Reading the comments to my earlier post about XP requirements, I was fascinated by the discussion of the proposed reasons why clerics might not be very attractive to many players. My fascination is in part based on the fact that I consider clerics to be one of the most potent of all character classes in any edition of Dungeons & Dragons with which I'm familiar. In OD&D, it occupies a kind of middle place between the fighting man and the magic-user, being a tough and skilled melee combatant who's also gifted with (albeit limited) spellcasting ability, not to mention unique power against the undead. Why that wouldn't be more appealing I'm not sure, but then I frequently play clerics.
Some commenters have suggested that the lack of appeal has to do with the perception that clerics are nothing more than "heal-bots," a term borrowed from video games, particularly MMOs. If that's the way clerics are viewed, then I suppose I understand their lack of appeal. In my Dwimmermount campaign, one of the things I tried to stress is that clerics are extraordinary agents of their faiths. They're not priests in the traditional sense and they operate largely outside the hierarchies of their temples. It's a distinction that D&D was very bad at making from the beginning, especially when you look at the level titles used in OD&D and AD&D.
For my campaign, priests (who are a separate, non-adventuring class -- an idea inspired by both Jeff Rients and Rob Conley) handle the day-to-day operation of temples and staff the bureaucracy that support it. Clerics, on the other hand, are special and, for reasons both both obvious and subtle, are sent off into the wider world to act quasi-independently on behalf of their faith. Their level titles (which were inspired in part by Fr Dave's post here) are listed in the Dwimmermount Codex as follows: