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"God gave us free will, Matthew. Adam and Eve were not puppets, and neither are we. We make our own choices. That's one reason we pray, for help making good ones."
―Paul Lantom to Matt Murdock[src]

Rev. Father Paul Lantom was a priest of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of New York in New York City who had offered up moral guidance and confession to those who come to him, including Matt Murdock, whose identity as Daredevil Lantom identified and kept secret. Lantom had still continued to offer assistance to Murdock throughout his vigilante missions, as he and Maggie Grace nursed Murdock back to health in the aftermath of the Destruction of Midland Circle. However, when Murdock discovered that Grace was his long lost mother and Lantom had known this, he abandoned Lantom and his faith. Lantom still offered help to his community, offering to provide shelter to Karen Page when she was targeted by Kingpin, but this resulted in Benjamin Poindexter being sent to assassinate Page under Kingpin's orders, killing Lantom in the process.

Biography

Early Life

Charity Work Overseas

"Years later, I was in Rwanda trying to help local churches provide aid and sanctuary to refugees. I'd become close with the village elder, Gahiji. He and his family had the respect of everybody, Hutu and Tutsi alike. He'd helped them all through famines, disease."
―Paul Lantom to Matt Murdock[src]

As a young preacher, Lantom always perceived himself to be more skeptical than others in his faith, and often debated his peers. He contended that the devil was inconsequential, as he translated the Hebrew word for Satan as an adversary, which everyone had their own, rather than the single bringer of evil. Years later, however, while overseas in Rwanda trying to help local churches provide food and care for people, he became friends with Gahiji. Lantom witnessed local gangs murdering all the neighbors, but none would raise their swords to Gahiji. When soldiers were sent in to kill him, none of them wanted to kill him. That commander arranged to met Gahiji and brutally murdered him and his entire family in front of his village.[1]

Helping Maggie Grace

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Lantom takes Maggie Grace to the church

"I don't know what I should've done. I guess that's not really true."
"You know, when I heard Maggie call me her son, my thought was my first thought was how stupid I'd been. That it had been right in front of me for so long. And then I remembered that it had been in front of you for even longer. From, from the beginning."
―Paul Lantom and Matt Murdock[src]

During his time as a priest at the Clinton Church, Lantom had closely befriended Maggie Grace, a nun at Saint Agnes Orphanage. Lantom was informed by Ingrid and Ellen that Grace, following an unexpected whirlwind romance, had resigned as a nun and married a boxer named Jack Murdock. However, when Grace had given birth to her son, she began to suffer from a case of postpartum depression, as she believed she had turned away from God in marrying Murdock.

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Lantom being forced to leave Jack Murdock

As Grace's depression had led to her leaving her son crying for hours on end, while she remained motionless, Lantom was then contacted by Murdock who desperately asked for his help, unsure of what had happened to his wife's mental health. Together with Ingrid and Ellen, Lantom came to Murdock Residence where he found Grace and took her back into the church, leaving Murdock alone with their son. As he and Grace left to help her rejoin their church, Lantom and Murdock had shared a final look, as Murdock held his son, with Lantom unsure of wether he was doing the right thing and left without a word.[2]

Speaking with Matt Murdock

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Lantom greeting Matt Murdock at their church

"You feel God is neglecting you? Matthew, the burning-bush business doesn't happen very often, even in the Bible. He's usually more subtle than that. You want to hear God, Matthew, you have to listen more carefully. Because he speaks in whispers."
―Paul Lantom to Matt Murdock[src]

Once Lantom learned Matt Murdock had tragically lost his father in the wake of a bad deal made with Roscoe Sweeney, he arranged to have Murdock moved into the Saint Agnes Orphanage where Maggie Grace was taking care of him. However, Grace had asked Lantom to keep the fact that she is Murdock's mother a secret, since she did not believe that she could be a good mother for him. Despite still being uncertain of this decision, Lantom agreed to keep her secret but prayed for Grace so she could reveal it to Murdock herself.[2]

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Lantom has another talk with Matt Murdock

Despite him having lost his sight in an car accident, Lantom learned that Murdock had developed remarkable fighting abilities as well as enhanced senses, allowing him to beat up several other boys at the Church. Having been informed by Sister Dora that Murdock got into yet another fight, Lantom went to speak with Murdock while he was practicing with his walking stick, telling Murdock that his fighting had to stop. While Murdock debated with Lantom about if he could skip Sister Dora's class on catechism as he knew more than her, Lantom insisted that he could not and invited Murdock to sit with him.

