In The Thorn Birds, Ralph de Bricassart is a devout Catholic and a priest who is ambitious to rise in the church hierarchy. However, he engages in a sinful sexual relationship with Meggie. Unbeknownst to him, this brief affair leads to the birth of their son, Dane. Although Ralph is far from perfect, his fundamental goodness is not seriously questioned. After he becomes a bishop, he resists the Fascist regime in Italy. His reasons for desiring power include personal advancement and that he believes in the positive force that the Church exerts.
In The Kite Runner, the character of Rahim Khan has many similarities to Ralph. he is a person with many positive moral qualities. Although he is not a priest, in his role as an advisor to Amir, he occupies a clergy-like function in providing spiritual guidance about forgiveness. In contrast, the character of Assef seems entirely bad. A violent and abusive child, he grows up into a sadist, vengeful man.
In A Thousand Splendid Suns, Mullah Faizullah shows significant similarities to Ralph. In particular, his role as a religious teacher has connections to Ralph’s vocation of priest. His basic goodness is shown in his guidance of Mariam. On the opposite end of the spectrum is Rasheed, a selfish, greedy, power-hungry bully.