Birthday: 30 June 1948

Bachelor’s in Philosophy – The Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C.
Master’s in Philosophy – The Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C.
Bachelor’s in Sacred Theology – Pontifical Gregorian University, Rome, Italy
Master’s in Theology – Pontifical Gregorian University, Rome, Italy
Licentiate in Canon Law – Pontifical Gregorian University, Rome, Italy
Diploma in Latin Letters – Pontifical Gregorian University, Rome, Italy
Doctorate in Canon Law – Pontifical Gregorian University, Rome, Italy

Ordination: 29 June 1975
Episcopate: 6 January 1995
Cardinal: 20 November 2010

Cardinal Raymond Burke on the Issues

Viganò testimony

Supports investigating Archbishop Viganò’s claims
  • Cardinal Burke told LifeSiteNews “The declarations made by a prelate of the authority of Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò must be totally taken to heart by those responsible in the Church. Each declaration must be subject to investigation, according to the Church’s time-tried procedural law.” (LifeSiteNews)

Amoris Laetitia

Does not allow Communion for divorced and remarried Catholics
  • Cardinal Burke was one of four Cardinals in the Church to co-author the dubia, a set of questions submitted to Pope Francis intended to clarify what Amoris Laetitia actually teaches. He is one of the leading voices in the Church defending perrenial Catholic teaching denying communion for divorced and remarried Catholics. (LifeSiteNews)
  • During a 2017 interview with a Hungarian Catholic news service, Cardinal Burke reiterated the teaching of John Paul II on communion for the divorced and civilly remarried. Burke said Holy Communion could be given to divorced and remarried Catholics but only if they were abstaining from sexual relations. “Discernment does not decide what is right or wrong,” he added. (Katolikus Válasz)
  • Speaking with France2 television in February 2015, Cardinal Burke said he would be willing to “resist” Pope Francis if he were to attempt to change the Church’s practice of denying Communion to those in “second marriages.” (France2)

Pro-life leadership

Actively engages in pro-life leadership
  • In 2019, Cardinal Burke participated in and lead the 9th annual Rome March for Life. (LifeSiteNews)
  • At the 2018 Rome Life Forum, Cardinal Burke said that a religion that permits the killing of infants or would allow “any other kind of intrinsic evil” should, based on the doctrine of the Kingship of Christ, be suppressed from manifesting such “false” beliefs. (LifeSiteNews)
  • Cardinal Burke has been a regular attendee at the annual Rome March for Life and the Italian March for Life since their inceptions in the early 2010s. (National Catholic Register)
  • In 2017, Cardinal Burke was awarded the Law of Life Achievement Award for defending faith, life, and family by a group of pro-life leaders at the March for Life in Washington. (LifeSiteNews)
  • On April 17, 2017, Cardinal Burke said Mass and spoke at a gala in North Dakota announcing plans to establish an international pro-life, pro-family center in Fargo named after St. Gianna Molla. (LifeSiteNews)
  • Cardinal Burke gave a powerful speech on the need to evangelize and preach the Gospel of Life, echoing themes found in St. John Paul II’s Evangelium Vitae, at the first ever Rome Life Forum in 2014. The Rome Life Forum is an international pro-life conference held in Rome every year, and features priests, lay theologians, bishops and Cardinals faithful to Church teaching on life issues. (Zenit)
  • Cardinal Burke was heavily involved in the first ever March for Life in Rome in 2012. He held Eucharistic adoration at St. Mary Major Basilica the day before the march in reparation for abortion and took part in the march the following day. (National Catholic Register)


