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By Deacon Keith Fournier

3/22/2014 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (

Raymond Cardinal Burke is a courageous and holy Catholic Cardinal who is serving the Lord and His Church with dignity, fidelity and honor.

Surely, persons whose hearts are hardened against the truth will read something very different into the approach of Pope Francis, claiming that, in fact, he intends to abandon certain teachings of the Church which our totally secularized culture rejects. Their false praise of the Holy Father's approach mocks the fact that he is the Successor of Saint Peter, totally grounded in the Beatitudes, and that, therefore, with humble trust in God alone, he rejects the acceptance and praise of the world. - Cardinal Raymond Burke

Raymond Cardinal Burke -

Raymond Cardinal Burke -


By Deacon Keith Fournier

Catholic Online (

3/22/2014 (1 year ago)

Published in Europe

Keywords: Cardinal Raymond Burke, Pro-Life, Pro-Family, orthodoxy, orthopraxy, Catholic Action, Pro-Life, Deacon Keith Fournier

ROME (Catholic Online) - A European Catholic blog recently offered an excerpt from the monthly magazine Radici Cristiane, published out of Rome by Roberto de Mattei. It contained a wide ranging interview with Cardinal Raymond Leo Burke, the Prefect of the Apostolic Signatura.

As an admirer of the Cardinal, I wanted offer to our readers an excerpt from the interview. He is a man who is often wrongly accused of somehow "being on the outs" under the current Papacy. This is simply not accurate. 

One of the persistent, misinformed and undermining narratives which have filled the media - both secular and religious - since the beginning of the Pontificate of Francis- has the been one which pits Pope Francis, cast as the alleged "liberal reformer" against  Bishops such as Cardinal Raymond Burke, cast as the "conservative traditionalist."

It has differing versions. It is inaccurate, and it is doing a disservice to the Church and her mission. 

There are various agenda driven secularist versions of the narrative. They purport that, with the advent of the Franciscan papacy, the unchangeable teaching of the Catholic Church concerning the truth about the nature and ends of marriage or the absolute inviolable dignity of every human life, will somehow succumb to their notion of being progressive.

Their perceived notion of being progressive is, in reality, a regressive rejection of the true progress which the Christian vision brought to the world. It calls for a return to some practices which are Pre-Christian and pagan and will most certainly not bring progress. 

There are some "religious" versions of this narrative as well. Even some well intended enthusiastic supporters of Pope Francis feed this false narrative.

However, the narrative seems to have found its deepest roots among Catholics who self identify as more "traditionalist". Some of these dear Catholics, though certainly not most, seem to see themselves as more "enlightened" than many of the rest of us.

Some from among a small number within the traditionalist community even include the successor of Peter, Pope Francis, in their assessment of those who are somehow not embracing the fullness of Catholic faith. Though, few will ever come out and directly say so.

They insinuate that people like Raymond Cardinal Burke are being subtly persecuted from within the new Franciscan papal circles - and somehow cast aside. That narrative continues, even though the Cardinal continues to serve as the Prefect of the Sacred Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura and the President of the Advisory Board of the Dignitatis Humanae Institute.

The Cardinal himself  rejects the very notion! In a recent editorial in L'Osservatore Romano affirming the wonderful gift of Pope Francis, the cardinal seems to have been trying to put an end to the silliness. Here are a few helpful paragraphs:

Pope Francis has clearly reaffirmed the Church's moral teaching, in accord with her unbroken tradition. What, then, does he want us to understand about his pastoral approach in general? It seems to me that he first wishes to have people set aside every obstacle which they imagine to prevent them from responding with faith. He wants, above all, that they see Christ and receive His personal invitation to be one with Him in the Church.

The Holy Father, it seems to me, wishes to pare back every conceivable obstacle people may have invented to prevent themselves from responding to Jesus Christ's universal call to holiness. We all know individuals who say things like: "Oh, I stopped going to Church because of the Church's teaching on divorce", or "I could never be Catholic because of the Church's teaching on abortion or on homosexuality". The Holy Father is asking them to put aside these obstacles and to welcome Christ, without any excuse, into their lives. Once they come to understand the immeasurable love of Christ, alive for us in the Church, they will be able to resolve whatever has been troubling them about the Church, His Mystical Body, and her teaching.

