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  • Writer's pictureAndrew Comiskey

Foot-Washing: Pierced

Updated: Feb 22

‘I will pour out on you a spirit of grace and supplication…

We will look upon the One we have pierced and will mourn as one grieves for an only child

On that day, I’ll open a fountain to cleanse you from sin and impurity;

on that day, I’ll banish the idols from the land…

On that day, I’ll remove both the prophets and the spirit of impurity from the land…

On that day, every prophet will be ashamed of his prophetic vision.

He will say, “I am not a prophet, I am a farmer.”

When asked about the wounds on his body, he will answer:

“These wounds I was given at the house of my friends’ (Zechariah 12:10-13:6).


We pierce Him over and over with our sins. Yes, He died once, for all sinners. And yes, His wounds still visible bleed red for our pride and rebellion, iniquities visited on us that we in our blindness pass onto others.

His mangling at Calvary reflects our sin-sickness. ‘His face disfigured beyond that of any man, His form marred beyond human likeness’ (Is. 52:14) beckons to the transgender mob that took St. Patrick’s Cathedral by storm last Thursday to ‘honor’ John (original name unknown), a transgender activist.  


Sexually abused and bullied throughout childhood in rural Argentina, John came out as ‘gay,’ headed north and assumed a female persona—Cecilia. He prostituted himself as a sex worker and an actor, playing cartoonish, larger-than-life females (‘Pose’). He fought hard for trans-rights and died young as do most sexually wounded people who mutilate their own bodies and spirits.


We look upon the One that we have pierced. 


The funeral in ‘America’s church’, St. Patrick’s, mocked Jesus. An atheist, John was feted in words and placards as ‘queen mother’ and ‘whore’ in the sanctuary by his many trans-converts. While the priest sang Ave Maria, the crowd belted out ‘Ave Cecilia.’ The crowd seemed unconcerned for his soul; they took over St. Patrick’s to enshrine him as a goddess, their Ashtoreth, whose demons demanded devotion through perverse sexual rites.  


We look upon the One that we have pierced.


Pope Francis may be applauding; is this the Church going to the margins, the Jesus who dined with sinners? Or is the world converting the Church, like zealots of the French Revolution who paraded prostitutes in Notre Dame? In the same autumn that he extended ‘blessing’ to include same-sex couples, Francis gave the trans-identified freedom to be godparents and baptized in their other-sex persona, a false self, if you will. His nearest advisor on LGBTQ+ issues, NYC Jesuit Father James Martin, said of the event: ‘To celebrate the funeral Mass of a transgender woman at St. Patrick’s is a powerful reminder, during Lent, that LGBTQ+ people are as much a part of the church as anyone else…’


And I thought Lent was about conversion.


We look upon the One that we have pierced.


Most of you reading this are horrified. We underline our Bibles and catechisms and worry about our children. Our greatest temptation is to pull a Noah’s Ark—the world is damned, as is much of the Church, so let’s hoard our resources, homeschool till heaven, fortify our paneled homes, and pray away the ‘gay.’ We may even, like the Pharisee, thank God that neither we nor our kids have THOSE problems (Lk. 18:9-14).


We look upon the One that we have pierced.


We will be judged, not as much for our chastity as for the generosity of our mercy toward those, like John, who probably never knew it.         


St. Patrick’s clash asks of us: how do we love the ‘soft’ kid in school who is bullied and abused and tempted by demons to adopt a false self? How much do we pray for and make every effort to keep the conversation going with a beloved adult version of John, a neighbor, a co-worker, a son or daughter, a friend? Do we believe that Jesus and Church can surround such a one as to liberate something truer within so he can shed the drapery and become himself?  


For our unbelief and sloth and self-protection, we look upon the One that we have pierced.


Lent is as much about giving as it is about fasting. Father Martin is not the problem. Nor is Pope Francis. (They are just really confusing.) Our unbelief and smugness and inactivity are. Lent gives us room to repent and do what we can to ensure that our churches are kind clean houses that welcome the fractured and bring them into wholeness through Jesus.


Abbey, Marco, and I just had the privilege of helping a group of priests-to-be (from America’s biggest seminary) become clean and empowered ‘houses’ themselves. Why? So they have real authority to make their future parishes real havens of healing and chastity. Best Lenten gift ever! Jesus is on the move!


No other gods, no other cure—only the Cross discovered by broken people in His beautiful, disfigured face.  


Together ‘we look upon the One that we have pierced.’

Join Andrew on Desert Streaming each week as he dives deeper into his blog. Watch here or listen on Apple, Spotify, or wherever you get your podcasts


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