had actually managed to commune with the naaru in the Great Dark Beyond, and through this connection, the Holy Light was introduced to the early humans for the first time.[7] Popular among the common folk, the movement flourished and sparked widespread faith in the Holy Light, becoming the predominant human religion.

As the economy of Arathor flourished, the nobles of Strom, seeking lusher lands, purity, and enlightenment, decided to leave the arid surroundings of the imperial capital against the arguments of the royalty. They founded a city-state named Lordaeron after the surrounding region,[8] which became a mecca for religious travelers and all those who sought inner peace and security.[9] Centuries later, Lordaeron's leaders codified the different Light-based traditions and belief systems. From these efforts, the Church of the Holy Light came to be. Lordaeron served as the home of this church and became a popular destination for travelers seeking healing, wisdom, and inner peace. The Church constructed temples and shrines throughout the far-flung human lands, and it created a hierarchy of religious leaders to oversee its followers. The most important places of worship were located in the verdant Eastweald. Among the oldest and most revered of these holy sites were Light's Hope Chapel, Stratholme, Andorhal, and Tyr's Hand.[10]

Over the decades, devout clerics from the emergent Church of the Holy Light had ventured south from Lordaeron to spread their faith. Upon reaching Stromwind, these pious individuals founded the Holy Order of Northshire Clerics. The kingdom looked to these clerics as a source of wisdom and comfort in hard times, while the devout clerics used the powers of the Light to soothe the hearts and minds of Stormwind's citizens, and even helped the army of their kingdom fight through its life. They were known to have also healed gnolls during the Gnoll War and jungle trolls during the Gurubashi War.[11]

The First War[]

WCOnH logo This section concerns content related to Warcraft: Orcs & Humans.
Main article: Holy Order of Northshire Clerics
Northshire Abbey

The Northshire Abbey in Northshire Valley.

During the First War, the priests of the Church known as the Clerics of Northshire were one of the great sources of hope on the battlefield. They risked their lives to heal soldiers wounded in combat, and its members accompany every Stormwind patrol and battalion into the fray, just as they had in wars past. They used their Light-given abilities to fight with the armies against the Orcish Horde, while healing and protecting the wounded and citizens of Stormwind.

However, unlike gnolls and trolls, the orcs ruthlessly targeted every cleric they found, knowing that these healers could return a wounded human to battle. Many clerics died, without armor or weapons they could do nothing against the orc's fury,[10] while their numbers were not great enough to change the outcome of the war, as Stormwind fell to the Horde.[12] After the orcs decimated the kingdom, the surviving clerics and priests fled with Anduin Lothar to Southshore in Lordaeron.[13] At the same time, the High Clerist of Stormwind, Lady Mara Fordragon, became the patron of the refugees of the war who chose to flee to the northern lands of Lordaeron, untouched by the fighting.[14]

The Second War[]

Main article: Knights of the Silver Hand
Chronicle2 Turalyon and the Council of Seven Nations

The priest Turalyon rallies the Council of Seven Nations to form the Alliance of Lordaeron.

Prior to the Second War, Archbishop Alonsus Faol was present at the Council of Seven Nations formed by the Regent Lord of Stormwind, Anduin Lothar, and the king of Lordaeron, Terenas Menethil II, with the intent of convincing the other kingdoms to band together to repel the invading Orcish Horde.[15] The Archbishop was not a king, but a leader in his own right at the head of the Church of the Holy Light revered by humans everywhere, whose followers included most of the people from all the kingdoms combined. Not interested in the control of the army, he played a moderating influence, keeping the kings focused on the fact that the Horde would come whether an army was ready to face them or not, and reminding the monarchs frequently that an army without a single leader was useless no matter its size, before announcing to Anduin Lothar that the Alliance of Lordaeron could count on the support of the Church of the Light for their war. The Church also pledged itself to Stormwind's help, and started gathering funds to rebuild the southern kingdom when the crisis would have passed.[16]

As the human forces amassed for the war, Anduin Lothar was looking for champions to unite all the armies of the human realms under his command. Among them, the armies of Lordaeron were said to be deeply religious.[17] The solution came from the Church of the Holy Light. Seeking to create an order that would suffer less attrition in battle, Alonsus Faol met Anduin Lothar and offered him to create a new order that would represent the best qualities of humanity. An order that would include soldiers gifted not only in wielding the Light, but also in possessing leadership qualities and mastering the arts of traditional warfare, while embodying the qualities of loyalty, bravery, and honor. With Lothar's consent, Alonsus Faol called for a meeting with the Supreme Commander and Khadgar to introduce the followers of the Church that became the first paladins of a new order: the Knights of the Silver Hand. During the months following the start of the war, other knights and priests were also trained by Alonsus Faol to become paladins,[18][19] and thus, some of them led churches instead of devout clerics during the war, gathering inside to minister the masses.[20]

At the same time, Bishop Natalie Seline from Lordaeron began to delve into workings of the orc necrolytes, as she realized that to defeat the green-skinned orcs, humanity would need to study the strange powers they wielded. She closely examined their magics, and she visited battle sites where their dark arts had befouled the land. By the time of the Second War, Natalie Seline had learned how to wield shadow magic from a powerful shadow artifact, and had taught her dangerous arts to other worshipers of the Light to rally them against the Horde. They waged their war in secret, hunting down orcs across the human kingdoms, and despite her noble intentions, Seline became more and more obsessed with the blade and the mysteries of the Void.[21]

The paladins were instrumental in the defeat of the Horde and were the Alliance's best defense against the Horde's death knights. In the aftermath of the Second War, the Alliance set out to rebuild Stormwind, and Archbishop Alonsus Faol was instrumental in reforming the Brotherhood of Northshire.[22] The Silver Hand also coordinated with the Church to help the Alliance move forward. They healed the sick and granted shelter to the survivors broken by the war,[4] as in times of peace, they were present in chapels and cathedrals to treat the wounded and those in need, applying the teachings of Alonsus Faol on the dichotomy of paladins to serve humbly in devastated communities after wars; as they are both warriors and healers.[23]

In Capital City, an unnamed bishop from the Church was responsible for holding services and providing blessings for the House Menethil in their private chapel.[24]

The Third War[]

WC3RoC-logo This section concerns content related to Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos or its expansion The Frozen Throne.
Scarlet Monastery Halls

The Halls of the Old Monastery in Tirisfal Glades.

When the Plague of Undeath made its appearance in Lordaeron and continue to spread, local priests of the Church tried to ease the victims' suffering with holy magic and stop the spread of the disease. However, their efforts were insufficient, as healing salves and potions had little effect, and the light could only treat the infection in its earliest stages.[25]

Despite the high elves' official departure from the Alliance, the altruistic priests of Quel'Thalas refused to abandon their roles as healers and agreed to remain in Lordaeron despite the edicts from their reclusive masters in Silvermoon. The high elven priests used their Light-given powers to heal the wounded and bolster the spirits of Lordaeron's fighting elite.[26] These high elven priests joined with Prince Arthas in investigating the plague with the goal of healing the land of its strange curse.[27]

When Arthas returned to Lordaeron as the champion of the Lich King, his soul cursed by Frostmourne, he began the Scourging of Lordaeron and destroyed the Church's clergy at the same time. Consequently, a group of wretched and heretical priests appeared during the Third War.[28] They once counted as the most devout amongst the Church of the Holy Light. But, after years of constant war and suffering, they had lost their sense of the Holy Light and decided to spread their frustration and negativity to their fellow men and women.[28]

In the meantime, some priests of the Church had joined the Human Expedition and the Kalimdor alliance to fight the Burning Legion, including high elf priests who survived the fall of Quel'Thalas. Following the victory at Mount Hyjal, the Kul Tiras navy deployed Light-wielding chaplains and their elites, under the guidance of a superior officer, to fight the Horde and defend Theramore Isle during the invasion of Durotar.

