Ministorum Priests are the
wrinkly old ballsacks Preachers, Missionaries, Confessors, Deacons, Pontifices, and other clergy members of the Ecclesiarchy, dispatched to accompany the Imperial Guard during campaigns and battles and to accompany the Sisters of Battle for roaring speeches and...other uses...what, they're like the only men in the Adepta Sororitas, the Sisters can't be too picky (Well, save for maybe the Crusaders but they're also part of the Inquisition and Grey Knights despite coming from the same place as the Sisters...maybe the Crusaders are considered a 'special event' perhaps?).
One may wonder the benefits of being the only one with testicles in an entire military order filled to the brim with menstruating, angry women. The answer is what you will expect, fantastic when on their good mood and fucking terrifying/noisy when its their time of the month. At least you have a giant chainsaw by your side in case any of them get particularly trigger happy.
Ministorum Priests essentially act like glorified orators meant to stir up the morale of Guardsmen and Sisters in order to better smite the enemies of mankind from existence. In fact they are so good with their speeches that it can stir a populace to rebelling against a heretic lord or persuade an army to lay down its arms and submit to the mercy of the Emperor (which is inevitably quick and bloody).
Priests favour close combat over shooting, and through their inspiring exhortations, instill this ideal into the Guardsmen following them. Such is their fury that priest-led squads will always charge any enemy within reach, making priests as ferocious as Commissars when it comes to motivating men, although they use inspiration rather than fear.
For some reason Inquisitors often see it useful for an Ecclesiarchal clergy member to form part of his retinue. Ecclesiarchy priests attached to a retinue are referred to as Hierophants (No not the other one).
Due to their reliance of close combat weapons, Ministorum Priests prefer an Eviscerator, a massive, ECKS BAWKS HUEG two-handed chainsword capable of inflicting horrific injuries on living creatures, slicing through walls and even destroying vehicles, with an attached Exterminator so they can wield a giant flaming chainsaw. This overtly violent melee weapon makes the priest an even more powerful individual in close combat. On the other hand, lesser ranked Priests/Priests-in-training carry a more simple but no-less religiously important symbol of the Emperor's most mighty Warhammer of Imperial justice.
Additionally, Priests often wear a rosarius, a potent device commonly used throughout the Adeptus Ministorum as it has a religious aspect as well as a protective one in that when the field is impacted it gives off a great blast of white light, leading some to believe that the Emperor himself is protecting the priest. A priest is often festooned with purity seals, and sometimes bears a holy relic so that all Emperor-fearing troops looking upon the image will be heartened at the sight.
Confessors are a sub-variety of the regular Ministorum Priests. They were once Preachers but have since been promoted for their zeal. When you think of Priests stirring the loins of Guardsmen with badass speeches, these are the type of guys your thinking of.
Confessors use their oratory skills to stir the emotions of entire crowds, leading them to confess personal heresies and mutations, and to betray their neighbors as psykers or other deviants. They are free to wander within an entire diocese and preach among the population.
They often work on Imperial colonies with planetary governors and are especially useful on worlds where faith is lacking and the people are rebellious. With special dispensation from the Ecclesiarchy, they may even gather armies of Frateris Militia and lead wars of faith against the enemies of the Imperium. Confessors often wear the Rosarius as both protection and a symbol of their rank (and yet the Brides of the Emperor for all their devotion and this device's public knowledge and high esteem were ignorant of it. So much for being faithful).
A Confessor attached to the Missionarus Galaxia is styled Confessor-Militant. There is also the Arch-Confessors, which are the highest rank of Confessor. These servants of the Imperial Creed are exceptional orators who can have swathes of citizens rush forward to confess their sins.
All in all, Confessors are the hypeman that drums up how cool the Imperial Cult is with loud and bombastic speeches whereas the Missionaries use the more quiet, charismatic and diplomatic approach.