Upholds Church teaching on homosexuality
  • During an interview with The Wanderer newspaper in January 2019, Cardinal Burke said pro-LGBT priest Fr. James Martin is “not coherent with the Church’s teaching on homosexuality.” God “did not make us to engage in sexual relations between two people of the same sex,” he said. (LifeSiteNews)
  • During the 2018 sex abuse crisis, Cardinal Burke said “indeed there is a homosexual culture, not only among the clergy but even within the hierarchy, which needs to be purified at the root. It is of course a tendency that is disordered.” He also said that ” we have a very grave problem of a homosexual culture in the Church” that “needs to be addressed honestly and efficaciously.” Burke gave his remarks during an interview with Catholic Action for Faith and Family. (LifeSiteNews)
  • During a June 2018 interview with a Polish magazine, Cardinal Burke said “Moral teaching tells us that certain behaviors are evil, always and everywhere, and that they cannot be called good under any circumstance.” This applies to “sexual activity with a person of the same sex, and also to extramarital sexual relations.” (LifeSiteNews)
  • At a conference in Louisville in July 2017, Burke rebuked a liberal German Cardinal who said Germany’s decision to legalize homosexual “marriage” isn’t a major concern for Catholics in Germany. Burke said Church leaders must not back away from their duty of giving the world the Church’s “solid teaching” on marriage. (LifeSiteNews)
  • In July 2017, Cardinal Burke personally thanked and gave his blessing to a group of 400 Italians who conducted a rosary procession in Italy in reparation for a seaside village’s decision to host a homosexual “Pride” parade. (LifeSiteNews)
  • During a 2017 interview with a Chinese Catholic newspaper, Burke said homosexuality is “abnormal” and that the Church should not apologize to gays for teaching “the truth about sex and sexuality.” Burke also said homosexual acts are “absolutely unacceptable” and are “against the nature that God has created for us.” (LifeSiteNews)
  • In 2015, Cardinal Burke told a German newspaper “The homosexual tendency is a form of suffering that afflicts certain people…A marital bond is only possible between people of different sexes. From the point of view of the Church, there can not exist a marriage between homosexuals.” (LifeSiteNews)
  • Cardinal Burke told LifeSiteNews in a 2014 interview that priests should “try to stay close” to parish members “living in public sin in a homosexual relationship” so as to “try to help them to leave the sinful relationship and to begin to lead a chaste life.” People in such relationships “certainly cannot have any leadership role in the parish” he added. (LifeSiteNews)
  • During the 2014 Synod on the Family, Cardinal Burke told LifeSiteNews that homosexual relations are intrinsically disordered and persons who suffer from same-sex attraction must not act on their inclinations. Burke called on parents and families to draw their homosexual children away from gay relationships. (LifeSiteNews)

Abortion politics

Upholds Church teaching on abortion politics
  • Cardinal Burke has been a stalwart defender of Canon 915 for decades, traveling the world and giving speeches and interviews defending the Church’s teaching that pro-abortion politicians and those who persevere in grave sin should not be admitted to Holy Communion. (LifeSiteNews)
  • Cardinal Burke said Ireland’s legalizing of abortion was partly due to a lack of leadership from the Vatican on life issues. Burke said Rome’s decision to not support Irish pro-lifers was alarming because “fundamental truths of the faith” are being undermined across the Western world. Burke gave his remarks during an interview with a Polish weekly magazine in June 2018. (LifeSiteNews)
  • Cardinal Burke appeared in a 20 minute video produced by the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children in 2016. The video urged Irish Catholics and Irish lawmakers to defend Ireland’s 8th Amendment, which bans abortion. (Society for the Protection of Unborn Children)
  • Cardinal Burke told EWTN’s Raymond Arroyo in 2013 that Church teaching on denying communion to pro-abortion politicians is clear and makes perfect sense. “I can’t feel badly about it or question” it, so “I continue to say they should not be given Holy Communion,” he said. (LifeSiteNews)
  • In 2013, Cardinal Burke told a Minnesota-based newspaper that Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi should “certainly” be denied Holy Communion given her obstinate support for pro-abortion legislation. (LifeSiteNews)
  • During a 2009 interview with LifeSiteNews, Burke said bishops have “no choice” but to refuse Holy Communion to Catholic politicians who obstinately persevere in promoting pro-abortion laws. (LifeSiteNews)
  • In 2007, Burke strongly urged his fellow bishops to uphold Canon 915 in an article appearing in a Canon Law journal. “No matter how often a bishop or priest repeats the teaching of the Church regarding procured abortion, if he stands by and does nothing to discipline a Catholic who publicly supports legislation permitting the gravest of injustices and, at the same time, presents himself to receive Holy Communion, then his teaching rings hollow,” Burke wrote. (Periodica De Re Canonica)
  • Burke was quoted in a 2004 article for the St. Louis Post Dispatch saying that if pro-abortion senator John Kerry appeared in his Communion line, he would admonish him to not present himself for the Eucharist. (LifeSiteNews)


Faithful to Church teaching on contraception
  • During the 2018 sex abuse crisis, Cardinal Burke told a pro-family Catholics organization that the “homosexual culture” in the church has been “considerably aggravated by the anti-life culture in which we live, namely the contraceptive culture that separates the sexual act from the conjugal union.” He went on to note “The sexual act has no meaning whatsoever except between a man and a woman in marriage since the conjugal act is by its very nature for procreation.” (LifeSiteNews)

“LGBT” ideology

Not enough evidence collected on this issue
  • In a 2016 interview, Cardinal Burke condemned gender theory, calling it “madness” and “an artificial creation.” Burke affirmed the existence of only two genders and stated that allowing people to use whatever bathroom they choose is “inhuman” and will only lead to “confusion,” especially in schools. (LifeSiteNews)