Surely, persons whose hearts are hardened against the truth will read something very different into the approach of Pope Francis, claiming that, in fact, he intends to abandon certain teachings of the Church which our totally secularized culture rejects. Their false praise of the Holy Father's approach mocks the fact that he is the Successor of Saint Peter, totally grounded in the Beatitudes, and that, therefore, with humble trust in God alone, he rejects the acceptance and praise of the world.

It is not that the Holy Father is not clear in his opposition to abortion and euthanasia, or in his support of marriage as the indissoluble, faithful and procreative union of one man and one woman. Rather he concentrates his attention on inviting all to nurture an intimate relationship, indeed communion, with Christ, within which the non-negotiable truths, inscribed by God upon every human heart, become ever more evident and are generously embraced. The understanding and living of these truths are, so to speak, the outer manifestation of the inner communion with God the Father in Christ, His only-begotten Son, through the outpouring of the Holy Spirit.

There is room within the embrace of the Catholic Church for legitimate diversity within ortho-doxy (right doctrine) and ortho-praxy (right practice). In fact, there always has been. The preoccupation of some, though certainly not all, within certain segments of the traditionalist community within the Church with this incorrect narrative is not bearing good fruit and needs to end.

Raymond Cardinal Burke is a courageous and holy Catholic Cardinal who is serving the Lord and His Church with dignity, fidelity and honor. Yes, he can speak quite bluntly at times. There is a need for such bluntness. There is room within the Church for the wonderful diversity of personalities and styles which have existed among the Apostles from the very beginning.

Here is the excerpt from the interview from Radici Cristiane in a loose English translation.


Catholics Should Stand up Against Perversions of Relativism

An end to the silence, an end to the anxiety, an end to the  cowardice. It is necessary to bear witness to the truth of Christ to affirm the natural right to call the healthy Catholic doctrine into memory and stand up to the rampant perversions of relativism and secularism against the Church, against life and against the family, the cardinal said.

A certain laxity in the past decades have fostered the emergence and enforcement of false ideas. The fight against truth, beauty and goodness is in its present severity would have been unthinkable, if the half-heartedness had not come  into the Church, the cardinal said. "A real Catholic believes  entirely in every truth taught by the Church without compromise. The term  of , 'partial catholicity' and 'part catholic' is a contradiction in terms, " said Cardinal Burke.

"Confident No" to Abortion More Necessary Than Ever

Today it is  more than ever necessary  "to confidently say no to abortion and the contraceptive mentality".  In this sense,it was even more so a " resounding no to Communion for politicians, who act against the moral law,  in order, to prevent sacrilege through consistent action  and to protect the faithful from a public scandal."

The schools and the families should have no hesitation to "fight against the dictatorship of decadent gender theory. Parents need to watch over the education of their children so that they are educated regarding human sexuality to the truth and to be protected from false messages that are to be implemented by schools and the media," said Burke.  Parents should avoid having their children participate in classes and extracurricular activities that  undermine the truth about the nature of man as man and wife. "

Resist "Decadent Gender Theory"

The Cardinal treated the problem of genetic manipulation in the interview: "It is important to emphasize that the resistance of the Church against in-vitro techniques is based on the conception of the natural law and not to a specific Catholic doctrine. Right reason protects the inviolability of human dignity and the procreation of man. "

Against abortion and "gay marriage" the Cardinal  urged the raising of  "the loud voice of protest" and to take to the streets against those governments that violate the natural law. The March for Life in different countries is a very useful tool for it.

Obama Accelerated Spreading Perverse Theories

The Obama administration has, said Cardinal Burke, "brought an acceleration of  perverse theories". The policy of "U.S. presidents have become progressively more hostile to  Christian civilization. Many faithful Catholics have responded to the ever more increasing persecution. Unfortunately, there is still  the impression that a considerable part of the population is not really aware  of what is happening at present. "

In France, the population has responded most clearly: "The logo of Manif pour tous is very strong. It aims at the truth. What   the French have implemented  is a model for other countries. The citizens must be ready to act," said Cardinal Burke.

The complete eight-page interview can be read in the magazine Radici Cristiane, in Italian.


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