so.... Was he a priest or wasn't he?

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so.... Was he a priest or wasn't he?

Postby kurt_the_quick » Wed Oct 12, 2005 2:50 am

Originally posted by Garble
originally posted by Bamfette
Later, when Kurt mentioned his ordination to the others, it became clear that it never actually happened, and Jean detected traces of someone tampering with his mind. They went to the Church where Kurt had been studying with Whitney and discovered mutants who had been tortured, experimetned upon and mutilated in the basement. (UXM#423) It turns out that Father Whitney is a CoH operative and they have been tampering with his mind over a long time, for some mysterious 'plan' which will be revealed in #424.


*edit* it's been revealed. here it is, in Chuck Austen's own words, cause it is confusing.

Basic premise: Father Whitney met Kurt and got the idea to use him to bring down the Catholic church. Pope of COH sponsored his research, and use of mutant 13 to mind-control Kurt into becoming pope of the catholic church. The idea being to make "Revelation" the biblical prophecy of the "End of Days," return to heaven, and return of Christ, appear to come true in order to take control of the world. Kurt ruined it by becoming horny, again. Basically, Stacy X screwed their plans by being needy.

The plan: Using Kurt and his "Image Inducer" COH would get Kurt into position as pope, either replacing the existing one, or replacing the successor. At the same time, through Catholic holy wafers, all the "righteous" would "ascend" as they do in "Left Behind." All the wafers and wine and holy water throughout the world would be tainted with a nano-tech piece of hardware that would have a cumulative effect, and have the capacity to be remotely activated, disintegrating "the faithful" and making them appear to have "ascended."

Then Kurt would be revealed as Nightcrawler, right after all the Catholics and religious "right" had disappeared in a flash of "ascension."

It's all based on religion, Revelation, and particularly, the premise of "Left Behind."

The story was to do a kind of anti-"Left Behind." The prophecies of revelation come true, all the "faithful" disappear one day in a flash (because of the holy wafers), and then the head of the church is revealed as the "anti-Christ" (who more devilish looking than Kurt?), and the "Church of Humanity" steps up and takes over, destroying mutants as the scapegoats, and the church as the primary target, all in one fell swoop.


am I the only one who not only found all this confusing, but also somewhat offensive? I love nightcrawler as laity, and as a priest. I'll go with whatever the author wants to do, just because I love the character.

but why did Austen have to muck things up so much? why couldn't he have simply have nightcrawler decide he didn't want to be a priest because of the celibacy thing and the hypocrytical nature of the Church at times? Catholism doesn't even emphasize Relevations all that much. I don't recall it ever being part of the homily/readings from all my years as a little Catholic school girl. it's really more of a Prodestant thing. then there was the whole "holy wafers" thing. it's called the Eucharist. I suppose it really isn't that big a deal, but I had a headache everytime I read that phrase.

Austen really should have done his homework better.
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so.... Was he a priest or wasn't he?

Postby Angelique » Wed Oct 12, 2005 6:08 am

I thought the whole idea of Kurt "studying" to be a priest needed to be better researched. Think about it. Most readers, I'm assuming, know what the word "seminarian" means. (And I never knew a seminarian who wore a collar, at least until he was ordained to the transitional diaconate. And most deacons don't wear the collar, either.) Leaving the priesthood is also never as simple as "read the Breviary" or "you know the way out." (Counseling, extended retreats, and lots of prayer and support would be more typical recommendations for someone in Kurt's situation.)
Seminary would have been extremely difficult along with the demands of being an X-Man. We're talking about years upon years of full-time study.
I could, however, tolerate the CoH plot, because I knew there was nothing realy Catholic about them. What offends me is when people start claiming that the real Catholic Church is full of flat-earthers and bigots.
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so.... Was he a priest or wasn't he?

Postby Saint Kurt » Thu Oct 13, 2005 7:27 am

Originally posted by Angelique
I thought the whole idea of Kurt "studying" to be a priest needed to be better researched.


Actually, if you want to pick nits, his Catholicism needs to be better researched.