Some time after the end of the Third War, the Old Monastery in Tirisfal Glades, once a proud bastion of Lordaeron's priesthood and a center for learning and enlightenment, was taken by the newly-created Scarlet Crusade. Among its members were several original priests of Lordaeron, such as Benedictus Voss and Isillien.[29]

World of Warcraft[]

WoW Icon update This section concerns content related to the original World of Warcraft.
Cathedral of Light Cataclysm

The Cathedral of Light in Stormwind City.

Following Faol's death, and the fall of the Church in Lordaeron, Archbishop Benedictus took charge of the Church as its new leader and swore to continue the work his mentor had begun so many years ago.[30] The Cathedral of Light now serves as the main spiritual hub for the Church of Light, and as headquarters for the Knights of the Silver Hand in the city. In order to support the Alliance in its campaigns, and to fight against evil, the Church also called upon adventurers to send them on missions across Azeroth.[31][32][33][34]

As the teachings and philosophies of Light have long since spread to the dwarves of Khaz Modan, their priests and paladins are mainly present in the Hall of Mysteries of Ironforge, a temple that serves as a center of arcane and divine practice and study, with the highest-ranking being High Priest Rohan and Valgar Highforge. In the Petitioner's Chamber of Stormwind Keep, Bishop DeLavey represented the Church at the King's court and handled several affairs.[35] The Church also accepted the presence of Brother Crowley, an ambassador of the Scarlet Crusade.[36]

When they finished teaching everything they know, priest trainers sent their apprentices to High Priestess Laurena who met these new promising priests who have caught the attention of senior members of the Church of Light with their dedication, and who are worthy to continue their training.[37] In the Cathedral of Light, Lord Grayson Shadowbreaker and Duthorian Rall also met new promising paladins of the Silver Hand, giving them tests to make sure they are worthy, before sending them on missions.[38]

As high elves, several blood elves were members of the Church. After the Scourge invasion of Quel'Thalas, many of them believed that the Light had abandoned them in their darkest hour. One of the most prominent followers of this mindset was Lady Liadrin, who renounced her vows to the Light. A disillusioned Liadrin and many of her followers would later use the Light as a tool, forcibly taking it rather than relying on faith to wield it, thus was born the order of the Blood Knights in year 25.[39]

Wrath of the Lich King[]

Wrath-Logo-Small This section concerns content related to Wrath of the Lich King.
Shattrath - Bishop Lazaril Scourge Invasion

A Church camp in Shattrath during the second Scourge Invasion.

During the Scourge Invasion, multiple necropolises appeared in the skies of Azeroth, transmitting communications and other assistance to the Scourge's ground forces.[40] While the Forsaken dealt with curing the plague, the Church of the Holy Light pledged itself to destroy the necropolises.[41] Using the concentration of Light energy from the naaru of Shattrath City and the shared benedictions from its faithful, the Church created holy artifacts able to strike down the flying structures.[42]

When the Scourgewar began, priests of the Church were present among the Alliance troops in their travel to Northrend. Notably Father Levariol in Howling Fjord and Father Michaels in Grizzly Hills, while other priests joined the ranks of Highlord Bolvar Fordragon's army at Angrathar the Wrathgate. A few of them fought against the Blue dragonflight, but they were captured and placed in blocks of ice in the Hall of Stasis of the Nexus. Some of their vicars were also present to protect the Skybreaker during a gunship battle with the Orgrim's Hammer, in Icecrown Citadel.

During the War Against the Nightmare, while the Emerald Nightmare's mist enveloped Stormwind City, noises could be heard from the Cathedral Square, as the still-standing defenders continued to fight off the nightmarish invaders with their spells around the cathedral, making any attempt to cross the district dangerous.[43]

Prior to the Cataclysm, Archbishop Benedictus sent Revil Kost to search for the Cloak of Purity, a powerful artifact that protects its wearer from corrupting influences and allows them to see through illusions, that was stolen by the Dark Riders.[44]


Cataclysm This section concerns content related to Cataclysm.
Stormwind City after the Cataclysm

The Cathedral of Light, in reconstruction after the end of the Cataclysm.

Shortly before the Cataclysm, the Cathedral of Light hosted a ceremony for the deceased soldiers of the war against the Lich King. The ceremony was led by Archbishop Benedictus.[45]

During the Elemental Unrest that heralded the Cataclysm, Benedictus and priests of the Church protected the Cathedral Square from the raging elements. Once they were defeated, the Archbishop announced that the district was under control.

When Deathwing descended on Stormwind to burn parts of the city to the ground, but shortly vanished as quickly as he had appeared, many of Stormwind's fearful citizens sought counsel from Archbishop Benedictus at the Cathedral of Light, as for years, Benedictus' wise guidance had been instrumental in seeing humanity through bleak times. Yet beneath his apparent benevolence, he had pledged himself to his dark masters and the eradication of all life on Azeroth. Unaware that he was secretly a member of the Twilight's Hammer, the Archbishop subtly guided the citizens into the cult's embrace.[46]

In Gilneas, a member of the clergy of the kingdom, Sister Almyra, took care of training Gilnean priests to help them protect themselves against the Bloodfang worgen in the city.[47][48]

Following the Cataclysm, High Priestess Laurena sent promising priests on missions,[49][50] notably to fight the enemies of the Alliance in Blackrock Depths. They had to prevent the influence of the Twilight Hammer over the Dark Iron clan, in order to prevent them from recruiting more into their ranks, by burning the books that the Twilight's Hammer distributes.[51] At the same tie, Lord Grayson Shadowbreaker also sent promising paladins on missions in Blackrock Depths,[52][53] in order to prevent the deaths of allies at the hands of the Dark Iron clan and the Twilight Hammer.[54]

At the end of the war against Deathwing, the fallen Archbishop was finally killed by adventurers in the Chamber of Aspects of Wyrmrest Temple during the beginning of the Hour of Twilight. When they returned to Stormwind after his death and told Bishop Farthing that Benedictus was the Twilight Prophet and betrayed the people of Stormwind, he would not believe it, telling the adventurers that he heard another grim rumor about Bolvar Fordragon and asked them to spread their lies elsewhere.[55]

Mists of Pandaria[]

Mists of Pandaria This section concerns content related to Mists of Pandaria.

During the Purge of Dalaran, a few of their clerics were seen in Dalaran among the soldiers of the Stormwind Army, fighting under Jaina Proudmoore's banner. They were led by Lieutenant Corwin, occasionally confronting the Sunreaver mages present in the city. They were later attacked by an Horde agent sent by Grand Magister Rommath.[56]

Two months following the rediscovery of Pandaria, priests and priestess of the Church were present among the main Alliance forces who established their main bases of operations in Krasarang Wilds: Lion's Landing. During the Alliance assault of Domination Point, the Champion of the Light Disha Fearwarden and a few priests attacked the defenses of the Horde and could be seen resurrecting the fallen soldiers.