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Lantom and Matt Murdock discuss his fighting

Sitting down together, Lantom questioned how many fights Murdock had been during that week, noting that no one had complained about them since nobody wanted to admit that they had been beaten up by the blind kid. While Murdock noted that Lantom could not prove that he had done anything wrong, Lantom simply insisted that he was not looking to prove anything, noting that Murdock had this skill for being argumentative and this could actually be a sign. While Murdock then questioned what Lantom meant by this, Lantom had explained that it could be a sign that Murdock still had a lot of anger inside of him.

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Lantom giving Matt Murdock advise on anger

Lantom insisted that Murdock being angry was still understandable, he also insisted that it was not sustainable, noting that he needed to find a way to harness all his anger before it destroyed him, although Murdock suggested that this could simply be God's plan for him. As Murdock said this, Lantom sighed and claimed that Murdock did not understand Original Sin after all, explaining that they were not profits and needed to make their own choices. Murdock claimed God never answered this prayers, to which Lantom had explained that God was more subtle as he needed to look for answers in God's whispers.[3]

Offering Advice

Matt Murdock's Confession

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Lantom during confession with Matt Murdock

"Perhaps this would be easier if you told me what you've done."
"I'm not seeking penance for what I've done, Father. I'm asking forgiveness, for what I'm about to do."
"That's not how this works. What exactly are you going to do?"
―Paul Lantom and Matt Murdock[src]

Years later, Matt Murdock attended Clinton Church for confessions and Lantom's advice. Visiting Lantom again, Murdock spoke to him about his past and his father, who Murdock claimed was the boxer who was known for not ever backing down from his fights. Seeing that Murdock was not telling him what he had done that needed to be confessed, Murdock however told him that he was not seeking forgiveness for what he had done, but instead was asking forgiveness for what he was about to do, which greatly unnerved Lantom.[4]

Murdock's Return

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Lantom finding Matt Murdock sitting outside

"I make a heck of a latte if you're interested."
"Some other time, maybe."
"Seemed you had a lot on your mind last time you were here. Sure you don't want that latte?"
―Paul Lantom and Matt Murdock[src]

Just a few days later, Lantom had found Matt Murdock sitting outside Clinton Church, covered with several more heavy bruises on his face. Surprised to see Murdock back there, Lantom sat with Murdock and told him that he knew he was Jack Murdock's child, however, Lantom also assured him that through their seal of the confession booth he was sworn never to tell anyone whatever Murdock had spoken to him about, and noting that Murdock could confess to multiple murders and yet Lantom would still not be allowed to tell anyone else.

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Lantom has a conversation with Matt Murdock

Murdock questioned if Lantom thought this was fair, to which Lantom casually noted that it was what it was and it would not be changing anytime soon. Seemingly not willing to have this conversation with Lantom outside of confession, Murdock told him that he had to get back to work, Lantom had noted that he needed to return to his own work as well but commented that he could do with his cup of coffee first. Lantom went on to tell Murdock all about the new coffee maker that had been donated to the church and offered to make Murdock a Latte so they could have a chance to talk more openly together.

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Lantom offering up a coffee to Matt Murdock

Although he took a moment to consider the offer, Murdock, however, turned down the coffee, noting that he might take Lantom up on the offer some other time when he needed to talk to someone about his problems. While Murdock collected his walking stick and prepared to walk through New York City back into his Office, Lantom commented that Murdock had seemed to have a lot on his mind when he came to confession and spoken to him, as Lantom had then made a final offer to Murdock to come to join him inside the church for a cup of coffee, however, Murdock simply told Lantom to take care of himself, before walking away, leaving Lantom sat alone on the bench outside.[5]

Early Morning Latte

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Lantom finds Matt Murdock waiting to see him

"Do you believe in the Devil, Father?"
"You mean as a concept?"
"No. Do you believe he exists, in this world, among us?"
Matt Murdock and Paul Lantom[src]

As Lantom was arriving back at Clinton Church to continue his work, he found that Matt Murdock was once again sitting outside on the cathedral's bench waiting for him, as Lantom commented that he had begun to wonder if Murdock would ever come back to their church as he had not seen him in several weeks. As Murdock claimed that he had been busy, Lantom told him that he would be inside of the church if Murdock had then decided that he wanted to take confession.