If one is to take the comics as totally true to life, then Nightcrawler is easily the most Protestant Catholic on the planet. Everytime he quotes from the bible it's from the King James Version, which for kind of complex liturgical/historical reasons isn't used by the Catholic Church. Whenever they show his bedroom he's always got a giant cross over his bed, but no corpus on it, what Catholic does this? Whenever they show him in a church, he just kind of wanders in and sits down instead of genuflecting... etc. etc. blah blah blah.

But I ignore all of this because on the whole, nothing is ever depicted in comics as it is in reality. I could write a short novel about comics as a visual shorthand and story telling medium or I could just say "read Scott McCloud's Understanding Comics" which is easier for everybody. The point is, Kurt's supposed to be a devout Christian which I definitely get from what I'm shown. I'm totally speculating here, but I think whoever added this aspect to his character chose Catholicism not because of some attachment to that particular faith but more because of the many recognizable symbols and gestures that could be exploited in the visual medium of comics.

Leaving the priesthood is also never as simple as "read the Breviary" or "you know the way out."


Oh Oh Oh! I know this one!

In a moment of randomness about 2 weeks ago I was asked a question by a random student playing a Catholic Trivial Pursuit type game while I walked through the lobby of the university's Newman Center. The question was "How does one leave the priesthood?"

I guessed correctly that while one can choose not to perform their duties - they cannot be "unordained". Once you're a priest you're one for life.

Except that Kurt wasn't really a priest, I think... Oh, I don't know...

I could, however, tolerate the CoH plot, because I knew there was nothing realy Catholic about them.


Same. Lots of people thought The DaVinci Code was real too.

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so.... Was he a priest or wasn't he?

Postby Angelique » Thu Oct 13, 2005 5:26 pm

>Whenever they show his bedroom he's always got a giant cross over his bed, but no corpus on it, what Catholic does this?

Actually, quite a lot, and there's a reason. There are a number of reasons, both cultural and theological, why some Catholics have crosses without the Corpus.
I have a cross in nearly every room in my house, and only two have the corpus. That's two more than my mother has. Number one reason why one of the people I know who's more Catholic than I am is that she believes we should celebrate how Jesus isn't on that cross anymore. The other is that she's Irish Catholic. And how many Celtic crosses do you see with the corpus?
Also, "you know the way out," was the first indicator to me that Kurt wasn't really a priest. Any member of the 99% of the priesthood that's made up of genuinely good men is not let go that easily. (When our pastor, after battling a life-threatening illness, started questioning his ability to continue serving as a priest, he took an extended retreat. And the reaction from the parish is to pray and send lots of letters saying "Come back soon!")
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so.... Was he a priest or wasn't he?

Postby Garble » Fri Nov 04, 2005 11:44 pm

Originally posted by kurt_the_quick
am I the only one who not only found all this confusing, but also somewhat offensive? I love nightcrawler as laity, and as a priest. I'll go with whatever the author wants to do, just because I love the character.

but why did Austen have to muck things up so much? why couldn't he have simply have nightcrawler decide he didn't want to be a priest because of the celibacy thing and the hypocrytical nature of the Church at times? Catholism doesn't even emphasize Relevations all that much. I don't recall it ever being part of the homily/readings from all my years as a little Catholic school girl. it's really more of a Prodestant thing. then there was the whole "holy wafers" thing. it's called the Eucharist. I suppose it really isn't that big a deal, but I had a headache everytime I read that phrase.

Austen really should have done his homework better.

To be fair to Mr. Austen, it was already quite mucky when he got it. The concept of Kurt being a priest was introduced after a "six month gap" of continuity. For a while it actually looked like he had gone from being a fun-loving bachelor to a full priest in 6 months. When Catholics correctly pointed out that you can't become a priest in 6 months, it was adjusted to Priest... in training. But still, there was no explanation of WHY he had made this life altering decision.

Right before Chuck started writing there was a snafu where it was said in continuity that Kurt actually became a priest (despite this not being possible under real Catholic law). At this point, very few people were happy with the idea of Kurt being a priest. So rather than taking the easy road and just ignoring the priesthood debacle, Mr. Austen did his best to satisfy established continuity, priesthood achievement accuracy, and a fan base wanting him to ditch the collar.
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so.... Was he a priest or wasn't he?

