Archbishop Burke Named to Congregation of Bishops

Archbishop Raymond L. Burke, former archbishop of St. Louis and currently prefect of the Apostolic Signatura (the Vatican's highest court) has been named to the Congregation of Bishops, where he will have a great deal of say in who is chosen to become a bishop in the United States (along with Cardinal Bernard Law).  Commentary on the appointment by Rocco Palmo and David Gibson.   Palmo opines on Burke's potential influence in the Congregation.  Gibson wonders if this, and other moves, show that the pope is "exorcising liberal demons" from the church.

Burke has been in the news of late speaking on a variety of topics--particularly in pro-life arena.  After Senator Edward M. Kennedy's funeral, presided over by Cardinal Sean O'Malley and celebrated by J. Donald Monan, S.J., Burke noted that "One sees the hand of the Father of Lies at work in the disregard for the situation of scandal or in the ridicule and even censure of those who experience scandal."  (It was, rightly or wrongly, taken as a strong rebuke of Cardinal O'Malley.) His 2004 article in America tackled the question of whether a Catholic politician who supports abortion rights can receive Communion.   Today, CNS reported that in honor of the close of a conference on the motu proprio Summorum Pontificum, which expanded permission of the use of the 1962 Roman Missal (commonly called the Tridentine Rite), Burke celebrated the Mass at St. Peter's using the rite.  CNS reports: Cardinal Angelo Comastri, archpriest of St. Peter's Basilica, said in a statement Oct. 19, "The Mass represented an extraordinary event, an event authorized on the occasion of the conference."  The cardinal declined further comment, but another Vatican official said the Mass probably was the first pontifical high Mass using the 1962 rite to be celebrated in St. Peter's Basilica in almost 40 years.

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Shawn Daly
8 years 7 months ago
My point about Constantinople , should have been directed to Michael Binder, not Joe G.
Jim McCrea
8 years 7 months ago
Now isn't THIS so very speshul!  There isn't a lace tablecloth in Christendom that will be safely allowed to be used as made.  Lots of new old ecclesiastical frou-frou will be needed ASAP.
I'm sure a new minor order of Train Bearer will be instituted as soon as practicable.
Attaboy, Byzeshawn:  you must have passed cheerleading class with flying colors.
Joe Garcia
8 years 7 months ago
Father,
Not that anyone is keeping score, but mark me down one the "wrongly seen as a strong rebuke..." column.
AMDG,
James Lindsay
8 years 7 months ago
One wonders whether this is an attempt by Benedict XVI to make things so nasty that the faithful will demand a separate English rite church in union with Constantiniple (or it could be God working through Benedict for that end).
Beth Cioffoletti
8 years 7 months ago
I find this very discouraging. 
Maybe it is really the time when we stop relying on Church, as we have defined it, to show the way.
Shawn Daly
8 years 7 months ago
This is great news! Abp. Burke is one of our best. Not only is this good for Holy Mother Church, it has the added bonus of driving dissenters everywhere to tears.
Joe G.  - As someone who is actively involed in ecumenical relations with the Othodox Churches, you might be surprised to learn that on the so-called social issues about which readers of this publication are most concerned, the Orthodox are in complete agreement with the Catholic Church. If you dislike "big, bad" Benedict, then Bartholomew will really drive you crazy.
Beth -none of us define the Church. It is an ontological reality. The way of the Church is Our Lord Jesus Christ. God have mercy on any who knowingly stop relying on the Way.
Glory to Jesus Christ! Long Live Pope Benedict!
Beth Cioffoletti
8 years 7 months ago
The thing is, Byzshawn, I really do like Benedict - a lot more than I thought I would when he was elected.  His latest encyclical, "Caritates in veritate" was astounding. 
Archbishop Burke, though, I find to be divisive.  You're right, it is driving me to tears.  It feels like I have lost my Church, and it seems like the "victors" are glad to see me go.
Helena Loflin
8 years 7 months ago
Well, the GOP is certainly celebrating.  One of their own.  More division in a House already divided and so weakened by the "scandal" of shameful cover-ups.  Father of Lies indeed!
 
 
david power
8 years 7 months ago
Poor Fr Jim,little did he know that the way his article was written would lead to such venom from the lovers of Christ.I am discouraged etc etc,if I ever get as shrill as that I hope somebody calls me aside and tells me to get a grip.Why do the friendly people at America act so selectively with their building bridges attitude?.I would love to see Fr Martin have another go at this article and write it as a Brother Priest of Archbishop Burke,write it even as a fellow American of Archbishop Burke and even write at as a Jesuit   with a little "thinking with the Church" thrown in as a measure of nostalgia.I will eagerly check this site to see the corrected article.
 
