Church Grim

Church Grim

This creature resembles a large, ghostly black dog with glowing red eyes.

Church Grim

XP 200 ()

LG Medium ()

Initiative +2


AC 12

hp: 32 (5d8 + 10)


Speed: fly 40 ft.

Melee Attack—Bite: +4 to hit (reach 5 ft.; one creature). Hit: 1d8 + 2 piercing damage plus 1d6 radiant damage. The church grim gains temporary hit points equal to the radiant damage inflicted, and the target’s maximum hit points are reduced by that amount.


Str 13 (+1), Dex 14 (+2), Con 15 (+2),

Int 12 (+1), Wis 15 (+2), Cha 14 (+2)

Languages: Common

Skills: Perception +4

Senses: Darkvision 60 ft.


Howl: The howl of a church grim forces any evil creature within its limited domain (see below) to make a successful DC 12 Wis saving throw or become frightened for 2d4 rounds. Good or Neutral creatures are unaffected by the howl as long as they are not intending to steal anything or attack the church while inside the church grim’s domain. Once a character succeeds or fails at this saving throw, it need not make another against the same church grim’s howl until after the character takes a long rest.

Incorporeal: A church grim can pass through solid objects such as a wall, or other creatures, as if they were difficult terrain. It takes 1d10 force damage if it is still inside an object at the end of its turn.

Know Alignment: A church grim automatically knows the alignment of any creature that enters its churchyard.

Limited Domain: The realm of a church grim encompasses the churchyard it defends and no more. It can wander freely in its cemetery and any adjoining church grounds, but it can’t move beyond; it must stop at the boundary of consecrated land.

Rejuvenation: It is difficult to destroy a church grim. A slain church grim restores itself to full health after lying “dead” for 24 hours. The only sure way to get rid of a church grim permanently is to raze the church it protects and desecrate the churchyard so it is no longer consecrated land.

Soul Defender: It is the sacred duty of a church grim to defend the bodies and souls of those buried in its churchyard. Casting animate dead or a similar spell within the confines of a church grim’s domain requires a successful DC 15 concentration check by the caster. If the check fails, the spell slot fizzles away just as if it had been cast. Whether the check succeeds or not, the caster immediately attracts the attention and the wrath of the church grim.


Environment: Any graveyard or cemetery

Organization: Solitary

Church grims are good spirits that guard cemeteries from those who seek to steal from graves, reanimate the dead, or desecrate the sanctity of the graves there in any other way. The eyes of a church grim see all evil that crosses into its territory, and it has no mercy for such trespassers. The precinct of a church grim is the cemetery and church it has chosen to protect; it can’t leave that holy ground for any reason. A church grim can’t be destroyed without also destroying the place it protects. If dispatched, a church grim returns 24 hours later to resume its duties.

Only churches or temples dedicated to good deities attract the service of a church grim guardian. The holier the locale, the more likely a church grim is to be present.

Often, these entities are not well understood even by those who serve in the churches protected by church grims. Many pastors and deacons speak fearfully of “a ghostly hound” that prowls the ground around their churches without realizing that the spectral being they fear means them no harm and will protect their temple more ferociously and more tenaciously than any real guard dog could.

A church grim does not attack or harm anyone who enters the churchyard or the cemetery to worship, pay their respects, and go about normal business. It only attacks evil creatures and those who intend to rob from the dead. Church grims also attack undead creatures on sight.