The Church of Ilmater
was the religious organization dedicated to the worship and service of Ilmater
, the Crying God. The clergy were dedicated to providing healing and succor to all in need, whatever the cost to themselves, as they believed life was sacred and that suffering to preserve it was holy. Misunderstood and scorned by those hard of heart, the Ilmatari were yet loved and relied upon by ordinary folk, and the church had the widest and most faithful following in all Faerûn
. It was popular in the realms of Calimshan
, was the state religion of the kingdoms of Damara
, and was the civic deity of the city of Uzurr
, while it was persecuted in Thay
The Ilmatari established their churches in areas stricken with poverty or oppression, and dedicated themselves to helping the sick and injured, the oppressed, and the poor. They gave healing and treatment; donated food, drink, and firewood; provided shelter for the homeless; offered moral support and counseling; and buried the dead. They also stood up for the persecuted, took risks to save people in danger, even sacrificed themselves for others.
Thanks to its practices and tenets, the Church of Ilmater produced many martyrs and saints, and was the only faith to have a saint known as "the Twice-Martyred". Many of these had an associated monastic order, each traditionally bearing the symbol of a flower, from the warrior monks of the Broken Ones to the oft-inebriated Order of Saint Dionysus. The church also had several affiliated knightly and paladin orders, such as the Companions of the Noble Heart and the Order of the Golden Cup. It had a dark side in the Cult of Shared Suffering, but this thorn in the church's side did not tarnish its reputation for goodness and charity.