VATICAN CITY – Pope Francis’ favored biographer, Austen Ivereigh, has stated the Pope personally confirmed the reports that he intends to strip Raymond Cardinal Burke of his flat and salary, though denied calling the cardinal his “enemy.”
In a report published November 29 on the heterodox site Where Peter Is, Ivereigh wrote that he had met with the Argentine pontiff on Monday, who confirmed the veracity of reports stating that Francis intended to strip Cardinal Burke of his Rome apartment and his salary.
In the course of our conversation, Francis told me he had decided to remove Cardinal Burke’s cardinal privileges — his apartment and salary — because he had been using those privileges against the Church. He told me that while the decision wasn’t a secret, he didn’t intend a public announcement but earlier that day (Monday) it had been leaked.
Ivereigh stated that this meeting took place on Monday afternoon. It was on Monday morning that the New Daily Compass (La Nuova Bussola Quotidiana) published their report, stating that Pope Francis had, during a November 20 meeting with heads of the Roman Curia, revealed his intention to evict the prominent American cardinal from his lodgings in Rome.
BREAKING: Austen Ivereigh writes #PopeFrancis personally confirmed Monday he’s decided to remove “Cardinal Burke’s cardinal privileges — his apartment & salary — because he had been using those privileges against the Church.”#PopeFrancis claimed he didn’t say the word “enemy.” pic.twitter.com/O3syGdrj86
— Michael Haynes (@MLJHaynes) November 29, 2023
“Cardinal Burke is my enemy, so I am taking away his flat and salary,” the Pope was reported as saying, according to NDC’s Vatican source. The NDC reported that this information had come to them via a “Vatican source” and that it was later corroborated by other sources.
I Chose Liberty: Autob... Best Price: $11.95 Buy New $15.95 (as of 06:44 UTC - Details) This was subsequently supported by a number of outlets, who corroborated this information via their own sources after the NDC broke the story. Reuters then reported late in the evening of November 28 that an official at the November 20 meeting said Francis described Burke as “working against the Church and against the papacy” and sowing “disunity.”
With Ivereigh’s testimony, it appears that the Pope himself has confirmed the reports about his comments, albeit Francis argued that he did not describe Burke as an “enemy.” According to Ivereigh, Pope Francis sent him a message on November 28 saying: “I never used the word ‘enemy’ nor the pronoun ‘my.’ I simply announced the fact at the meeting of the dicastery heads, without giving specific explanations.”
At the time of the initial report by the NDC, Burke had not received any official notice of the Pope’s intended actions, nor had he received any word by late last night.
The former prefect of the Apostolic Signatura, Burke has emerged as a key figure for many during the nearly 11 years of Pope Francis’ papacy. He has, particularly notably, signed both the initial dubia on Amoris Laetitia released in 2016, and then the 2023 dubia on issues pertaining to the Synod on Synodality.
Mainstream media and heterodox Catholic outlets have consistently vilified the American cardinal, due to his pronouncement of Catholic teaching which is often placed in juxtaposition with the statements of Pope Francis.