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Lantom offering a coffee to Matt Murdock

This time, however, as Lantom collected his bag and prepared to go inside, Murdock awkwardly asked if he could still accept Lantom's offer for a latte. Knowing that Murdock was a complicated man who clearly wanted to have a more meaningful discussion with him rather than a confession, Lantom agreed as they entered the church and Lantom made lattes for them both, asking if Murdock took sugar in his coffee which he turned down. Lantom then questioned what was on Murdock's mind, while making it clear that he remembered Jack Murdock from his career as a boxer within Hell's Kitchen.

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Lantom and Matt Murdock having their coffee

Lantom made it clear that he would still keep all of Murdock's secrets even if told to him outside of confession, before Murdock then asked Lantom if he believed in the devil, not just as a concept, but also as a figure who lived among them, as Lantom question if Murdock wanted a short answer or a long one, to which Murdock insisted that he only wanted to get the truth. Taking a moment to consider his response, Lantom then told Murdock how he had been more of a skeptic while training to be a priest since he used to believe the devil was a minor player in their faith, which Murdock joked was not very Catholic.

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Lantom and Matt Murdock discuss the devil

Lantom defended this concept of the devil's significance in their faith by noting how the Bible's word for Satan would actually translate into adversary or antagonist, and that the bible had been reinterpreted to see this as being about a single entity of pure evil, which Lantom had thought had been propaganda to just drive people into the church. Murdock questioned if all this meant that Lantom did not believe that the devil existed, but Lantom had insisted that he was not yet done talking, as he told Murdock how years later he was in Rwanda doing charity work to provide churches and aid for the refugees.

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Lantom tells the story of Gahiji's brutal murder

Lantom explained how while he was overseas he had become close friends with a village elder named Gahiji who had the respect of all the tribes. Going on, Lantom explained how the militia would force the tribes to murder their neighbors and when Gahiji tried to step in, he was brutally murdered by the militia's commander along with his entire family. Lantom had explained to Murdock how he had seen the devil in the eyes of that man who had killed Gahiji. Murdock asked him what he would have done if he could have stopped him hurting anyone, but he still refused to explain what exactly he meant.[1]

Murdock's Conflict

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Lantom is visited by Matt Murdock in church

"Another man's evil does not make you good. Men have used the atrocities of their enemies to justify their own throughout history. So the question you have to ask yourself is, are you struggling with the fact that you don't wanna kill this man but have to? Or that you don't have to kill him but want to?"
―Paul Lantom to Matt Murdock[src]

While he was sitting inside of Clinton Church and looking at the statue of Jesus Christ, Lantom was visited by Matt Murdock who was seeking guidance. Lantom spoke about his relationship with Jesus, noting how he liked to take a moment with just him and Jesus, before asking Murdock how he knew that he was there, which Murdock did not answer. Lantom asked if he had done anything foolish, but Murdock had insisted that he had not done anything yet.

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Lantom having a debate with Matt Murdock

Murdock told Lantom how he went to visit someone who was close to the devil, explaining that he did not want to hurt them but to learn more about his enemy and how he could hurt the devil himself. When Lantom questioned what happened during their meeting, Murdock had explained that had learned that the devil had someone he loved and who loved him. Lantom tried to convince Murdock to leave the judgment and punishment up to God as the murder was not in his heart and, as Murdock asked how Lantom could know this, Lantom noted that Murdock came to church for his mind to be changed.

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Lantom and Murdock discuss killing the devil

They were interrupted as Foggy Nelson called Murdock, but he just ignored the call. Murdock argued that although his soul was damned if he killed the man, he could not stand back and watch as the devil destroyed New York City. Lantom suggested that Murdock's struggle was not that he needed to kill the devil, but that he wanted to and did not have to, commenting that another man's evil would not make him a good man. Lantom quoted the Bible to argue that committing that act of murder would poison Murdock's soul, and noted that Murdock was looking for a reason not to kill the devil and damn his soul.[1]

The Devil Within Murdock

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Lantom finds Matt Murdock waiting to see him

"You're being called to summon up the better angels of your nature. Maybe that's the struggle you're feeling deep within you."
"And how do you know that the Devil and the angels inside me aren't the same thing?"
"I don't, but nothing drives people to the church faster than the thought of the Devil snapping at their heels."
―Paul Lantom and Matt Murdock[src]

Arriving back at Clinton Church, Lantom this time had soon found Matt Murdock was waiting for him inside his church, now with noticeable injuries to his face. Lantom then noted that the morning service had already taken place some hours earlier, which Murdock said that he knew as Lantom offered Murdock either a confession or Latte, but Murdock simply refused both, as Lantom had jokingly noted that this was likely for the best as he had already had four cups of coffee, which Murdock smiled at.