Postby Angelique » Sat Nov 05, 2005 6:26 am

> But still, there was no explanation of WHY he had made this life altering decision.

I didn't think any explanation as to why a Catholic man would consider the priesthood to be necessary. But then again, I don't think there's anything particularly unusual about the fact that I considered joining the Benedictines before meeting the man who'd become my husband threw a monkey wrench into those plans.
And the very idea that a priest could not be fun-loving runs clean contrary to everything I've ever known about the priests I've been privileged to know.
It would not have bothered me in the least if Kurt had indeed become a priest. It would not have bothered me if he hadn't. It was how his "studying to be a priest" was handled that bothered me. (That, and the crazy idea that that official Church doctrine is one of young-earth creationism!)
I must give due respect to Austen for trying to do something about this. Even if I personally don't think those books in his run were, in and of themselves, the greatest, I certainly have found them thought provoking, and even a bit inspiring.
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so.... Was he a priest or wasn't he?

Postby Garble » Sat Nov 05, 2005 4:43 pm

Originally posted by Angelique
And the very idea that a priest could not be fun-loving runs clean contrary to everything I've ever known about the priests I've been privileged to know.


Hmmm.. I didn't mean to suggest that priests are all boring or lacking joy.
I just thought it was better to say "fun-loving" than "constantly horny" ;)
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so.... Was he a priest or wasn't he?

Postby Angelique » Sat Nov 05, 2005 8:39 pm

Now there again, there's a difference between being an unlikely ladies' man and being "constantly horny."
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Priestly Vestments or No?

Postby Angelique » Wed Jan 18, 2006 8:17 pm

Well, the biggest boo-boo I noticed was NC officiating at Moira MacTaggert's funeral- wearing the stole. Now, assuming Dr. MacTaggert was non-Catholic and didn't have the Mass of Christian Burial, it might not really matter if Kurt officiated. But having not been ordained, he would not wear the stole. Deacons wear the stole over one shoulder. Priests wear it over both. And Kurt, having not even been ordained a deacon at that point would not wear it at all.
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Priestly Vestments or No?

Postby Saint Kurt » Fri Jan 20, 2006 12:56 am

That whole thing with whether or not Kurt was a priest was so confusing I don't even know if it counts as correct or incorrect.

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Plus that stole looks blue to me which has no liturgical meaning. (And yeah I know about Mary, but the church hasn't officially decreed that as hers. Vestement companies make blue "Marian" chausables etc. to make extra cash.)

It definitely doesn't look purple.

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(edit: fixed image link because I'm a retard...)

[Edited on 20/1/06 by Saint Kurt]
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Priestly Vestments or No?

Postby Angelique » Fri Jan 20, 2006 1:31 am

At the time of Dr. MacTaggert's death, Kurt was most definitely not eligible for any stole.
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Priestly Vestments or No?

Postby Saint Kurt » Fri Jan 20, 2006 2:47 am

Why you're pursuing this so avidly I'm not sure, but you could say that since Kurt was never actually a priest, then he never should have been dressing as one or officiating functions as one.

Including wearing a stole. Even one without liturgical significagance.

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Priestly Vestments or No?

Postby Angelique » Fri Jan 20, 2006 4:02 am

Not really very avid about it. But it was a pretty glaring error.
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Priestly Vestments or No?

Postby NachtcGleiskette » Fri Jan 20, 2006 4:49 pm

Umm....just to pipe in what i understood about the entire priest debacle...

Kurt was never actually a priest, right? It was this grand scheme brought on by these anti mutant people whom I cannot remember....

So, he was never a priest. Ever.

So really, discussion over what he wears is completely irrelevant, because dressing in ANY holy robes was completely wrong for him....
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Priestly Vestments or No?

Postby Angelique » Fri Jan 20, 2006 6:32 pm

Well, actually it would have been more appropriate when he thought he was a priest. If I recall correctly, Dr. MacTaggert's funeral was well before that.
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Priestly Vestments or No?