Warlords of Draenor[]

Warlords of Draenor This section concerns content related to Warlords of Draenor.

During the war against the Iron Horde, priests from Stormwind joined the ranks of the Alliance forces in alternate Draenor. Among them, Human Priests were attacked in different regions of Draenor by the followers sent from the Frostwall garrison.[57][58] Some could also be met and recruited as followers at the Lunarfall Garrison, in alternate Shadowmoon Valley.

In Ashran, Nozaro was the priest leader of the Alliance at the Stormshield Outpost, while on the battlefield, Stormshield Priests from Ironforge were present to fight against the Horde.


Legion This section concerns content related to Legion.

At the beginning of the third invasion of the Burning Legion, several priests participated in the Battle for Broken Shore alongside the Alliance army, following Varian Wrynn.[59] Some of them could be seen healing the wounded on the Skyfire.

During the Legion invasions, Devoted Battle-Priests and Stormpike Battle-Priests were present at the demonic invasion locations, where they healed and protected the wounded soldiers. They also helped the Alliance adventurers to repel the demons.

Following the battle for Broken Shore, many priests of Alliance races - that would be in the Cathedral of Light - joined the Conclave led by Archbishop Alonsus Faol.[2] They were present in the Netherlight Temple, where they could be seen studying or chatting with priests of other races and factions. When Balnazzar launched his assault on the Netherlight Temple, they could be spotted battling hordes of demons alongside their allies of the Silver Hand.[60]

At the same time, the bishop Farthing left Stormwind City under the pretense of investigating the accusations and rumors regarding Benedictus' ties to the Twilight's Hammer.[61] In truth he was a member of the Twilight's Hammer serving as the hand of Benedictus, and who recently claimed leadership of the remaining Twilight's Hammer.[62][63] Using Xal'atath, an ancient Old God artifact, Farthing intended to resurrect Zakajz in order to restore the Twilight's Hammer to their pinnacle while also cementing his leadership of the cult.[64] However, his efforts were halted by a shadow priest adventurer.[65] He was later replaced by Bishop Arthur at the Cathedral of Light.

During the Assault on Broken Shore, priests of the Church were present to heal and protect their allies of the Armies of Legionfall at Deliverance Point, while battling demons on the Broken Shore.

Following the end of the Argus Campaign, High Priestess Laurena was present at the ceremony at Lion's Rest, where she blessed the troubled King Anduin Wrynn before giving a speech to the gathered crowd, in the same way as the Archbishop Benedictus following the war against the Lich King. Once she was finished, King Anduin continued the speech.[66]

Battle for Azeroth[]

Battle for Azeroth This section concerns content related to Battle for Azeroth.
Wounded Refugees - Cathedral of Light

In the Cathedral of Light, the clergy treated the wounded refugees from the Burning of Teldrassil.

During the Burning of Teldrassil, the priests wandered Stormwind City, doing what they could to tend to the hungry, exhausted, and frightened refugees coming from Darnassus.[67] They were also providing continual blessings to mages of the Wizard's Sanctum that kept the portals open.[68] The human and night elf refugees from Teldrassil were transported to the Cathedral of Light, overflowing it, where they were treated by Stormwind priests and Mia Greymane.

In the beginning of the Fourth War, the Church of the Holy Light mobilized its priests to support the Alliance. During the Battle for Lordaeron, some of their priests were present in the Ruins of Lordaeron, notably the High priest of Stormwind Brother Gareth and Melindra Quarry, caring for wounded soldiers in the Alliance camp at the ruins of Brill.

During the Battle for Stromgarde, a large number of priests and champions of the Church were present in the Arathi Highlands among the armies of the Alliance and Stromgarde. At Valorcall Pass, some Valorcall Faithful healed and protected their allies, while Veteran Priest attacked the Horde troops. There were also some Stromgarde Priests present in the region, indicating that the Church of the Holy Light is once again present in the kingdom after years, with High Priest Altarite Jesse Taylor in charge of the Altar of Kings in the capital as the highest-ranking member of the Church present.

WoW-novel-logo-16x62 This section concerns content related to the Warcraft novels, novellas, or short stories.

Following the war, Mathias Shaw visited the Sanctum of Light where the Knights of the Silver Hand sealed the Book of the Dead, a dangerous artifact that belonged to the dreadlord Balnazzar. The Spymaster made a copy of the runes with ordinary ink, which the Church of the Holy Light put under high magical protection in the Cathedral of Light, in order to be able to recognize the language inside if it were to be seen written elsewhere.[69]


Shadowlands This section concerns content related to Shadowlands.

Following the Fourth War, priest trainers of the Church sent their apprentices to meet Patrice Lancaster in the priest section of the Training Hall, in Stormwind.[70][71] As a representative of the Conclave, she sent promising priests on missions, more particularly to fight the enemies of the Alliance in Blackrock Depths,[72] and at Shadowfang Keep to obtain materials for the creation of weapons at the height of their dedication,[73] as High Priestess Laurena did in the past.

In Exile's Reach, the dwarf ghost Branven Hammerheart helped young priests of the Church to learn the holy spell of Spell holy resurrection [Resurrection], in order to save the souls of the Alliance castaways on the island from being consumed by the necromantic magic of Gor'groth, who attempted to raise the dragon Ravnyr in the Darkmaul Citadel.[74][75]


Tarren Mill church

Interior of a typical human church.

From their tenuous encounters with the naaru, some priests learned to harness the extraordinary healing effects of the Light, and from the teaching in these books, a religious movement formed, founded on the tenets of selflessness, justice, peace, altruistic works, and a belief that the Light dwelled in all things.[7]

When they obtain their steed, members of the Church name them following the tradition of the paladins and priests, inherited from the informal tradition of the knights and nobles of Lordaeron,[76] by a quality they admire.[77]

Their members may use prayer beads,[78] while some of the more fringe elements of the priesthood and the paladinhood use scourges, seeking to cleanse their sins and impurities with these instruments of self-flagellation.[79][80]

Contrary to popular belief, priests and paladins are not subject to the vows of celibacy and chastity. They can freely marry and have children, such as Turalyon or Alexandros Mograine.[81]

Philosophy and belief[]

Through the centuries, the Holy Light became a central part of all civilized human society, as their primary religion and a staple of worship, respect, and honor. Sacrifice and courage were among the founding principles of the Church of the Holy Light,[7] and while this religion is more philosophical than theistic, its practitioners do believe their devotion connects them to a greater and mysterious force in the universe. The general ideology of the Light is to strive to be good in all actions, but also seek to be the best of oneself, and thus continue to make the world a better place. They believe that the Light shines on each and every being of Azeroth.[82] Its teachings are depicted in the Inv misc book 07 [Tome of Valor].

