The Abandoned An’ Forsaked – Nightcrawler was a Priest?

by  in Comic News Comment
The Abandoned An’ Forsaked – Nightcrawler was a Priest?

Every week, we will be examining comic book stories and ideas that were not only abandoned, but also had the stories/plots specifically “overturned” by a later writer (as if they were a legal precedent). Click here for an archive of all the previous editions of The Abandoned An’ Forsaked. Feel free to e-mail me at if you have any suggestions for future editions of this feature.

I got tired of doing these specifically about retconned deaths, so I’m finished with that series of posts (not that I won’t have future editions also involving retconned deaths, of course, just not as a series of posts ONLY about that). Today we take a look at the time when Nightcrawler of the X-Men became a Catholic priest!

Under Chris Claremont, Kurt “Nightcrawler” Wagner of the X-Men was always a follower of the Roman Catholic religion (if not always adherent to all of the rules, like the whole “no sex before marriage” stuff, which makes him similar to about 99% of all Catholics in the U.S.). However, in X-Men #100, celebrating Claremont’s return to writing the X-Men full-time, he opened the issue with a bit of a shocker to readers…Nightcrawler is a priest!

Nightcrawler is attacked by some bad guys and he teleports away, while they’re hunting him down. He thinks about his time as a priest-in-training…

The following issue, after finding Dr. Cecilia Reyes for assistance, Kurt discusses his path in life a little bit more (Claremont’s first issue of X-Men was supposed to follow a six-month gap between his first issue and the issue before he took over, to explain why so many things were different with the team)…

In Joe Casey’s Uncanny X-Men run, Nightcrawler mentions that he is now an ordained priest…

In the Nightcrawler mini-series from around this time, Kurt’s time as a priest is addressed, as we meet his mentor, Father Whitney.

However, in Uncanny X-Men #423, Chuck Austen reveals that Kurt was never an ordained priest. It was all a matter of some bad guys messing with his mind…

Father Whitney is revealed to have been in on it all along. It was all part of an elaborate plan that I addressed in this week’s I Love Ya But You’re Strange.

The long and short of it is that Nightcrawler’s time as a priest was abandoned and forsaked.