Update: Cardinal Burke correlates 'moral corruption' with Vatican II interpretation

UpdateFollowing the posting of the original version of this blog the news agency ZENIT updated the transcript of Cardinal Raymond Burke's interview, changing the relevant sentence concerning Catholics who focus on social justice ministry. 

Instead of referring to a perceived division between ornate liturgies and social justice ministry as a "Communist misconception," the revised text refers to that perceived division as a "common misconception."

ZENIT has made the change without adding any additional notes. Edward Pentin, ZENIT's interviewer of Burke, said in a Twitter exchange he had "simply misheard" the cardinal. The original version of the blog post follows.

Original story: The cardinal who heads the Vatican's Supreme Court has apparently called Catholics who focus on social justice ministry instead of ornate liturgies akin to communists.

Cardinal Raymond Burke, a former archbishop of St. Louis known for a preference for Latin Mass and long robes during liturgies, makes the comments in an interview posted Thursday by the Catholic news agency ZENIT.

New to NCR! Visit our Obituaries pages to remember and celebrate the lives of those we have lost.

"Some argue the liturgy is mostly about aesthetics, and not as important as, say, good works done in faith," the interviewer asks Burke. "What is your view of this argument that one often hears?"

"It’s a Communist misconception," Burke responds. "First of all, the liturgy is about Christ. It’s Christ alive in his Church, the glorious Christ coming into our midst and acting on our behalf through sacramental signs to give us the gift of eternal life to save us."

"It is the source of any truly charitable works we do, any good works we do," he continues. "So the person whose heart is filled with charity wants to do good works will, like Mother Teresa, give his first intention to the worship of God so that when he goes to offer charity to a poor person or someone in need, it would be at the level of God Himself, and not some human level."

Burke currently serves as prefect of Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura and is a member of the Vatican's Congregation for Bishops, responsible for helping recommend what men should be appointed Catholic bishops around the world.


Join the Conversation

Send your thoughts and reactions to Letters to the Editor. Learn more here

Advertisement