As the martial branch of the Church, the paladins of the Silver Hand embody the qualities of loyalty and honor,[83] while compassion, patience, bravery mean as much to them as strength in battle.[84] Sacrifice is also a key component in what it takes to uphold their duties.[85] Their order was founded on the moral foundation of five core traits, inspired by five holy tomes that were some of the church's most ancient relics. Each libram represented what Archbishop Alonsus Faol saw as a core trait of the Order: retribution, holiness, protection, justice, and compassion.[83]

The clergy teaches its followers to be virtuous in life, but also to beware of dark, unholy and demonic magic, in particular those who practice them: notably the Twilight's Hammer, the Cult of the Damned, the Burning Legion, and the Cult of Forgotten Shadows.[86] They also preach against the Shadow, which the orcs were once strongly perceived to be creatures of,[87] while their priests and paladins are known to condemn their foes with such epitaphs as 'shadowspawn' and 'spawn of darkness'.[88] While not barred from the Cathedral of Light, void elves are not welcomed warmly and are even invited to leave as they are not considered appropriate, while the Lightforged draenei are well received.[89][90]

Blasphemy against the Light has never been shown to be punished by the Church, however, those who utter it attract consequently the animosity of its followers upon them. The undead embody blasphemy towards the life itself and all that is sacred, thus, they are considered to be nothing but body-stealing abominations, and are destroyed by the faithful of the Church in a will of mercy, in order to honor their memory as livings and allow their soul to rest in peace.[91][92][93]

The Three Virtues[]

The philosophy of the Holy Light boils down to the three teachings, called the Three Virtues. These virtues—respect, tenacity, and compassion—are each defined into a principle and a lesson. Acting on these three tenets helps make the world a place everyone can appreciate; a world of honor and justice. These virtues are followed and applied by all members of the Church, but also by those of the Order of the Silver Hand and the Argent Crusade.[94]


Respect is the first virtue taught to those joining the path of the Light. When looking at an enemy, one must look past the hatred that separates. There are qualities to respect and prowess to be acknowledged. Conducting oneself with honor and treating one's opponent as one wishes to be treated shows respect. Respecting one's opponents on the field is acknowledging a connection, which brings one closer to the Light.[94]


Tenacity is the second virtue. This is the virtue of persevering through troubling times and painful experiences. In the face of despair and hatred, one must continue to stand true to their beliefs and fight on.[94]


Compassion is the last step on the path of the Light. In times of rivalries, it is easy to see differences at every turn. The challenge is in looking beyond appearances and understanding the similarities. Through this understanding, one can feel compassion for the losses others have suffered, even if the victim bears another banner. By feeling and understanding compassion in enemy and ally alike, one reaffirms his or her connection with the world.[94]

Missions and activities[]

High Priestess Laurena HS

High Priestess Laurena giving her blessing in Hearthstone.

The Church's clergy is renowned for spreading goodness. They perform many activities on a daily basis, and are mainly present in places of worship, such as churches and temples, which provide a place where priests and paladins can commune with the people of the land.[95] As the general ideology of the Light is to strive to be good in all actions, the priests and paladins must always show themselves worthy of serving the Light, and never forget the virtues that make them what they are. Its teachings are depicted in the Inv misc book 07 [Tome of Divinity].

The clergy organize ceremonies,[61] sermons,[96] masses, and offices until the last call of the bells when the sun goes down.[97][98] They take care of the sick and wounded with their sacred powers, with their knowledge in first aid, and sometimes with the help of their Lightwell.[99] They also make sure to support the society by helping and participating in charitable works.[100][101] In places of worship where the citizens seeked spiritual enlightenment,[102] they act as confessors and are dedicated to hearing the confessions of their followers,[61] sometimes using an invisibility spell as a tool to make the confessing of secrets that weighed heavily upon the souls of worshipers easier to speak.[103] Some of them may make speeches by reading books to educate their followers on various subjects,[104] while others can be in charge of libraries where they make copies of collections.[105] The Church also makes sure to send its priests and paladins on missions against those who threaten the peoples of the Alliance and their allies, notably by allowing the undead and spirits to rest, either by purging them or by using a holy censer to exorcise them.[106][107][108][109]

The vocation of the priest is one of spiritual growth and contemplation. They heal and restore in times of peace, protect in times of war, and guide the spiritual destiny of their people. They are devoted to the spiritual, and express their unwavering faith by serving the people. They have left their temples and shrines to support their allies in war-torn lands,[110] using the holy light to protect them, and their psychic powers to harm and terrify their enemies.[111][112]

The paladins of the Silver Hand are the martial branch of the Church and seek to be an example of the Light's teachings as well as enforce its laws. Powerful holy knights, these crusaders are called to protect the weak, to bring justice to the unjust, and to vanquish evil from the darkest corners of the world. In times of peace, some of them exchange their weapons and armor for simple robes, applying the teachings of Alonsus Faol on the dichotomy of paladins to serve humbly in devastated communities after wars; as they are both warriors and healers.[23]

The clerics of the Brotherhood of Northshire once claimed their mission was to achieve "everlasting peace".[113] In recent years, their priests and paladins use Northshire Abbey as a recruitment and training center for any adventurer brave enough to help keep the kingdom's peace,[114] and ensure the training of the paladins of the Silver Hand and the priests of the clergy.

Following the end of wars, the Church organizes ceremonies for the fallen,[115] taking care of preparing the bodies to be buried according to the traditions.[116]



Priests of the Church in Beginnings & Ends.

As its followers included most of the people from all the human kingdoms combined,[16] and its sacred teachings managed to spread in the societies of the high elves, dwarves, and gnomes, the Church of the Holy Light acts as the most important religious institution within the Alliance, and therefore, has its own hierarchical structure to organize its activities and to take care of its followers through Azeroth.

The Cathedral of Light serves as the main spiritual hub of the Church, and the home to the most powerful and influential holy leaders in the world. It is a sacred place for all followers of the Light from the four corners of Azeroth, having been described as an elegant and peaceful place, inviting for prayer and reflection.[117]


The Church of the Holy Light is led by an Archbishop, who acts as the representative of the institution in the Alliance. They embody the faith of the Light and the power of the Church for all its followers on Azeroth, acting as a symbol of hope during dark and difficult times. Only two archbishops are known so far, Archbishop Benedictus, and his predecessor, the well-renowned Archbishop Alonsus Faol.

The bishops are the high-ranking members of the clergy entrusted with a position of authority in the Church. They do more than advise and assist the Archbishop, they also perform various functions, including the organization of ceremonies and masses,[61] and the training of their apprentices as spiritual advisor and mentor.[118] Some of them may occupy a political role in the court of the kings.[35]

The high priests are high-ranked members and senior priests in the clergy. These church representatives are notably present at Ironforge with High Priest Rohan, in Stromgarde with High Priest Taylor, and once in Quel'Thalas with the late High Priest Vandellor.[39] As the highest authority of the Church present in these places, they are mainly concerned with ensuring the activities and organization of the priests under their jurisdiction, in order to support the population and fulfill their spiritual duties.