The Path of the Righteous

Lantom offering his counsel to Matt Murdock

Taking note of all of his new injuries, Lantom had then questioned if what they had discussed last time had not gone so well before then questioning if Murdock had done what he said he would do, to which Murdock revealed that he did not kill that Devil they had discussed earlier although he made an attempt. Lantom questioned if Murdock was disappointed that he had failed to kill the devil or if he was now in fact relieved. Instead of answering the question, Murdock instead explained how a friend of his told him if he continued all of the work he was doing, he would eventually end up bloody and alone.

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Lantom and Murdock discuss his vigilantism

When Lantom questioned if Murdock believed what his friend had said, Murdock had claimed that he was not afraid of dying, to which Lantom noted that a lot of people felt that way, as they were more afraid of living in this world. When Murdock questioned how much Lantom knew about him, Lantom simply confirmed that he knew that Murdock was indeed the Man in the Mask who had been going out and brutally attacking criminals including the Russian Mafia at night, noting that he would not tell anybody Murdock's secret although he did not know how he was able to do it despite his blindness.

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Lantom explains his concept of God's plan

Commenting on how he was blinded during a car crash as a child, Murdock told Lantom how he had previously believed it had simply been God's plan, although he then questioned why God had put the devil within him, which was making him question his faith. Lantom suggested that Murdock was instead being called to summon up the better angels of his nature. Lantom then discussed the concept that the Devil was a symbol created by God to drive the people to church through fear, as well as being a warning to all of his followers to tread the path of the righteous, which Murdock quietly considered.[6]

Ben Urich's Funeral

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Lantom praying during Ben Urich's funeral

"How are you holding up?"
"Like a good Catholic boy."
"That bad, huh?
"He was a good man, and he's gone."
―Paul Lantom and Matt Murdock[src]

Following the discovered that Ben Urich had been brutally strangled to death inside his own Apartment by an unknown attacker, Lantom personally held a funeral service for him which had been attended by Urich's friends and coworkers from the New York Bulletin, including Mitchell Ellison. While Lantom read from the bible, Urich's coffin was carried into the graveyard by Silvio while his friends and family mourned his passing.

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Lantom and Murdock at Ben Urich's funeral

Following the service Lantom approached Matt Murdock and asked how he was holding up after the death of Urich, to which Murdock jokingly commented he was doing as well as any good Catholic boy would be doing. Murdock made it clear that he felt responsible for Urich's death as he had failed to stop Wilson Fisk who he believed had murdered Urich, although Lantom insisted that Murdock could not blame himself, commenting on how much Murdock had done to try to stop Fisk. Lantom then watched as Karen Page then collected Murdock as they proceeded to leave Urich's funeral together.[7]

Grotto's Funeral

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Lantom gives his speech at Grotto's funeral

"Guilt can be a good thing. It's the soul's call to action. The indication that something is wrong. The only way to rid your heart of it is to correct your mistakes and keep going until amends are made. I don't know what you didn't do or what you should have done, but the guilt... the guilt means your work is not yet finished."
―Paul Lantom to Matt Murdock[src]

A few months later, Father Lantom was called upon to preside over the funeral of Grotto, a driver in the Kitchen Irish who was briefly a client of Nelson and Murdock, but who was killed by the Punisher for his murder of an old lady who was in the apartment of another man he killed. With Grotto having been cremated Lantom provided the service, which was attended only by Matt Murdock, Foggy Nelson and Karen Page who had all wished to pay their respects.

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Lantom gives a sermon about Grotto's life

In his eulogy, Lantom described Grotto as a man who was looking for redemption but kept making the wrong choices in his life, as he also noted that one thing Grotto never was, was a saint but described him as a deeply flawed man. Lantom explained how every Sunday he had witnessed Grotto coming to Clinton Church to sit alone at the back, before donating every bit of money he had, once including a Rolex watch, to the church in the hope of finding some redemption which would never come for him. Lantom noted that Grotto had died in the darkness of his soul with nobody to mourn his death.

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Lantom and Matt Murdock discussing Grotto

Lantom finished his service by commenting on how Grotto may have been a life lost, but every life was built on the connections made in it. Following the service, Lantom spoke with Page who commented that although they did not know Grotto well, they did not like the idea of anybody dying alone before they commented on the violence in New York City between the Irish and Dogs of Hell fighting the Punisher. As Nelson and Page left the church to return to the office, Murdock had stayed behind to speak with Lantom in private, as he told Lantom of the guilt he was feeling over not being able to save Grotto's life.

