Documents of Theory and Practice

(Provisional Charter to Outremer Society and the Medieval village of Tortosa)

I. Mission.
To recreate the life in the Outremer as it was in the medieval era to foster a greater understanding of the crusades and the crusader states. To act a united body for members to enjoy camaraderie and assistance. To be a "City" united to one goal, the enjoyment of medievalism by reenacting the city of Tortosa and it's outlying area circa 1100-1300AD.
We do this by.
I.a. To reenact in Manner, Dress and Traditions. Reenactment is an attempt to as closely copy or pattern after something from the past. Specifically the clergy and nobility of the medieval Outremer. Outside personas are welcome, but all built structures must be of the Outremer or in some cases, Europe circa 1100-1300AD.
I.b. Manner, this is simple acting. To act and react as your "Medieval Persona" would.
I.c. Dress, this means your costume or garb. Avoid polyester & other non-period fabrics whenever possible." Keep to period materials if you can, natural fabrics like Cotton, Linen, wool and the like.
Research is the key, think of when your from, a 11th century Turk would not carry a claymore and a 12th century Crusader would not wear sneakers .So keep in mind your role that you reenact in the society. Be as close to "Period" that you can. Simple leather boots or Chinese slippers are close in appearance for those newcomers to the hobby. Do your best, and do it well.
Since we reenact the crusades your garment should fit the role of your persona (no big clunky gold rings for a mendicant Friar). Also keep in mind on what weapons you should carry. If you are a cleric, remember not to carry 'live steel' (a blade of any sort).
Clerics had no reason to carry a blade. If they weren't fighters, they were peaceful and did not kill. (Being those who were not in fighting Holy Orders. Or odd German Bishops) Clerics, from novices to Bishops were not allowed to cut living tissue. However, they WERE allowed to puncture it, as in archery, or to crush it, by use of a mace. Clerics, who were among their flock or on the Crusades, seeing to the spiritual well-being of the crusaders, often carried a mace of some sort. A blade was only used to cut food, but NEVER living tissue!
I.d Understand the traditions you follow, learn about the major rituals and customs that is appropriate to your place and era. Remember your Manner (I.B) & Dress (I.C) will help set your mood and make it easier to be in 'Persona.'
If possible, avoid contractions in your speech and be polite.
To foster interest in the crusader states of the middle ages by the creation of a medieval village and through events, demos and fairs. To allow lands to be “leased” in ways to be later ratified that will give our members limited ownership of our Village of Tortosa by building period homes on a 1/4 acre (about) lot.
II.a Events- These are closed to the public and are for members and guests, here we all dress in our garb and revel in Persona, Tournaments of arms, archery, camping,games and and dance, and so much more its beyond the scope of this paper but in brief means that we are to play the role of the medieval folks.
II.b Demos- this is a small showing of our skills and abilities at schools or other areas to create interest and draw in new members. Often including armored fighting and teaching of history and of subjects from pewter casting to carpentry.
II.c Fairs as per above on a larger scale. Money to help manage land and build Public buildings, ect.
To serve the state of Montana and the membership of our group. Best done through period display of our outremer personas and medieval village.. To aid and assist other medieval groups like the SCA,inc by providing a period location to rent from us.
III.a SCA Fighters: will do it through ars martial, specifically arming and training members in both armored and light weapons forms, providing a tactical fighting unit to the city in times of campaigning and war, and to support interest in and provide contacts for education and training new members of the society in arts and sciences.
Until we get insurance though we will only have fighting while sponsoring the SCA,inc or other insured reenactment group.
III.b CLERGY : and other non-fighters should perform ceremonies as needed.
In addition, they should do, but are not limited to, at least one of the following: teach, calligraphy & illuminate, brew, academia (research), & act as a diplomat and be respectful of the faith they portray.
III.c. To perpetuate enjoyment of The Outremer Society (henceforth known as the Society) through activities focused towards recreation, camaraderie and social interaction. Mainly by being a period presence for the enjoyment of others by our reenactment of life in the Outremer.
III.4. To encourage service to the society on an individual basis. Done with the Outremer theme.
III.5. To act as living symbols within the society by creating a medieval presence. This is to be continued into other medieval groups as well.
III.6. The Structure will be based upon the reenactment of the Outremer between the years 1100-1300 AD. This is the "Classical era" of the age of faith i.e. the middle ages. Members may have their personas be from any era in the timeline.
The society will respect its ranks and members and act as a period focus with in the society.
The Cartulary (Bylaws)
IV. Membership
IV.a. Membership is open to anyone who portray medieval outremer personae.
IV.b. Non European Personas
Since many in the Outremer were native Saracens and Middle Eastern Jews are excellent personas to reenact.
IV.c. All interested in joining the society should live close enough to attend society meetings & sponsored events in the area, or in some way, follow the minutes from other society meeting outside your area, that will be posted on 'The Outremer Society's' e-mail list. This is only advise but offers greater rewards in your understanding of the hobby.
IV.D. Induction Process
IV.d.1. All paying members (or non paying, it does not matter within our group) of the society are open to membership unless... - Conviction of reprehensible crimes in the mundane world to include, but are not limited to; spousal abuse, proven child abuse and/or molestation, sexual assault, aggravated assault, underage drinking or any acts that could cause harm or sanction by the society. Such acts place us ALL IN JEOPARDY, and can result in arrest or conviction and banishment from the society.
- Conviction of a Capital crime while a member of the society.
IV.E. In the specific case of removal of a member, the membership must vote a two-thirds majority recommending removal. The final decision rests with the Prior, who is mindful that they must find them with mercy and kindness...and understand that they have the right to continue their persona nevertheless in other medieval groups unrelated to the Society.
IV.F. Dues -- See Membership on the web site.
IV.G. Organization
IV.G.1. The Outremer Society
The society proper will be composed of all individuals described in the membership section and all medieval groups and houses who agree to the terms of this Charter.
IV.G.2. The Corpora (See Corpora
IV.G.2.a. Duties and Responsibilities -- General
The Corpora exists to serve the needs of the society. It is the Responsibility of the corpora to recommend revisions and addenda to the Charter; to provide heraldry to be used in common by the society; to co-sponsor gatherings at large intersociety events (i.e. Pennsic, Estrella, Gulf Wars, etc.); to maintain the Calendar of the society.
IV.G.2.b. Presiding over matters of discipline
It shall be the responsibility of the corpora to preside over any inquiries which may result in sanctions against or removal of any member from the society. Should corpora find just cause for sanctions or removal, the case will be presented to the membership of the Society for dispensation as provided for in section IVE.
IV.G.2.c. Ad Hoc Reservation
Corpora reserves for itself the right to make decisions regarding issues not specifically covered in the Charter. These decisions, called "Canons" will be placed second in precedence to the Charter.
The membership of the society has the right to appeal any Canon passed by corpora under this provision. Appeals must be submitted to the Canon Lawyer, who will then forward it on to the membership of the society. A 2/3 majority vote will be required to overturn decisions made by the BOD under these provisions.
Any appeal appearing on the list without the header of the Canon Lawyer will not be considered valid and any vote taken on the matter will not be binding.
IV.G.3. Composition and Membership