Following the betrayal of Benedictus, it is unknown who replaced him since the Cataclysm, although the latter's betrayal and death remain unknown to its members despite some accusations and rumors regarding Benedictus' ties to the Twilight's Hammer.[61] At least, High Priestess Laurena appears to be in charge of the cathedral, replacing the late Archbishop in some of his functions.[66]


All followers of the Holy Light are welcomed by the Church of the Holy Light. Mainly composed of humans, the Church has long welcomed dwarves and high elves, and in recent years, have started recruiting gnomes, worgen, and even Dark Iron dwarves in its ranks. Although draenei have their own religious institutions centered on the worship of the Holy Light of Creation,[119] some of their anchorites are present among the priests in the Cathedral of Light.[2] Consequently, realms where the cult of the Light is predominant have their own clergy, notably in the kingdoms of Stormwind, Stromgarde,[120] Gilneas,[47] Kul Tiras,[121] Ironforge,[122] and once in the kingdoms of Lordaeron and Quel'Thalas.[39][123]

In the ranks of the Church, apprentices and novices are called acolytes if they wish to become priests,[124] and squires if they wish to become paladins.[125]

Before the Third War, priests and paladins were mainly trained at the Cathedral of Capital City, the former main spiritual hub of the Church,[126] or at the Old Monastery, a center for learning and enlightenment known as a proud bastion of Lordaeron's priesthood,[127] and which served as a seminary and major training ground for paladins in training.[128][129] Nowadays, they are mainly trained by their seniors at the Northshire Abbey of Northshire Valley, or in the Cathedral of Light and the Training Hall of Stormwind City. In Ironforge, they are trained in the Hall of Mysteries, a center of arcane and divine practice and study.

During their formation, priests and paladins must learn to abnegate themselves through meditation, in order to become conduits for the Light and use its powers.[130]

Despite the Church's wishes to bolster its ranks, it understands the sacrifices needed to ensure the paladins serving it are worthy, thus requiring long training and several tests that could take their lives.[131] After being deemed worthy, a paladin must go through a ceremony of induction to integrate the order.[19] Thereafter, they continue to be trained by their master, in order to learn how to use their new holy powers.[19][132]

At the end of their training, priest masters test their apprentices to see if they are worthy of wearing their first robes, as a sign that the Church approves and supports them, thus denoting their place in the clergy.[133][134] When they become members of the clergy, priests can obtain the title of "Brother" and "Sister", while senior members may have the title of "Father". When they become members of the Silver Hand, paladins consider themselves to be “brothers” and “sisters”.[135]

Notable members[]

Main article: Church of the Holy Light (category)
Name Title Role Location Status
Alliance IconSmall Human Female Almyra Sister Gilnean priestess trainer Temple of the Moon, Darnassus Alive
Alliance IconSmall Dwarf Male Broxast Bishop Bishop of the Church of Light Arathi Basin, Arathi Highlands Alive
Alliance IconSmall Gnome Female Cogspin "Doc" Surgeon General New Tinkertown, Dun Morogh Alive
Alliance IconSmall Worgen Female Elsington Sister Worgen priestess of the Church Raven Hill, Duskwood Alive
Alliance IconSmall Human Male Gareth Brother High Priest of Stormwind Ruins of Brill, Ruins of Lordaeron Alive
Alliance IconSmall Human Male Hallard Inquisitor Inquisitor of the 7th Legion Wintergarde Keep, Dragonblight Alive
Alliance IconSmall Human Female Mara Fordragon Lady High Clerist of Stormwind Unknown Deceased
Neutral IconSmall Human Female Mercy Fairwater Defender of Drustvar Barrowknoll Cemetery, Drustvar Deceased
Alliance IconSmall Human Male Paxton Brother Caretaker of the Northshire library Northshire Valley, Elwynn Forest Alive
Alliance IconSmall Human Male Revil Kost Priest of the Church of Light Various Alive
Neutral IconSmall HighElf Male Vandellor High Priest High Priest of Quel'Thalas Silvermoon City, Eversong Woods Deceased
Notable former members
Name Title Role Current affiliation(s) Location Status
Neutral IconSmall Alonsus Alonsus Faol Archbishop Archbishop and Champion of the Conclave, formerly Archbishop of the Church of the Light. Conclave Netherlight Temple, Twisting Nether Active (Undead)
Boss IconSmall Benedictus Benedictus Twilight Father Leader and prophet of the Twilight's Hammer, formerly Archbishop of the Church of the Light. Twilight's Hammer Wyrmrest Temple, Hour of Twilight Deceased
Mob IconSmall Human Male Benedictus Voss High Priest High Priest of the Scarlet Crusade, formerly priest of the Church of the Holy Light. Scarlet Crusade Scarlet Watch Post, Tirisfal Glades Deceased
Mob IconSmall Human Male Farthing Twilight Deacon Former leader of the Twilight's Hammer, formerly Bishop of the Church of the Holy Light. Twilight's Hammer Grave-Prison of Zakajz, Tomb of Tyr Deceased
Mob IconSmall Human Male Isillien Grand Inquisitor Grand Inquisitor of the Scarlet Crusade, formerly member of the Church of the Holy Light. Scarlet Crusade Hearthglen, Western Plaguelands Deceased
Horde IconSmall Liadrin Liadrin Blood Matriarch Leader of the Blood Knights, formerly High Priestess of Quel'Thalas. Blood Knights, Kingdom of Quel'Thalas Silvermoon City, Eversong Woods Alive
Neutral IconSmall Human Female Natalie Seline Leader of the Cult of Forgotten Shadows, formerly Bishop of the Church of Light. Cult of Forgotten Shadows, Conclave Netherlight Temple, Twisting Nether Alive
Mob IconSmall Human Male The Black Bishop Bishop of the Twilight's Hammer, formerly priest of the Church of the Holy Light. Twilight's Hammer Cathedral of Light, Stormwind City Deceased


Prior to the Second War, the influence of the Church was quite significant in the political affairs of the human kingdoms, enough for Archbishop Alonsus Faol to obtain a place among the members of the Council of Seven Nations,[136] consisting of the leaders of the seven human nations. The Archbishop gave the Church's support to the Alliance of Lordaeron, and actively participated in their various meetings, his presence being accepted and respected by all the members of the council.[16]

Following the Third War, the Church had reformed itself in the capital of Stormwind. Like in Lordaeron before its fall, the Church has an important place in the politics of the kingdom, with notably Bishop DeLavey at the King's court to conduct various affairs, involving relations with the SI:7. The Church is supported by the population, and has a great popularity which manifests during festivals like the Remembrance Day, when the crowd were eager to hear a speech from the Archbishop.[137]

The Church maintains cordial relations with the other religious institutions in the Alliance, notably with the Sisterhood of Elune, as their priests accepted to train night elves apprentices in the ways of the priesthood.[138][139] Although they share the same faith, but in different institutions, the Church still agreed to train the draenei paladin apprentices they received.[140][141] The Church is in contact with all these organizations, so that the latters can contact their apprentices in training.[142][143]

As it is the way of the divine to help those in need, notably the Argent Crusade and the Cenarion Circle against the Scourge and the Burning Legion, the Church sent them priests and paladins as reinforcements.[144]

However, the Church considered the Kirin Tor and its magi as heretics for centuries, as they never have been fond of their methods, but let them continue to exist because they don't practice dark magic and are somewhere necessary.[145] Some knights of the Silver Hand showed hostility for Rhonin and all the others wizards and mages, seeing them as damned souls, but also as an occasional and necessary evil, which they would do without at any other time.[146] Despite this complicated relationship, the Church ended up helping the Kirin Tor during the Purge of Dalaran,[147] hunting down the Sunreavers in the city, and during the third invasion of the Burning Legion.

In the RPG[]

Pray Light

Church of the Holy Light in the RPG.