Postby NachtcGleiskette » Fri Jan 20, 2006 6:50 pm

Originally posted by Angelique
Well, actually it would have been more appropriate when he thought he was a priest. If I recall correctly, Dr. MacTaggert's funeral was well before that.


Apparently not, because at Dr. MacTaggert's funeral, from what we can see in the issue, he is, infact, a priest. I believe that that whole thing was the first of the whole priest thing...

Anywho, I think this thread is about Kurt's participation in the Roman Catholic reliogion and not "lets find as many inconsistancies as possible!"
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so.... Was he a priest or wasn't he?

Postby HoodedMan » Wed Jan 17, 2007 7:38 pm

Originally posted by [insert troll name here]
Why are so many comic book readers uncomfortable with a postive portrayal of religion? Why is it so threatening? Undoing Nightcrawler's pursuit of faith seems cowardly. Is it so difficult to portray faith in a positive light? Almost all major social movements in this country had their foundations in religion (women's suffrage, civil rights movement, etc), so why the hate and intolerance?


I'm not sure of the reason for your post. Where do you see hate and intolerance? Making generalizations about the opinions of comic book readers as a whole is very dangerous, because the audience is very diverse. If you're unhappy he turned out not to be a priest, complain to Marvel, but be aware their decision wasn't driven by 'hate and intolerance'.

Their decision was made because the writers wanted to do something else with him. The same motives underly every change every character undergoes; characters are molded slightly to fit new plots. And sometimes the writers make stupid character changes. Fair enough, but don't accuse them of 'hate and intolerance'.
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so.... Was he a priest or wasn't he?

Postby NachtcGleiskette » Wed Jan 17, 2007 8:09 pm

honestgeorge, rather than posting again, please use the edit button at the top of your post to add more. Also, when quoting please use quote tags {quote}{/quote} (replacing {} with []), or use the button located at the top of the post you are quoting, to avoid confusion.

On the topic of religion, some people simply aren't comfortable with religion. It's not a bad thing, it's just the way it is. Personally, I thought making Nightcrawler a priest was a bit contrived and cliche, but that has nothing to do with my position on religion itself, but the act of making the character a priest. That being said, this isn't the place to discuss whether or not religion is an important part of life or what anyone's beliefs are, this thread is just for discussion of the character and this situation.

If you would like to discuss religion, please make a thread in Off Topic Antics, referably "The Danger Room." :)
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Postby NachtcGleiskette » Wed Jan 17, 2007 8:25 pm

Originally posted by honestgeorge
Wow. My first post and I get insulted (Troll) and told I was posting"wrong."

I agree people are uncomfortable with religion in comics (or religion in general) that was the point of my question. I thought a thread about the character of Nightcrawler being a priest would be the place to pose this question.
And as for cliche, how many other characters out there are priests?
But as I write this I'm thinking it won't be there for long. This board doesn't seem to like "boat rocking."
Sorry if anyone was offended by the question.


Actually, you will find we are a very reasonable board. As for "being told your posting wrong", as the forum administrator, I simply pointed out some ways that you can avoid breaking our rules, and avoid people confusing what you are saying. We have a rule against double posting, and I showed you how to avoid that. I suggest that you take things for that what are, rather than taking the defensive.

I took part of your conversation as asking why people are uncomfortable with religion, and if thats not the case, my mistake. I was just pointing out that here is not the place for that discussion.

However, the reason I find it cliche is because of what he looks like. "Hey, let's make the guy who looks like a demon a priest!" And it was done almost overnight with little to no explanation. I'm not saying it's impossible to do well, I'm saying that taken what we have, it's just not good.
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Postby Saint Kurt » Wed Jan 17, 2007 9:02 pm

I'm pretty baffled by where this is coming from, but hey, I like a good discussion so it's cool. :)

If anything, I think comic book readers are pretty tolerant of almost anything. Look at Preacher - that's a whole comic book about a minister looking for God and it was a huge hit. Or Hellboy - another book that draws on religion like crazy. And I can think of so many books that even if they aren't religious, but draw on the enormous mythology religion gives us. (Sandman, Books of Magic, Fables...)