Pax,David 
Marie Rehbein
8 years 7 months ago
David Power,
Given that Archbishop Burke's has been promoted yet again, it would seem that his style of communicating should be imitated.  Therefore, I see no reason why Fr. Jim should take up a different style.
James Lindsay
8 years 7 months ago
I like Benedict XVI too, esp. re Caritas in Veritate.  It is consistent with the Gospel, as I am sure Barthalomew is as well.  As far as abortion, my quarrels are not over the morality but the legal and political strategy.  Gay marriage will take care of itself - so I have no worries about its eventual adoption.
My comment relates to the prophesies of St. Malachy, which styles Benedict as the Glory of the Olive.  That can be taken solely to mean his name, but it might predict other things as well.  Many see it as a sign of unity between east and west.  We shall certainly see.
It will be interesting to see what influence Burke has.  I would not read too much into this.  He could have been in the right place at the right time and asked to be considered for an open spot.  It could also be that the Joseph Ratzinger of Vatican II might be putting conservatives in the position he found himself in under John Paul II, of taking actions he found personally distateful out of obedience.  Time will tell.  God often uses people as he intends, rather than as they intend.
Think Catholic
8 years 7 months ago
I think this should put to rest the idea that the Vatican disapproves of and is trying to reign in Archbishop Burke's US speeches defending the sanctity of human life and the letter of canon law.
david power
8 years 7 months ago
Marie,I am sure after wincing at what you perceive him to be and not wanting to be tit for anybodys tat Fr Jim will consider rewriting this article with a Christian translation.Who knows it might be the sight of Rush Limbaugh which prods him into it.  
Marie Rehbein
8 years 7 months ago
David,
I am sure Fr. Jim could rewrite this to reference some of Archbishop Burke's better qualities (which I am assuming he has in contrast to his public persona), but pointing out the negative is what gets the Archbishop what praise he gets.  The article, however, is not Limbaugh-esque in any way.  The facts that Fr. Jim has presented are not distortions.
david power
8 years 7 months ago
Marie,my reference to Limbaugh was about a style that splits the world in two.When he speaks he knows who he is speaking to and he knows what brings out their demon,s their self righteousness and their tendency to demonize the other.Looking at the comments on here one would be hardpressed to say Fr Jim did not know what sharks he was feeding.Your first comment agreed with the same and said "What of it?". Your comments on Archbishop Burke are part of the same manichaen vision and if you read what Archbishop Burke says and writes you will see a genuine pastoral interest in everything.You will see a passion for Christ and the beauty and neccessity of His teaching.I think it is not the style of the Archbishop you find distasteful but rather the substance.He treasures the Catholic Faith and believes in its truth.That is his crime and the judges are as severe today as they were two thousand years ago.Fr Jim Martin is capable of writing very intelligently on our Faith and helping people come to a more complete understanding of it.He is a good man to have in this magazine and the American catholic Church is blessed to have him.but "in what I have done and what I have failed to do"applies to him also.
Pax      
Marie Rehbein
8 years 7 months ago
David,
     I don't think it is the substance of Archbishop Burke's teaching, but the condemnatory tone of it that repels me.  Any time a Church leader calls for excommunication of someone, people to pass judgment upon one another, or people to withhold communion from one another, he is not doing God's work. 
 
     In my case, this kind of behavior, which is not exclusive to Archbishop Burke, is what made me decide that being Catholic was not for me.  But it is not just this.  There is a lot of behavior in the Catholic Church that reminds me of siblings bickering.  It is immature.  It is self-centered.  It shows a lack of consideration for its effects on others, and seems primarily to be emotional venting that I suspect comes from always having to see life in terms of prohibitions and infractions.
 
     From my perspective, Fr. Jim writing positively on the Catholic faith would do nothing to counteract the negative effects of the various bishops and archbishops who are so outspoken and whose outrageous comments gets so much attention from the media.  In fact, Fr. Jim, by making it clear that he is not blind to these shortcomings in the leadership of the Church, gives me hope on behalf of those members of my family who are Catholic.
MATTHEW NANNERY
8 years 7 months ago
Cardinal Sean O'Malley gave John Kerry communion at his own installation Mass as archbishop of Boston. This was immediately prior to the time Archbishop Burke was actively advocation the withholding of communion. Just a little historical perspective.

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