Icon-RPG This section contains information from the Warcraft RPG which is considered non-canon.

The Church of the Holy Light is a lawful good organization affiliated with the Alliance that can be found just about everywhere on Azeroth and has approximately 800,000 members.[148]


No one knows how the Church was founded, and no one remembers when people first discovered the Holy Light - or were discovered by it. In a time prior to the First War, humans began preaching about the Holy Light; explaining that it is a great and benevolent force that sought out mortal spirits interested in helping others and protecting life.

Because the philosophy involves a significant amount of study and contemplation, they likely built libraries before churches. As the organization grew, the places of teaching and study grew as well. Eventually, all of the individual churches began working together and formed the Church of the Holy Light.[148]

The Church sends its people all over the world, spreading the wisdom and comfort of the Holy Light. They also do what they can to help people with more practical matters, from building homes to settling family disputes to scaring off enemies. It is all very noble, of course, but that fits with the Holy Light's teachings of making the world a better place and making oneself better by helping other people. The Church has everyone's best interests at heart, and the priest, paladins, and lay members do their best to help everyone. It is a religion that is all about making people truly happy, not to mention a religion whose practitioners show clear evidence of divine blessing.

Even those determined to doubt are forced to admit that the Light grants its followers impressive powers to combat the darkness. No one knows for sure the origin of the church. For that matter, no one knows when people first discovered the Holy Light — or were discovered by it — either. People started preaching the Light at some point, explaining how this great and benevolent force existed and sought out mortal spirits interested in helping others and protecting life in general.

The Holy Light is a strange philosophy because it doesn't involve reverence for a person — the Light is not a god, and virtuous activity in the soul is the sacrifice the Light demands of its followers, not wine or gold or such things that a being needs. There is also study and contemplation involved, particularly on how to make oneself a better person in order to commune with the Light more perfectly. The Church likely had libraries before they had temples, and the one simply grew out of the other. Eventually, all those churches unified and created the Church of the Holy Light.

For a long time, the Church was the dominant human religion. The followers of the Holy Light were everywhere, supporting civilizations, building cities, founding temples, and generally bringing light and hope and help to everyone. Then the First War began. And there were the members of the Church, right in the thick of things, using their Light-given gifts to hold back the Horde. It was impressive — awe-inspiring, really. Unfortunately (say some), most of the priests focused on defending people rather than taking the fight to the Horde. And there just weren’t enough priests to go around. The leader of the Holy Order of Northshire Clerics during the war was Archbishop Alonsus Faol, and his apprentice was a devout lad named Uther. After the First War, Uther knew that that the Church needed to do more when the orcs came again — its people needed to stand up and fight instead of just healing and defending. They needed to go after the darkness and actively prevent it from harming anyone, rather than waiting for it to come to them. He issued a call to all the bravest knights to join his new order, the Knights of the Silver Hand, and thus the paladins were born. They saw their first battles in the Second War and were instrumental in the Alliance’s victory.[148]

Following the Third War, many remaining paladins who served the Silver Hand and now make their new home in Kalimdor are attempting to form a new Church, but the going is slow. As the study of the Holy Light was more of a philosophical pursuit than a faith, the destroyed Church resembled a library instead of a house of worship. Its texts were destroyed along with the Church, many of them burned, most of them buried in thousands of pounds of rubble. What with the wars, settling a new Alliance stronghold and dealing with frequent skirmishes, the remaining scholars and priests have found little time to work on transcribing old information into new books for initiates. Most young followers of the Holy Light learn by experience at the heel of a more experienced person instead of in libraries surrounded by texts.

Some self-appointed sages are taking up the mantle of rewriting the pontifications on the Holy Light, but there is no regulation or overseer. There are fresh looks at old ideas, as well as old ideas copied word for word by diligent old priests with perfect memories. As one would expect, sometimes these scholars clash when someone realizes that the texts are beginning to contradict one another. There is tension within the church: Younger priests feel the Third War gave the Holy Light a chance to renew itself just as the Alliance was renewing itself on Kalimdor, while others demand to keep to old traditions.

Secular citizens care little for the debates but prefer their rituals to remain the same. With everything around them changing, faith represents one of the few constants.[149]

Some claim that the Third War was the best thing that could have happened to the Church, and suggest that the Church take this opportunity to rebuild itself. They claimed that the Church had strayed from the path of the Three Virtues and needed to pare back down to essentials. According to these younger priests, their elders had lost touch with the Light and it was time to reclaim that holy communion.

It is said that the Church is finally organizing again and looking at all these texts for consistency and accuracy, but it's unknown if that's true. It is known that the Church is stronger than it's been in centuries. It's rebuilding, regaining ground, and speaking out against the Scourge and other evils.[148]


The Church has an archbishop which is in charge, and he has a council of bishops to advise him. Usually, the archbishop was a bishop himself before he was selected, and once he's been chosen he's in charge until he dies or chooses to step down. The bishops do more than advise the archbishop, of course. Each bishop has charge of a region, in some cases an entire continent. The regions are based more on population than area, so in some cases a bishop might only be responsible for a large city, while others have an entire countryside. Stormwind City has its own bishop, as does Northrend. Priests work for the bishops, and they do most of the actual community work: preaching, tending to the wounded, teaching the children, and so on. They lay priests as well, who aren't ordained and cannot preach, but handle most of the daily chores around the temples and monasteries.

The Church of the Holy Light can only get so much through donations. In order to feed the priests, the religious institution has to make money. It has farms all over the countryside, most of them housing monasteries, and the priests there raise crops and cattle and whatever else the Church needs, and sell the surplus. In some regions, the Church owns land and rents it to farmers, merchants, or businessmen. They don't keep much of the profit, though — and the Church is always giving food, clothing and tools to the poor. It also teaches people about prayer, about health and farming, and generally how to be a good person.

Before the First War, the Church had three major locations: Northshire Abbey in Azeroth's western countryside, the Temple of Light in Stratholme, and the Cathedral of Light in Stormwind City. The Horde destroyed Northshire Abbey in the First War, tearing it apart and burning the rubble.[148] The Temple of Light fell with the rest of Stratholme to the Scourge. Only the Cathedral of Light remains, and this has become the Church's headquarters. A grand structure with many wings and spires, the Cathedral houses Archbishop Benedictus, the bishop of Stormwind City, and various other priests. It also contains the Grand Chamber, a vast meeting room where the council of bishops meets with the archbishop to discuss issues and plot the Church's actions.[150] The Northshire Abbey was later rebuilt, but is only an outpost of the Cathedral of Light.[151]


Anyone can follow the path of the Holy Light, and anyone who follows the Holy Light is welcomed by the Church. Most of its members are human, but the Church does not discriminate. High elves and Ironforge dwarves have long been members.

Though anyone can become a member of the Church, becoming an actual priest is a long and difficult process. First come various classes, taught by lay priests, all about the Church's history, principles, and activities. If the applicant does well in class he graduates to the next level, taking personal instruction with a priest, learning prayers and other devotions. Most applicants become lay priests, working for the Church while studying. They can spend several years in instruction, until the priest feels they're ready. Then there's an audience with the bishop, and a stay in one of the Church's monasteries — several months to several years away from everyone except other faithful. During this time many of them experience true communion with the Light for the first time. If the applicant maintains his faith and still seems suitable, the monastery's head priest sponsors him for ordination. Once a priest is ordained, his life belongs to the Church. The council decides where he goes and what he will do, whether that's working a farm or preaching in a city. Most priests stay with the Church until they die, though as they get older they do more studious and clerical work and less physical labor. A few lose faith and break away, forsaking their vows. Those who do stay, and who distinguish themselves spiritually and politically, can rise through the ranks and eventually become a bishop.