      IV.G.3.a   The corpora will be composed  of 2 members chosen from the current membership of the society and 2 life long members, being the Scheiners who founded this society, investing much into this group and currently making this possible.

Any paid member is eligible to sit on corpora.

     IV.G.3.b   Members of the corpora are  nominated to serve on the seat by the membership of the society. The candidate's  membership will have been seconded by one or more of the current membership of  the corpora, and elected by a simple majority of the membership of the  society.

Nominations will be made to the President of the Society, who will then present the nomination to corpora for secondment. Once the required secondment is given, the candidate will be presented to the membership for approval.

The current membership of corpora will be considered elected by acclamation upon ratification of this section

IV.G.3.c. The current membership of corpora will be considered elected by acclamation upon ratification of this section.
IV.G.4. Officers
IV.G.4.a. President of the Society
The President will have general oversight of the operation of corpora. He will be responsible for presenting candidates for membership of corpora to corpora and the society membership. He will also have the responsibility for presiding over matters of inquiry that could result in sanctions against or removal of any member, as provided for in sections IV.E. and IV.G.
IV.G.4.b. Secretary of the Society
The Secretary will be responsible for moderating the Society List, and maintaining the General Calendar of the Curia.
IV.G.4.c. Canon Lawyer
The Canon Lawyer will be responsible for submitting drafts of revisions, addenda, etc. to the Charter, as well as Canons passed as per section IV.G.2.c. Drafts will be approved by corpora before being submitted to the membership of the society for full ratification.
IV.G.4.d. Exchequer

This is our chief financial officer who keeps records for our group.

IV.H Rules of Order

   IV.H.1     Anyone found drinking under age 21 will be removed from and may be banned. Anyone giving minors alcohol will be subject to a permanant ban.

   IV.H.2     Anyone using illegal narcotics damages the reputation of this group and will be removed from site if caught doing them on site. Also they may be banned either temporarily or permanently at the descretion of the Prior.

          IV.H.2.a.      Exception's for medical needs for those with prescription drugs or a medical marijauna card, with proof to show if asked.

IV.H.3 Public Intoxication

Public intoxication is hard to address, but we reserve the right to take your keys if you can't drive and refusal may result in your future banning of social events with our group either temporarily or permanently at the discretion of the Prior, and or others to be addressed in ratification.

IV.H.4 Public Arguing (that's not in character, character play is immune)

Public arguing will not be tolerated if it becomes either heated and vulgar, and or abusive and will result with either a time out, immediately stop, or possible ejection from the Prior, or other member appointed by him. Keep in mind, this is a time of politeness. Staged conflict, as character play is different, but even character play may be limited by others in persona if it becomes offensive.

