Pope Francis on Saturday demoted a U.S.
cardinal opposed to gay rights.
Cardinal Raymond L. Burke, former
Archbishop of St. Louis, was removed as the head of the Supreme
Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura, the Vatican's highest court. He
will now serve as Patron of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta, a
Francis last year removed Burke from
the Vatican's Congregation for Bishops, which holds great influence in
appointing new bishops worldwide.
Last month, Burke led a successful
campaign to strike out language welcoming gays to the Catholic faith
in a draft document about the family.
Francis after bishops drop welcome to gays: God's not afraid of new
Burke recently called gay relationships
“evil” and harmful to children.
“If homosexual relations are
intrinsically disordered, which indeed they are – reason teaches us
that and also our faith – then, what would it mean to grandchildren
to have present at a family gathering a family member who is living
[in] a disordered relationship with another person?” Burke
“We wouldn't,” he answered. “If
it were another kind of relationship – something that was
profoundly disordered and harmful – we wouldn't expose our children
to that relationship, to the direct experience of it. And neither
should we do it in the context of a family member who not only
suffers from same-sex attraction, but who has chosen to live out that
attraction, to act upon it, committing acts which are always and
everywhere wrong, evil.”