I'm in the agreement that Nightcrawler's whole priesthood episode was just generally poorly handled - it just wasn't realistic and then the way Austin wrote him out was plain weird. If it was handled well - I would have loved it. In fact, in the role playing game this board hosts I play Nightcrawler as a priest as a sort of "bet" with myself that if it had been done right - it might have been really good. You'll have to ask the other players if I'm winning the bet.

And as for this board - we're tolerant of almost everything as well. I think the admins were just making sure your intentions were good and that the discussion was in the appropriate place. I don't think their intent was to put you on the defensive.

For a further look at our exploration of Nightcrawler's religion check out our FAQ on Catholicsm. And the good debate takes place here.

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so.... Was he a priest or wasn't he?

Postby JSherlock » Wed Jan 17, 2007 9:30 pm

Originally posted by honestgeorge
...And my personal experience with comic book "types" (readers I mean) is that they are fairly intolerant to any Christian view point.
Why?
Maybe they think all Christians are followers of the religious right and what that faction stands for (we're not :) ). I don't really know, but that was the point of the reply...

[Edited on 17/1/07 by honestgeorge]



Please keep Non-NightCrawler religion discussion in the Danger Room, where discussion of Religion and Politics, and other button-pusher topics are welcomed.
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so.... Was he a priest or wasn't he?

Postby kamizzi » Tue Feb 06, 2007 12:43 pm

hmmm... he wasn't a priest. and that was revealed in the first post which was back up by some quotes and references to comics. and thet's all.

the truth is that maybe first writers wanted him to be a priest. so he was. but then one of them thought 'no, we should do sth with him, it's too simple' and he's created all that CoH stuff and theory that Kurt only thought, he was a priest. That 'mind-tempering' was the easiest way to got through 'priest' witout destroing the logic from previous issues.
so it's like everything what happened could have been real. and everyone believed in that as hard as nightcrawler. that's all.

and even if in Magik miniserie he was sitting in a confessional or sth it's like in every comics there are some inaccuracys (show me one without any ;) ) caused by leaving of one artist and coming of other with new ideas.

and even priest can have those hard moments when they ask about the sence of the world, faith, etc.

((that's only my point of view. i needed to write that :) ))

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so.... Was he a priest or wasn't he?

Postby Angelique » Tue Feb 06, 2007 8:41 pm

Actually, the first writers did not intend for Nightcrawler to ever become a priest. Dave Cockrum did not even intend for him to be religious.
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Postby kamizzi » Tue Feb 06, 2007 10:07 pm

aww, i know that, sorry, I should wrote that one writer wanted him to become a priest, so he did. but after some time came another artist and wanted to end with that.

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Postby pignut » Tue Apr 03, 2007 4:26 pm

In the Uncanny Xmen storyline "Days of Future Past" there is a gravestone in the future marked Rev. Wagner which was the first hint I ever saw of his religious tendencies (I'm fairly sure it was Rev. not Father). It was an interesting idea, but the more I saw of the religious Kurt the less I liked the idea. It made him a bit too serious.

Alan Cummings performance in the movie was good, but the religious self harm guilt thing jarred with me a bit. Dave Cockrum's Nightcrawler never slid into obvious angel/devil cliches, he had had faced discrimination all his life, but still had a sense of humour, and he never invited pity. To me the Xmen were about disability issues more than racial issues, they were freaks, and often their powers didn't work the way they wanted them to (Cyclops, Rogue). Nightcrawler had the right vibe for this. The image changer was given to him so he would blend in and he used it to impersonate celebrities for a laugh and then eventually decided to show his real face. A wheelchair bound friend of mine has "batteries not included" tatooed on his knees. "Pi$$ on pity" is a popular disability rights slogan. I don't want to feel pity for Nightcrawler. I prefer Nightcrawler to be impish, but underneath it all level headed with a strong sense of ethics. He should charms his way around the prejudice. He is not the kind of character to get into organised religion - a personal relationship with god, possibly.
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