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Lantom discusses the guilt Murdock is feeling

As Murdock had still claimed that Grotto's sudden death was not his fault as Frank Castle had just come into New York seeking to rid the city of the criminals. Murdock noted that he did everything he could to protect Grotto and had failed, as Lantom commented that at least Murdock had tried to save him, as Murdock asked for forgiveness for not doing more to save Grotto. Lantom counseled Murdock that guilt could be a good thing, a soul's call to action, while Lantom had also suggested to Murdock that the guilt he felt meant that his work was not yet finished as it was actually Murdock's call to action.[8]

Matt Murdock's Regrets

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Lantom taking Matt Murdock's confession

"You're not abandoning Elektra, you don't have it in you. What you're doing, we call that moving on. Purgatory is a place for the dead, Matthew, not the living. There's nothing wrong with letting people go. She'll find her peace. I pray you find yours as well."
―Paul Lantom to Matt Murdock[src]

Three days after his last confession, Matt Murdock returned back to Lantom to tell him he had lied to Karen Page that he was not missing his life as Daredevil, to which Lantom told him that acknowledging a lie was often the best way of finding the truth, and that this lie was a sign of Murdock's indecision, as he clearly wanted to return to being a hero for New York City. Lantom had then encouraged him to open up his heart for God to help him, even if his heart was damaged as Murdock claimed.

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Lantom and Murdock discuss Elektra's death

Speaking to him frankly, Lantom had then simply asked Murdock if he missed the life as Daredevil or did he miss Elektra who had been killed by Nobu Yoshioka during one of his vigilante missions he had done with her by his side, although Murdock confessed that although he missed her, he also knew that Elektra brought out the worst in him. Lantom and Murdock then discussed if Elektra would accept his new life or if she would say he abandoned it. Lantom told Murdock that he needed to let her go and he prayed he would find his peace, noting he was not abandoning Elektra but simply moving on.[9]

Return of Daredevil

Matt Murdock's Recovery

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Lantom tells Maggie Grace to not call anyone

"He's one of ours, Maggie. What other choice did I have?"
"Metro-General maybe? Call 911."
"He's a vigilante. If he goes to a hospital, the police will arrest him."
―Paul Lantom and Maggie Grace[src]

As he continued serve at Clinton Church, Lantom unexpectedly had found himself being forced to care for Matt Murdock,[10] who was almost crushed to death under Midland Circle while he was battling the Hand.[11] As Murdock's injuries were being treated by the nuns at the church, Lantom spoke with Maggie Grace about the situation, as she suggested that they take him to Metro-General Hospital, although Lantom insisted that as Murdock was Daredevil he would be immediately arrested.

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Lantom talks to Matt Murdock on his recovery

To keep Grace from calling the New York City Police Department of the situation, Lantom then noted that Murdock was the son of Jack Murdock,[10] realizing this was her child,[2] agreeing not to call up the police. Eventually, Murdock woken from this near death experience, continuing to ask what had happened to Elektra, as Lantom went to visit him and learnt that Murdock's heightened senses had all been damaged during the explosion, as Murdock failed to hear Lantom as he entered the room. Lantom promised Murdock that the nuns knew he was Daredevil but had all been sworn into secrecy by Grace.

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Lantom listens to Matt Murdock about Elektra

While commenting on how Grace had also sworn at him for bringing Murdock into the church, Lantom then offered Murdock to chance to join them for their morning service or to just talk there. Murdock then informed Lantom that Elektra had been with him as the building had collapsed on top of them, although Lantom insisted that Elektra had been killed by Nobu Yoshioka months earlier. However, as Murdock explained that while it seemed insane, Elektra had been resurrected and returned to him, although he no longer knew what had happened to her, as Lantom noted that nobody was seen leaving that site.

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Lantom offers Matt Murdock a chance to talk

Although Lantom had offered Murdock the chance to join him for the church service, Murdock had still refused. Seeing his state, Lantom commented to Murdock that while he struggled with the concept and the supernatural and was more of a realist than most people in their church, he had still viewed Murdock's survival as a miracle. However, Murdock then turned away from Lantom as he noted how in the past others would have come to Lantom with questions, he simply wanted Lantom to give it a rest and leave him alone. Accepting that, Lantom promised that he would be close by if Murdock had needed him.[10]

Rebuilding the Daredevil

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Lantom and Maggie Grace help Matt Murdock

"I am not comfortable with that idea."
"Now you're uncomfortable? Heal the body and the spirit will follow."
"It's the other way around."
"He needs this. It's the only damn thing that's gotten him out of bed. So please just do it."
―Paul Lantom and Maggie Grace[src]

Once Matt Murdock had recovered his strength, Lantom and Maggie Grace had agreed to find somewhere for him to sleep which would keep him out of the way of the children who would often try and visit him. Going under Clinton Church, Murdock briefly stopped to question what music he could just about hear, as Lantom had then explained that due to burst plumbing they were sharing the space with a mosque as New York City communities looked out of each other.