It is unknown if Goge Vandire was a Confessor before he became full blown Space Stalin, however, with the way he rolled during the Age of Apostasy, it wouldn't surprise us.
Like the real world counterpart, a Missionary is an agent of the Missionarius Galaxia and tasked with spreading the word of the Imperial Creed throughout the Imperium. They are the more reasonable members of the Ecclesiarchy as a whole and are willing to spend however much time it takes to convert a world be it decades or even centuries. Helped by the fact the Ecclesiarchy will take pretty much any acceptance of the Emperor's divinity as good enough and rubber stamp it.
Missionaries have little guidance from the Adeptus Ministorum and are mainly free to spread the faith in any way they see fit, due to this they are surprisingly flexible, pragmatic and liberal in the largely conservative orthodoxy of the Ecclesiarchy.
Missionaries are skilled in oration, manipulation, and subtly changing a culture to bring it into line with the Imperial Cult in contrast to the more bombastic oration from a Confessor. This is usually done by replacing the gods of the existing pantheon with Imperial Saints or the ritual consumption of human flesh with that of a rare animal. If these methods fail to change the religious habits of a newly discovered population, they are also often skilled warriors not above the use of brute force.
They usually run charitable institutions called Missions on newly discovered human worlds. Missions take the form of schools and hospitals. One of the purposes of these institutions is to further the observance of the Imperial Cult. The most famous Missions are the Schola Progenium, which are schools for training Imperial orphans to be Imperial servants.
Missionaries range from the young fervent hopefuls to the old, wise, and toughened members of the Missionarus Galaxia. They are always at the forefront of Imperial expansion and accompany the crusading armies as they discover new worlds and contact lost civilizations.
The most famous Missionary is Uriah Jacobus.
|Forces of the Sisters of Battle|
|Command:||Triumph of Saint Katherine - Canoness |
Ecclesiarchy Battle Conclave - Imagifier
Ministorum Priest - Palatine - Dogmata
Sororitas Command Squad
|Troops:||Avenging Angel - Arco-flagellant - Battle Sister Squad |
Celestians - Crusaders - Death Cult Assassin
Dominion Squad - Novitiate Squad - Retributor Squad
Seraphim Squad - Sisters Repentia - Zephyrim Squad
|Vehicles:||Castigator Tank - Exorcist - Immolator |
Paragon Warsuit - Penitent Engine
Repressor - Rhino - Mortifier
|Special Vehicles:||Pulpit of Saint Holline's Basilica|
|Flyers:||Avenger Strike Fighter|
|Spacecraft:||Aquila Lander - Drop Pod|
|Saints:||Living Saint - Geminae Superia|
|Non Militant:||Orders Dialogous - Orders Famulous - Orders Hospitaler |
Orders Pronatus - Hagiolater
|Forces of the Inquisition|
|Command:||Inquisitor (Ordo Malleus Inquisitor - Ordo Hereticus Inquisitor |
Ordo Xenos Inquisitor)
|Retinue:||Acolyte - Arbites Enforcer - Arco-flagellant - Astropath - Banisher |
Cherubim - Chiurgeon - Crusaders - Daemonhost - Death Cult Assassin
Jokaero - Hierophant - Mystic - Sanctioned Psyker - Sage (Autosavant
Lexmechanic - Sister Dialogous) - Servo-skull - Servitor - Sister Hospitaler
Pariah - Penitent - Ministorum Priest - Militarum Veteran Squad - Warp-Seer
|Auxiliaries:||Inquisitorial Stormtroopers - Deathwatch - Grey Knights |
Sisters of Battle - Callidus Assassin - Culexus Assassin
Eversor Assassin - Vindicare Assassin - Vanus Assassin
|Vehicles:||Chimera - Land Raider (Land Raider Crusader |
Land Raider Redeemer) - Razorback - Rhino
|Special Vehicles:||Throne of Judgement|
|Spacecraft:||Aquila Lander - Gun-Cutter - Inquisitorial Black Ship|