Promotes reverent liturgy
  • Cardinal Burke joined Bishop Athanasius Schneider in rejecting the German Bishops’ proposal of allowing Holy Communion to non-Catholics. Burke told LifeSiteNews in June 2018 that non-Catholics receiving Holy Communion is a contradiction. “Receiving Holy Communion means that you accept all that the Catholic Church teaches,” he said. (LifeSiteNews)
  • Cardinal Burke celebrated in Latin an ad orientem mass at a Fraternal Society of St. Peter church in Rockdale, Illinois on October 20th, 2017. Bishop Paprocki and Bishop Siegel were in attendance. (FSSP)
  • In a 2017 interview with The Wanderer newspaper, Burke said that receiving Holy Communion kneeling and on the tongue would be “very effective” in restoring to the Liturgy a sense of proper worship. He also said having the priest facing liturgical East would be a good thing. (LifeSiteNews)
  • During an interview with The Wanderer newspaper in 2017, Cardinal Burke said the “most splendid” contribution Pope Benedict gave to the Church during his pontificate was “restoring the correct order and beauty to the Sacred Liturgy.” Burke praised Pope Benedict for having the “courage” to permit a much wider use of the Traditional Latin Mass. (LifeSiteNews)
  • In 2016, Cardinal Burke called for all Masses offered at the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in La Crosse, Wisconsin to be celebrated ad orientem. (Church Militant)
  • Days before Pope Francis traveled to Lund, Sweden in 2016 to commemorate Martin Luther’s revolt, Burke told LifeSiteNews it would be “sacrilege” and “among the gravest of sins” for a non-Catholic to receive Holy Communion. Burke said it is an “irreformable” dogma of the Church that only those who believe Jesus Christ is truly present in the consecrated bread and wine are able to receive the Eucharist. (LifeSiteNews)
  • In a January 2015 interview, Cardinal Burke said girl altar servers are partly to blame for the lack of priestly vocations. Burke said many parishes are feminized and run mostly by women, which causes men to no longer want to be involved. (The New Emangelization)

Marriage and Family Life

Upholds Church teaching on marriage and family life
  • Cardinal Burke has endorsed a Catholic scouting organization for young men and fathers called the Troops of St. George. In a letter written May 25, 2018, Burke said the Texas-based group fosters the relationship between sons and their fathers and promotes authentic masculinity at a time when there is a “growing amount of gender confusion in our world today.” (LifeSiteNews)
  • At a conference held at the Cathedral of Sts. Peter and Paul in Philadelphia in April 2018, Cardinal Burke told hundreds of Catholics that the fundamental truths about marriage are under a “diabolical” and “ferocious” attack. Homosexual activity, transgenderism, and the media contribute to the corruption of family life and of children, Burke said. Catholics need to promote “a new evangelization which begins in marriages and families, and through marriages reaches the entire culture.” (LifeSiteNews)
  • In January 2016, more than 15,000 Catholics signed up for a monthly Rosary crusade with Cardinal Burke to pray for, among other things, strong families, to stop the homosexual revolution, and to overturn legalized same-sex “marriage.” (LifeSiteNews)
  • In 2013, Cardinal Burke told a Minnesota-based newspaper that the rapid advancement of the “homosexual agenda” comes from the devil and that it ought to frighten Catholics about the future of the United States. Burke said the homosexual agenda is aimed at destroying individuals and families and is anti-life. (LifeSiteNews)


Upholds Church teaching on education
  • In 2015, Cardinal Burke condemned the “Alpha Program,” a catechetical tool for evangelization used in over 70 countries. Burke said the program does not have the “doctrinal and methodological foundations” required to teach the Catholic faith. Burke urged Catholics to use the Catechism, the teachings of Servant of God Fr. John A. Hardon, S.J. and the works of St. John Paul II instead. (Church Militant)
  • Cardinal Burke said Notre Dame’s decision to honor Joe Biden in 2009 was a great scandal and “one of the greatest evils of our time” in that it represented the tendency of Catholics to separate their faith from their daily living. (LifeSiteNews)
  • In 2006, Cardinal Burke praised a grassroots Catholics organization for publishing a book that rebuked the highly popular movie The Da Vinci Code. Cardinal Burke thanked the group for their book. “In a society marked by confusion and error about the most fundamental truths, Rejecting The Da Vinci Code is a light in the darkness. This timely volume helps those who may be deceived by the falsehoods in Dan Brown’s book to adhere to the truth.” (Tradition, Family and Property)
  • Cardinal Burke has been the long-time international director of the Marian Catechist Apostolate, an education-based organization aiming to help Catholics grow in understanding the faith. The organization was founded by Fr. John A. Hardon, S.J. in the decades following Vatican II. Burke brought the group to the Archdiocese of St. Louis in 2004. (St. Louis Review)