One might expect from a priest of the Church of the Holy Light that they ensure the role of confessor and moral support.[152]

After the Second War, the Church of the Holy Light had very few members — in large part because so many died in Lordaeron — and most temples had a single priest or were actually shut down. People have begun applying again since the Third War, however, and now the temples are all fully staffed again.[153]


The council has many bishops, though naturally not all of them can attend every meeting. Many handle their own regions well but are quiet during meetings, expressing opinions with nods or frowns and voting without a word. Others are more boisterous, more aggressive, and more political. Three of these have formed their own power bases within the council, and they and the archbishop are the true powers of the Church — some might say the three bishops are the power, and the archbishop dances desperately among them, attempting to prevent a schism.[153]

Name Location
IconSmall Benedictus Archbishop Benedictus Cathedral of Light, Stormwind City
IconSmall Human Male Hylan Cathedral of Light, Stormwind City
IconSmall Human Male Leander Cathedral of Light, Stormwind City
IconSmall Human Male Neheri Cathedral of Light, Stormwind City

The Three Virtues[]

The philosophy of the Holy Light boils down to the three teachings, called the Three Virtues. These virtues — respect, tenacity, and compassion — are each defined into a principle and a lesson.

The first virtue taught is respect. While the Holy Light teaches that awareness of the self and the universe is a goal, one must also see the connection between others and the universe. Destroying other's happiness and severing other's connections with the universe is not serving the world's well being, and therefore not your own. The practitioners of the Holy Light are not naive, however, and understand that trial, conflict, war, and suffering do happen; but they strive to make the universe a better place in spite of these hindrances.

The second virtue is tenacity. The adherence to this virtue is, incidentally, the part of training under the Holy Light that weeds out the unfaithful, as true dedication takes years. Fresh-faced acolytes often lose hope and the true meaning of the Holy Light when they realize that it takes a lifetime to serve the philosophy. The world is much bigger than one lone soul; and while the world can change a soul in a day, it takes much more time to change the world. Only through tenacity can a servant of the Holy Light hope to affect the universe. If some young students feel like this is an impossible task, others take heart in the realization that if you truly believe there is a connection between the self and the universe, one cannot help but affect the other, no matter the size. Affecting the world can include anything from teaching and instilling hope in others to joining with other like-minded individuals to work together to create a bigger change.

After the first two concepts are mastered, the student can take on the final virtue: compassion. The connection between the self and the universe is strong, but it still is only one connection. If a follower of the Light serves another to increase his happiness, his bond with the universe grows stronger. The happiness he receives by helping someone also strengthens himself and the universe, and he is able to affect the universe even more.

Compassion is perhaps the most powerful — and yet most dangerous — virtue.

If someone is too compassionate, he can give help where none is needed — or wanted. This oversight can hinder one's growth and happiness. For example, one may help another with a seemingly impossible quest, when such a quest is not actually out of the abilities of the one making the attempt. Thus, Compassion (however well-intentioned) has resulted in that person's inability to grow as the quest was essentially "done for them", hindering their growth and happiness.

Some helpers can be awkward and do more harm than good with their actions, increasing the suffering and unhappiness in the world. A well-meaning follower of the Light may rush to the aid of an adventurer(s) and wind up gaining too much interest of those attacking, and thus force those they try to help to rush to the follower's aid.

This is why compassion is taught last; only the wise and those fully understanding compassion may identify who is truly in need and who can grow on their own.[154]

RPG notes[]

  • Early humans may have previously had access to divine spells through worship of the Old Gods or early cults that would become the Church of the Holy Light someday.[155]

Notes and trivia[]


The religion and culture of the Church of the Holy Light and its branches are loosely based on Christianity, especially through the use of specific titles (e.g. Bishop). However, the absence of a "Pope" or "Patriarch", as the highest rank being Archbishop, and the presence of women clerics lends itself to being based upon the hierarchy of Anglican ministry.


This article or section includes speculation, observations or opinions possibly supported by lore or by Blizzard officials. It should not be taken as representing official lore.



