Rorate Caeli

(Updated: video) Full translation of Cardinal Burke's interview to
France 2: Resisterò (I will resist)

Source: 13h15 le dimanche, Sunday program of French public television network France 2, broadcast on Sunday, February 8, 2015 (title "N'oubliez pas de prier pour moi" - "Do not forget to pray for me"). 

Transcript begins at 8:17 and ends at 14:55. [Updated: see video below]

[Presenter:] Since then [the Christmas Address to the Curia dedicated to the "infirmities" of the Roman Curia], the Cardinals have receded into silence, but some remain with a heavy heart. One of the most influential of these has finally accepted to receive us. Cardinal Burke is an American, ultra-conservative, and close to former Pope Benedict XVI.

- [Interviewer:] We are very glad to meet you, that you could grant us a little bit of your time! You are a great admirer of Benedict XVI?

- [Burke, in French:] Oh, yes!

- [Interviewer:] You have his complete works?

- [Burke, in French:] Of all the qualities of Benedict XVI, I think that the greatest is the one of being a master of the faith. / [In Italian:] When there is confusion, protest, I always turn towards him, towards his writings on the liturgy, but also on other doctrinal matters. Now I must get used to a new pope and -

- [Interviewer:] Is it difficult? Sincerely.

[Presenter:] The Cardinal is not seen favorably [lit. "in odor of sanctity"] in the eyes of the new pope. He was in the room on the day Francis threw his darts against the Curia.

- [Burke, in Italian:] I have heard here and there some jokes among the cardinals: "how many infirmities do you have?" It will be remarked upon for some time.

[Presenter:] The opposition between both men goes back to the month of October, at the time of the Synod on the family. In the order of the day, some matters provoke turmoil among the bishops, such as communion to remarried divorcees or the recognition of homosexual couples.

[Recording of Francis in the Synod:] "A cardinal wrote to me saying, 'too bad that some cardinals have not had the courage to say certain things. This is not good. This is not synodality. Because it is necessary to say all those things that, in the Lord, it is felt that must be said."

[Presenter:] Several conservative cardinals take up a crusade in order to defend the traditional family - among them Müller, Brandmüller, and Caffarra. As for Cardinal Burke, he takes the helm of the rebels. The debates are very lively, heated.

-[Burke, in Italian:] I cannot accept that communion be given to a person who is living in an irregular union, because it is adultery. On the matter of persons of the same sex, this has nothing to do with matrimony. This is a suffering that some persons have, of being attracted - against nature, sexually - to persons of the same sex. Those people, we must help them to live chastely. But there is no relation to marriage and family, it is a separate issue.

[Presenter:] The response to the Supreme Pontiff is clear: it is a rejection of what Francis had said in July 2013.

[Recording of Francis in the Airplane interview of July 2013]: "If someone is gay, and he searches the Lord, and has good will, who am I to judge him?"

-[Interviewer:] How do you intend to place pope Francis on the good path?

-[Burke, in Italian] On this, also one must be very attentive regarding the power of the pope. The classic formulation is that, "the Pope has the plenitude, the fullness, of power." This is true. But it is not absolute power. His power is at the service of the doctrine of the faith. And thus the Pope does not have the power to change teaching, doctrine.

-[Interviewer:] In a somewhat provocative way, can we say that the true guardian of doctrine is you, and not pope Francis?

-[Burke, in Italian:] [Smiles, shakes his head] We must, let us leave aside the matter of the Pope. In our faith, it is the truth of doctrine that guides us.

-[Interviewer:] If Pope Francis insists on this path, what will you do?

-[Burke, in Italian:] I will resist. I cannot do anything else. There is no doubt that this is a difficult time, this is clear, this is clear.

-[Interviewer:] Is it painful?

-[Burke, in Italian:] Yes.

-[Interviewer:] Worrisome?

-[Burke, in Italian:] Yes.

-[Interviewer:] According to you, today, is the Catholic Church under threat as an institution?

-[Burke, in Italian:] The Lord assured us, as he assured Saint Peter in the Gospel, that the forces of evil will not prevail -- non praevalebunt, we say in Latin. That the forces of evil will not achieve, let us say, victory over the Church.

-[Interviewer, looking at a portrait of Francis in the Cardinal's study:] Well then, Francis is your friend?

-[Burke, in Italian:] [Laughter] I would not want to make of the pope an enemy, certainly!

[Update (Feb. 9): thanks to the reader who included our words above as subtitles in the video below:]

[Originally available in French at this page. Rorate translation from the French and, in the case of the Cardinal's words, from the Italian original.]