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Lantom watches Matt Murdock practicing

Lantom left Grace to assist Murdock while he continued serving their community, until Murdock had managed to unblock his senses and regained all his sensitive hearing, allowing him to walk freely despite being blind once again. As Murdock rebuilt his strength and abilities, he requested that Lantom bring him somebody to train against, as he used punch bags to rebuild his broken muscles. As they watched his training, Lantom noted to Grace how he was uncomfortable with the concept, although Grace had simply insisted that this was something that Murdock needed to rebuild his confidence and will to live.

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Lantom watches Matt Murdock fight someone

As requested, Lantom then arranged for a boxer to come to Clinton Church and spar with Murdock, as Lantom reminded the boxer that part of their deal was that he would not tell another soul about what happened. Although the boxer had been initially concerned over the morality of boxing against a blind man, Lantom insisted that it was alright as he and Grace stood by. Although Murdock initially did well in the fight, with Lantom having to spot the fight, when Murdock was hit in the head during the second round, all his senses were knocked out again, which causing him to lose the fight.[10]

Daredevil's Loss of Faith

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Lantom is visited again by Matt Murdock

"You believe your calling to do what you do was a mistake?"
"I was deluding myself."
"Maybe that's a good thing to realize, Matthew. Maybe it's time for you to stop."
―Paul Lantom and Matt Murdock[src]

While he was packing away the bibles in Clinton Church, Lantom had found Matt Murdock walking around, while Murdock was recalling his time as a child in the church. As Lantom commented on how he was happy to see him upstairs, Murdock then noted that he used to listen to people's prayers in the church and the streets on New York City, also commenting that no matter what was being asked for, the prayers would always be the same, questioning if God had allowed him to hear all these prayers so he could answer them for him.

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Lantom listens to Matt Murdock's statements

Murdock told Lantom that he became Daredevil in order to help the people, although he claimed that he was not the same hero anymore, noting that he did not have the same abilities, although Lantom then insisted that Murdock needed to give his body more time to heal as Lantom promised that he would readjust to his new reality. However, Murdock expressed his loss of faith by noting that all he ever heard in these prayers was pain, while God gave nothing but silence. Lantom questioned if Murdock's calling had been a mistake, as Murdock had claimed that he had been deluding himself by becoming Daredevil.

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Lantom talks to Matt Murdock about living life

Lantom suggested that this could be a good thing for him to realize at last, so that he could finally stop endangering his life as Daredevil and live a peaceful life. However, Murdock scoffed at this suggestion, claiming that his only delusions was that he had believed that God had anything to do with his mission to become Daredevil and battle corruption within the City. While Lantom listened nervously, Murdock claimed that although he was not as capable as he once was, he was still Daredevil and not even God could stop him now. Lantom looked on as Murdock had then walked away, unsure of his intentions.[3]

Confronted by Murdock

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Lantom being confronted by Matt Murdock

"I prayed for Maggie to find it in herself to tell you years ago."
"She couldn't find it in herself to walk nine blocks to visit me as a kid. Or to comfort me when my father was murdered and I thought that... I knew that I was alone in this world."
"You were never alone."
―Paul Lantom and Matt Murdock[src]

While going out for his drink at Duke's Pool Hall, Lantom played pool with another drinker, who beat him as Lantom then questioned if he wanted to up their bet. While Lantom offered to double the other man's money, he was interrupted by the arrival of Matt Murdock, who then questioned if Lantom knew the truth about Maggie Grace being his mother, much to the shock of Lantom who sat on the pool table, which had confirmed to Murdock that he did know all along.

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Lantom listening to Matt Murdock's reasons

Lantom insisted to Murdock that he could not tell him the truth, even when he wanted to, to which Murdock insisted that Lantom could not hide behind his dog collar anymore, before Lantom had told the other drinker to take his money and leave. Insisting that he was not hiding from the truth, Lantom listened as Murdock confronted him about all the years that he had been in Saint Agnes Orphanage and looked to Lantom for guidance, noting how Lantom had chosen to hide the one thing that could have comforted him, as Murdock begged Lantom to explain why he had kept the truth about his mother from him.