  1. ^ Priest (Warcraft III)
  2. ^ a b c Before the Storm, chapter 8
  3. ^ A [15-30] A Righteous Sermon
  4. ^ a b World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 2
  5. ^ The Shattering: Prelude to Cataclysm, chapter 6
  6. ^ Tides of Darkness, chapter 3
  7. ^ a b c World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 1, pg. 142
  8. ^ World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 1, pg. 141
  9. ^ The Seven Kingdoms
  10. ^ a b World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 2, pg. 126
  11. ^ World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 2, pg. 125
  12. ^ Warcraft: Orcs & Humans
  13. ^ Tides of Darkness, chapter 5
  14. ^ Lady Mara Fordragon#Stormwind City statue tribute
  15. ^ World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 2, pg. 142
  16. ^ a b c Tides of Darkness, chapter 5
  17. ^ Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness manual, Nations of the Alliance, Lordaeron
  18. ^ Tides of Darkness, chapter 21
  19. ^ a b c Of Blood and Honor, chapter 2
  20. ^ Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness manual, Alliance Buildings, Church
  21. ^ Word of the Conclave
  22. ^ Alonsus Faol#Death and remembrance
  23. ^ a b Beyond the Dark Portal, chapter 5
  24. ^ Arthas: Rise of the Lich King, chapter 2, pg. 35 (paperback)
  25. ^ World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 3, pg. 44
  26. ^ Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos manual, pg. 10
  27. ^ Ravages of the Plague
  28. ^ a b Blizzard Entertainment. Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos Manual, 82. 
  29. ^ World of Warcraft: Ashbringer
  30. ^ World of Warcraft: Game Manual, pg. 170
  31. ^ The Missing Diplomat quest chain
  32. ^ A [37D] Bring the Light
  33. ^ The Third Fleet quest chain
  34. ^ Morbent Fel quest chain
  35. ^ a b A [28] The Missing Diplomat
  36. ^ A [39] Brother Anton
  37. ^ Desperate Prayer (quest)
  38. ^ A [53] The Scourge Cauldrons
  39. ^ a b c Blood of the Highborne
  40. ^ Argent Emissary#Quotes
  41. ^ Bishop Lazaril#Quotes
  42. ^ A IconSmall Human MaleIconSmall Human Female [70] Stormwind
  43. ^ Stormrage, chapter 21
  44. ^ Beginnings & Ends
  45. ^ The Shattering: Prelude to Cataclysm, chapter 6
  46. ^ World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 3, pg. 200
  47. ^ a b A Priest [2] Seek the Sister
  48. ^ A IconSmall Worgen MaleIconSmall Worgen Female Priest [2] Learning the Word
  49. ^ Make Haste to the Cathedral
  50. ^ Meet with High Priestess Laurena
  51. ^ A Paladin [20-30D] Weapons of Darkness
  52. ^ Lord Grayson Shadowbreaker (quest)
  53. ^ Meet with Lord Grayson Shadowbreaker
  54. ^ A Paladin [20-30D] Weapons of Darkness
  55. ^ Farthing#Cathedral of Light
  56. ^ H [15-35] The Kirin Tor's True Colors
  57. ^ Combat Domination of Nagrand
  58. ^ Combat Domination of Gorgrond
  59. ^ A [10-45] The Battle for Broken Shore
  60. ^ N Priest [45] A Light in the Darkness
  61. ^ a b c d e Bishop Arthur#Quotes
  62. ^ Shadowlord Slaghammer#Quotes
  63. ^ Slaghammer's Notes: The New Leader
  64. ^ Slaghammer's Notes: Tyr's Fall
  65. ^ N Priest [10-45] Blade in Twilight
  66. ^ a b Before the Storm, chapter 1
  67. ^ Elegy, pg. 69 - 70
  68. ^ Elegy, pg. 78
  69. ^ World of Warcraft: Exploring Azeroth: The Eastern Kingdoms, pg. 85
  70. ^ Make Haste to the Cathedral
  71. ^ A Priest [20-30] Meet with Patrice Lancaster
  72. ^ A Paladin [20-30D] Weapons of Darkness
  73. ^ A Priest [8-30D] Favored of the Light
  74. ^ A Priest [1-10] A Priest's End
  75. ^ A [1-10] Resurrecting the Recruits
  76. ^ Arthas: Rise of the Lich King, pg. 26
  77. ^ Exploring Azeroth: The Eastern Kingdoms, pg. 107
  78. ^ Trade archaeology mithrilnecklace [Gilded Prayer Beads]
  79. ^ Arthas: Rise of the Lich King, pg. 137 - 138
  80. ^ Legends Volume 5: A Cleansing Fire
  81. ^ Blizzard lore posts#Sean Copeland
  82. ^ Pearl of Pandaria
  83. ^ a b c World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 2, pg. 154
  84. ^ A IconSmall Human MaleIconSmall Human Female Paladin [12] The Tome of Divinity
  85. ^ A Paladin [60] To Show Due Judgment
  86. ^ World of Warcraft: The Magazine Issue 4, pg. 84
  87. ^ Of Blood and Honor, chapter 1
  88. ^ Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos, quotes from the Priest and Uther the Lightbringer.
  89. ^ Brother Sarno#Quotes
  90. ^ Lord Grayson Shadowbreaker#Quotes
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  93. ^ A [60P] The Archbishop's Mercy
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  96. ^ Bishop (Rise of the Lich King)#Quotes
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  98. ^ Shadows Rising, chapter 6
  99. ^ A [10-30] By Fire Be Saved!
  100. ^ A IconSmall Human MaleIconSmall Human Female Paladin [12] The Tome of Divinity
  101. ^ A Paladin [60] Emphasis on Sacrifice
  102. ^ Blizzard Entertainment. Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos Manual, 11. 
  103. ^ Warcraft: Orcs & Humans manual, Azeroth Army of the First War, Cleric Spells
  104. ^ A [24] Speaking of Fortitude
  105. ^ A [24] Brother Paxton
  106. ^ A Paladin [60] To Show Due Judgment
  107. ^ A Paladin [60] Exorcising Terrordale
  108. ^ A [10-30] Soothing Spirits
  109. ^ A [10-30] The Cries of the Dead
  110. ^
  111. ^ A IconSmall Human MaleIconSmall Human Female Priest [3] Learning the Word
  112. ^ A IconSmall Worgen MaleIconSmall Worgen Female Priest [2] Learning the Word
  113. ^ Warcraft: Orcs & Humans manual, Azeroth Army of the First War, Cleric
  114. ^ Races of World of Warcraft: Human
  115. ^ The Shattering: Prelude to Cataclysm
  116. ^ Before the Storm, chapter 17
  117. ^ World of Warcraft: Exploring Azeroth: The Eastern Kingdoms, pg. 17
  118. ^ Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness manual, Legends of the Land, Sire Uther Lightbringer
  119. ^ The Burning Crusade Townhall: FAQ - Races
  120. ^ Stromgarde Priest
  121. ^ Chaplain (Warcraft III)
  122. ^ Ironforge Priest
  123. ^ Priest (Warcraft III)
  124. ^ Before the Storm, chapter 26
  125. ^ N Paladin [45] Judgment Awaits
  126. ^ Arthas: Rise of the Lich King
  127. ^ Game Guide/World Dungeons#The Scarlet Monastery
  128. ^ A [38D] Mythology of the Titans
  129. ^ A [30D] The Scarlet Monastery
  130. ^ World of Warcraft: The Comic, Issue 22: Whispers
  131. ^ A Paladin [25] The Tome of Valor
  132. ^ Arthas: Rise of the Lich King, pg. 62
  133. ^ A Priest [4] Garments of the Light
  134. ^ A Priest [4] Garments of the Light
  135. ^ Arthas: Rise of the Lich King, part 1, chapter 5
  136. ^ Tides of Darkness, chapter 3
  137. ^ Blood of Our Fathers
  138. ^ Desperate Prayer (quest)
  139. ^ A Priest [20-30] Meet with Patrice Lancaster
  140. ^ Lord Grayson Shadowbreaker (quest)
  141. ^ Meet with Lord Grayson Shadowbreaker
  142. ^ A IconSmall NightElf MaleIconSmall NightElf Female Priest [10] Returning Home
  143. ^ A IconSmall NightElf MaleIconSmall NightElf Female Priest [20] Elune's Grace
  144. ^ N Priest [52] Cenarion Aid
  145. ^ Road to Damnation
  146. ^ Day of the Dragon, chapter 2
  147. ^ Stormwind Cleric
  148. ^ a b c d e Alliance Player's Guide, pg. 152
  149. ^ World of Warcraft: The Roleplaying Game, pg. 169 - 170
  150. ^ Alliance Player's Guide, pg. 152 - 153
  151. ^ Lands of Conflict, pg. 49
  152. ^ Dark Factions, pg. 79
  153. ^ a b Alliance Player's Guide, pg. 153
  154. ^ World of Warcraft: The Roleplaying Game, pg. 168 - 169
  155. ^ Lands of Conflict, pg. 19
  156. ^ A [29] The Doomed Fleet
  157. ^ A [10-30] In Service to the Light
  158. ^ High Priest Rohan, Toldren Deepiron, Theodrus Frostbeard, and the Ironforge Priests
  159. ^ A IconSmall Human MaleIconSmall Human Female Priest [3] Learning the Word
  160. ^ A IconSmall Worgen MaleIconSmall Worgen Female Priest [2] Learning the Word
  161. ^ Arcane Feedback (quest)
  162. ^ Dark Riders
  163. ^ A Paladin [25] The Tome of Valor
  164. ^ Besieged Villager says: "By the light! You can speak!" Arom exclaimed!
  165. ^ Lost Soul says: The Light is so warm...
  166. ^ A [20-60] To Market, To Market
  167. ^ A [20-60] The Adventurer's Society
  168. ^ A [10-70] Shapeshifters! - Liam says: By the light! A talking cat!
  169. ^ Chris Metzen on Twitter (2013-12-20).​ “love Argent, hate Scarlet....” (when asked about the Church's position on the topic)
  170. ^ Inv scroll 04 [Give to the Church and the Light Will Provide]