Action Alert!
Catholic World News

Demotion coming for Cardinal Burke?

September 17, 2014

Cardinal Raymond Burke will soon be removed from his post as the prefect of the Apostolic Signatura and appointed patron of the Knights of Malta, according to Vatican jounalist Sandro Magister of L’Espresso.

If the Magister story is correct, the appointment would represent a significant demotion for the American prelate. Cardinal Burke currently presides over the Church’s highest canonical court. As patron of the Knights of Malta he would hold a role ordinarily filled by a retired cardinal, or by a prelate who simultaneously holds another more prominent position. At the relatively young age of 64, Cardinal Burke would ordinarily have been expected to take another prominent post in the Roman Curia, or as head of a major archdiocese, upon leaving the Apostolic Signatura.

The report in L’Espresso suggests that the replacement of Cardinal Burke would confirm the intent of Pope Francis to remove conservative prelates from the leadership of the Roman Curia and replace them with clerics who would be more attuned to his own pastoral priorities. Cardinal Burke has been among the most outspoken Roman defenders of traditional Catholic teaching and liturgical practice.

Cardinal Burke was appointed to the Apostolic Signatura in 2008 by Pope Benedict XVI, who also elevated him to the College of Cardinals in 2010. During his years of service on the Vatican tribunal, he has also kept a busy schedule of public speaking appearances and interviews. Ironically, the light duties of the patron of the Knights of Malta could leave the American cardinal with even more time available for public speaking and writing.

If Cardinal Burke leaves his current post, there will be no American cardinal heading any dicastery in the Roman Curia.

 


For all current news, visit our News home page.


 
Further information:
Sound Off! CatholicCulture.org supporters weigh in.

All comments are moderated. To lighten our editing burden, only current donors are allowed to Sound Off. If you are a donor, log in to see the comment form; otherwise please support our work, and Sound Off!

Show 5 Comments? (Hidden)Hide Comments
  • Posted by: williiam ronner - Sep. 18, 2014 10:09 PM ET USA

    Please, give Cardinal Dolan a job at the Vatican.

  • Posted by: - Sep. 18, 2014 12:25 PM ET USA

    Is distaste for the traditional roman rite to be joined by distaste for orthodoxy? I hope that neither of these apparent aversions is true. But if either one is true, the other likely follows.

  • Posted by: rpp - Sep. 18, 2014 8:56 AM ET USA

    I love and miss Pope Benedict XVI.

  • Posted by: Rose of Lima - Sep. 17, 2014 9:11 PM ET USA

    How disappointing if this is true! Cardinal Burke is a champion of all things Catholic. Through his administration of the Marian Cathechist Apostolate, he promotes the late Jesuit Fr. John Hardin's efforts for strong and authentic instruction in the traditional Catholic faith. He is a true champion of the faith and I hope Pope Francis changes his mind. If not, send him back to the St. Louis Archdiocese ! We would welcome him with open arms!

  • Posted by: jg23753479 - Sep. 17, 2014 1:04 PM ET USA

    "...[T]he replacement of Cardinal Burke would confirm the intent of Pope Francis to remove conservative prelates from the ... Curia and replace them with clerics ... more attuned to his own pastoral priorities. Cardinal Burke has been among the most outspoken Roman defenders of traditional Catholic teaching and liturgical practice." As Matthew tells us, "By their fruits you will know them." Can we learn something about Francis' "pastoral priorities" from this demotion? I fear we can indeed.