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Lantom talks about Maggie Grace's decisions

Seeing Murdock's pain, Lantom claimed that he had always prayed that Grace would find the strength to tell him the truth years ago, but Murdock remained furious that she never found the strength to visit him, or comfort him when his father was murdered, then noting that he had felt alone in the world at that time. Although Lantom insisted that Murdock was never truly alone, Murdock furiously told him that he was, commenting that Lantom had allowed him to believe that, as Lantom reluctantly confirmed this. As Murdock demanded the truth, Lantom tried to defend her, noting that she was a good person.

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Lantom admitting to no input on the situation

As Lantom insisted that despite all her many flaws, Grace committed herself to making amends for her mistakes, as Murdock noted that Lantom still had not told him why this secret had been kept from him. Noting that Murdock needed to understand his mother as a person, Lantom had told him how she had left Clinton Church when she had met Jack Murdock and fell in love, while explaining how Grace had suffered from postpartum depression and was forced to return to the church, leaving Murdock in his father's care. Lantom confessed that he was still unsure of what he should have done in that situation.

PLantomBeingToldToBeShamed

Lantom being shamed for his past decisions

Murdock noted that he had felt stupid when he had overheard Grace referring to him as her son, as this truth had been in front of him for so long. However, Murdock then noted how he had remembered that Lantom knew this truth for longer and despite all of their discussions about his truth as well as God's truth, Murdock now felt that all these conversations had felt like the lie because of what Lantom kept from him. As Murdock stood up, he placed his hand on Lantom's shoulder and expressed his disappointment in his mentor before walking out, leaving Lantom alone and feeling utter shame for his decisions.

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Lantom telling Maggie Grace about the truth

Having seemingly destroyed his relationship with Murdock for good, Lantom had then returned to Clinton Church where he found Grace offering support for Marcus. Once Marcus then left, Lantom spoke with Grace, who had immediately noticed that he appeared to be in distress as she then questioned what was wrong. With great regret, Lantom then informed Grace that Murdock knew the truth about her, as Grace ran past Lantom to see if Murdock was still in their Church, as she reacted in horror and shame upon realizing that Murdock had already gone and it was unlikely that she would see him again.[2]

Meeting Karen Page

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Lantom bringing Karen Page food in her room

"I'm getting ready to say mass. You could come up if you'd like."
"No, no. Thank you. I'm not Catholic."
"Hell, if you get strict about that, neither are most of the people who come here. That doesn't mean you shouldn't join us. A little ritual, a little ancient wisdom. Not the worst medicine for a troubled soul."
―Paul Lantom and Karen Page[src]

As Lantom had heard that Maggie Grace had allowed Karen Page to stay at Clinton Church for her own safety, he went downstairs with tea and sandwiches for her, only to find Page hiding out of sight until she could see that Lantom was not a threat to her. Lantom questioned if Page was okay, to which she asked if it would offend him if she said that she could not wait to be gone from there, as Lantom assured her that Grace was working on getting her somewhere safe.

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Lantom talks to Karen Page about her safety

Despite Lantom's assurances, Page remained unconvinced that she would be safe as Wilson Fisk wanted her dead. To try and calm her, Lantom invited Page to join him for mass, although Page noted that she was not Catholic. However, Lantom then noted that most of the people that came to the church were not Catholic either, noting that the ritual and ancient wisdom could be good for her soul. Page had smiled at this and questioned if she was that transparent, as Lantom noted that everyone was fighting a battle that other people could not see, but made it clear that he understood her current suffering.

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Lantom discussing failing a person's decisions

Sitting beside her, Lantom listened as Page had questioned what she should do when you realize that you have lost, as she knew that she had failed in her mission to expose Fisk as the criminal. Lantom then thought about this for a moment, before telling Page about how Matt Murdock had come to speak with him recently, upon discovering the truth about his parents, and now blamed Lantom for the choices he had made in not revealing the truth about his mother to him. Lantom then explained that while he could not argue with Murdock about his feelings over this, he could only try and find a way to live with it.