V. Religion and the Church of Tortosa

   V.a.1   Religion was the heart of medieval life and we don't ignore it, but encourage it's role in our society. Tortosa is lead by the Prior who is also the  president of the society. He is influenced by the Bishop, and the Mayor, the only secular authority. We represent living within lands controlled by the medieval church instead of some nobleman. As it's in the most multicultural region of the middle ages the most period religious choices are available to personas. Those who choose personas to mock the religions may get banned if it's found by the Prior to promote hate and/or bigotry.

We do not condone nor forbid any period faith mentioned below, our purpose it to simply state what faiths were realistic to that era.
This is not a judgement, and our use of the words pagan and heretic is used historically, and mean not to offend.

V.a.2    Examples of Period Religions recognised as period.

Christianity (Catholic,Orthodox, Celtic, Coptic)
      And it's heresies (heres some)
              The Heresy of Peter Waldo

Islam  (Sunni, Shiites)
      And it's heresies (heres some)
             The Khawarij
             The Isma'ilis
             The Druze


        There are variations of practice in Judaism but they in general never came to hostilities or declared heresies during the middle ages.

V.a.3   Undocumentable and "hidden" religions, heretics and pagan persona. Out of Period beliefs (Updated)
             This includes post 13th century Christianity, post 13th century Paganism and post 13th century Heresies (such as The Hussite Heresy, Lollardism, Conciliarism)

Pagans and heretics (see list above) are allowed with documentation, that are 11th-13th century, we are just asking they keep in mind it would be hidden from others while playing your persona , a Cathar would not last long openly addressing it would they? 
Outright fantasy personas, elves, orcs, wizards, ect, are NOT ALLOWED, as we are an educational group.  We have a special hatred for Elf reenactors (Stupid spock ears), Elves need not apply.
After all it's a crusader village in the medieval era.  Keep it intelligent, keep it realistic and remember your not supposed to be a character...but a real person of the era.

V.b     "Magic" and Religion. The two are not the same, Magic seeks to influence while religion is a practice. All personas are encouraged to act religiously as in period, as with christians, jews and muslims did openly without problems, but pagans and heretics would do so hiddenley or attach themselves to local festivals.

V.c     Magic (for those who believe in it) and seek to scare/harm others with it is not allowed for reasons discovered in other groups with similar bans unless being done in a period way. Example alchemy, herbalism,astrology and talismans are very period and acceptable. Post 13th century practices are not. Use judgement and don't freak people out.

V.d    Displaying Religion 

         Most groups have no problem with this, in fact ACRE, Adria and other groups have a "Church" within their groups. Some groups because of some past issues (See V.c) , have adopted a very short sighted opinion that has damaged their credibility and educational legitimacy by ignoring religion. We realize that religion was at the heart of medieval life and period displays of religion are encouraged.  Fighters may be "Blessed" before combat by priests or imams, but may NOT call down curses on enemies unless it's part of a public performance and planned with the event planners and all parties informed before. Unless we are filming or running a faire/show don't curse folks.

V.e     Performance

Now understand it's acting, and acting should not be judged as it's an art.  A religious PERFORMANCE is not a religious practice,it's acting.  A mundane Pagan, or Jew, or Atheist can portray a Bishop, a Priest or Nun. In fact more than a third of the members of the Holy Curia of Ecclesiastical Reenactors are not Christians mundanely. They are actors, but they respect the persona they portray, some are pious and others not as adds drama as long as everyone understands it's acting.

    It's no different than watching a movie where people get married by a "Priest" (who is just an actor) or "blessing" of soldiers in "Kingdom of Heaven" that was just acting.  This is Living history so don't be offended by either side. This does not mean you can't be pious and faithful, of course that's the freedom of art and expressing your faith though the ART of acting will most likely enhance your performance.  Either way it's acting, and an art and is up to the artist to decide their work.

V.e.1        Period Performance (III.b) is encouraged & expected with the Priory & the Church of Tortosa. With the assorted Nuns,Monks and Imams as well as Rabbi and others appropriate to the genre.
V.e.2.       Selling "Relic's", Pilgrims badges & indulgences. This too is allowed with permission of the BOD and the Vidame of Tortosa. (See Church below)

V.f      Bigotry

A sensitive topic, as medievalism enjoys soft sexism of men being "Chivalrous" pulling out ladies chairs and like activities. This is not bigotry in medievalisms eyes..nor is "Character Play", but OOPS (Out Of Persona Situations) when YOUR MUNDANE views show that are either bigoted or racist know that it will not be tolerated.  We don't care about your modern opinions on any religion or church, or race or whatnot. Act as you would in persona and react to others in persona but keep any modern bias away from your persona.

Everyone is mundanely a different religion from each other as those differences should not be addressed at events as it's rude and causes tensions.

V.g     Governing Structure of the Church of Tortosa (Also called the Diocese of Tortosa)

V.g.1.      The Priory of Tortosa is centered on a Priory and as such is ruled by a Prior 
V.g.2.      The Diocese of Tortosa is under a Bishop
V.g.3.      Church Officers. The Bishop is represented by his Vidame, under him are Priests, Monks and Nuns unconnected with the Prioy