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Lantom advises Karen Page to believe in faith

Page asked Lantom how he lived with all this guilt of knowing that he had hurt someone that he cared about, to which Lantom told her that she had to realize that whatever she had done, or had failed to do, it could still be redeemed. Despite Lantom's advice, Page told him that while it was nice she was not sure that she could believe it, although Lantom told her that everything would all be okay in the end, and if it was not okay then it was not the end, confirming that this was a John Lennon quote which made Page smile. With that, Lantom then got on his feet and once again invited Page to come upstairs to mass.[12]

Noble Sacrifice

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Lantom gives his service to his church goers

"We are being told that we are not strong, that we are not safe. Yet here we are. Stronger, because we will not accept that we are weak. Safer, because we will not be divided. I am proud of all of you for coming here despite your fears. And I am grateful to you, always for letting me call myself one of you."
―Paul Lantom[src]

As always, Lantom went inside Clinton Church as he began his mass ceremony before the church goers, taking a moment to thank them all for coming to church in spite of the recent events that had shaken the people of New York City. Lantom called these events deeply troubling for all the people of Hell's Kitchen, commenting how the institutions that they had trusted, such as the New York Bulletin, were attacked and innocent people were killed by mindless violence.

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Lantom gives his speech to his church goers

Lantom went on to note how they were now forced to question if the people who had been fighting for them, such as Daredevil were really monsters all along. Lantom then told the church goers how they were being told that they were weak since they were no longer safe within their own city due to these seemingly random attacks, and yet they had proved themselves to be stronger and safer by standing together and returning to church, before noting that he was proud of everyone for coming there despite their fears, while noting that he was grateful to all of them for simply allowing him to call himself one of them.

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Lantom sees Benjamin Poindexter's arrival

However, before Lantom could continue, Benjamin Poindexter then appeared wearing Daredevil's Suit and asked for Karen Page, much to the horror of everyone there. As Lantom had watched helplessly, Poindexter continued asking for Page, before using his Billy Club to strike a church goer across the skull with considerable force, before throwing the two ends of it and other church goers. Upon seeing the danger everyone was in, Lantom then desperately attempted to get all his followers to safety, only for them to realize that Poindexter had already locked the doors, leaving them trapped and defenseless.

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Lantom and Karen Page witnessed the fight

As Lantom got the innocent people to the back of the church, Page had then stepped out and surrendered herself to Poindexter, begging him not to hurt anyone. Seeing his target, Poindexter then picked up his Billy Club and greeted Page with a cruel, who had stood between him and all their church goers. However, before Poindexter could kill Page, Matt Murdock had then returned to the church as he furiously attacked Poindexter, leading to a brutal fight between the pair, while Lantom had continued to desperately attempt to get Page away from the danger while Murdock attempted to finally defeat Poindexter.

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Lantom gets impaled by Benjamin Poindexter

However, Poindexter managed to overpower Murdock and refocused on Page, as he then proceeded to throw his Billy Club directly at her. Unwilling to allow one of his followers to die, Lantom put himself into the path of the Billy Club, being impaled in his chest while Page had screamed in horror. Witnessing this, Murdock got back onto his feet and continued fighting against Poindexter, while Page held Lantom in her arms and desperately attempted to stop his bleeding. With only a moment left to live, Lantom then whispered to Murdock, asking to be forgiven, before succumbing to his wound, dying in Page's arms.[12]

Legacy

Remembered by Friends

"He spent many years trying to get me to face my own fears. To understand how they enslaved me, how they divided me from the people that I love. He counseled me to transcend my fears, to be brave enough to forgive... and see the possibilities of being a man without fear. That was his legacy. And now it's up to all of us to, uh, live up to it."
Matt Murdock to Karen Page[src]
This section requires expansion

To be added

Personality

"Whatever it is that you've done or haven't done, it can still be redeemed."
"Yeah, that's nice, but I'm not so sure that I believe that."
"“Everything will be okay in the end. If it's not okay, it's not the end.” John Lennon said that. Who are we to argue with a Beatle?"
―Paul Lantom and Karen Page[src]
This section requires expansion

To be added

Facilities

This section requires expansion

Relationships

Allies

Enemies

Appearances

Appearances for Paul Lantom

In chronological order:

Trivia

Behind the Scenes

  • Series writer Ruth Gage called Paul Lantom "almost Matt's therapist. He was used in a lot of different ways. We wanted him to be someone who would actually discuss the things Matt brought to him."
    • Writer Christos N. Gage added, "Father Lantom really was supposed to be a catalyst to force Matt to question his own view on things and his own feelings about what he was going to do."

References

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The Marvel Cinematic Universe wiki has a collection of images and media related to Paul Lantom.
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The Marvel Cinematic Universe wiki has a collection of quotes related to Paul Lantom.

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