Home | About Us | Subscriptions | Advertising | El Centinela
Catholic Sentinel | Portland, OR Wednesday, February 10, 2016
CYO Football 2015 2015 Priest Reassignments, Archdiocese of Portland Cardinal Francis George dies Mothering with faith Sisters of the Holy Names, 2015 Live Nativity at St. John the Baptist 2014 Fall CYO results Catholic Charities Donor Lunch 2014 Year of Consecrated Life opening Mass Holy Spirit Sisters Jubilee 2014 Seaside youth conference Mount Angel 125th Northwest Hub Furlow at papal Mass 2014 Rosary Bowl NW Brother André 2014 Fall 40 Days for Life 2014 Inauguration of Fr. Mark Poorman Coffee shop at abbey First day of school, 2014 Regis High School 50th anniversary 2014 Crooked Finger Pilgrimage Mass with migrant farm workers Maronite Ordination Consecration to "Immaculate Heart of Our Lady of Fatima" CYO track Southern Oregon Evangelization 2014 Priest Ordination Christ the King youth 2014 priest reassignments Our Lady of Lavang Confirmation, 2014 Memorial Day 2014 2014 Transitional deacon ordination Padre Foster Granados visits Albany Bishop Smith ordination Canonization of Pope John Paul II, Pope John XXIII Bishop Peter Smith 2014 Easter Vigil 2014 Walk of Cross 2014 Chrism Mass CYO basketball 2014 St. Patrick of the Forest 150th Catholic Charities Celebration of Hope, 2014 Boys2Men Archbishop visits Oregon State Penitentiary 40 Day Vigil for Life, 2014 Pope Francis creates new cardinals St. Henry shelter 2014 CYO swimming Funeral of Fr. George Wolf Travel on a budget Lunar New Year, 2014 Tech in Catholic schools 2014 Right to Life Rally Archbishop visits Santiam Prison First Mass in Oregon Milwaukie Posada St. Francis, Sherwood, Toy Drive Central Catholic football Typhoon Haiyan Deacon Ordination/ Kresbach, Schmitt A Catholic fisherman St. Cecilia Centennial Southern Oregon Welcome Mass Shepherd of the Valley, Central Point, dedication Grotto Anniversary 2013 Champions of Faith Dinner Gardenripe farms Coleman hop farm Corvallis Year of Faith Archbishop Howard at St. Rose Hitchhiking priests Franciscan Spiritual Center Sacred Heart, Medford Migrant Mass Tanzanians' jubilee World Youth Day 2013 2013 Blessing of the Animals 2013 Freedom Mass Albany school closure Fabric art Megan graduates from Catholic school St. Vincent de Paul Hillsboro 2013 Deacon ordination Sister Theresa Lamkin St. Helen Mission, Brownsville Marist Brainiacs St. Mary, Eugene St. Francis eighth graders Ascension confirmation 2013 Pastoral Ministry Conference St. Joseph Salem — Year of Faith Archbishop Sample's Installation Mass 2013 Archbishop Sample Chrism Mass 2013 2013 Young Catholics Pope Francis inauguration Celebration of Hope Vlazny Farewell Mass Archbishop Vlazny Farewell St. Paul Church in St. Paul Valley Catholic Green Building Rite of Election 2013 Water summit 2013 Lunar New Year Alveda King in Eugene New Monsignors, 2013 2013 Right to Life Rally MLK Mass, 2013 St. Henry, Gresham, Centennial Jesuit High drama School uniforms Friar in the mall Holy Trinity food ministry January Book Covers St. Andre Bessette food Year of Faith Mass Nestucca Sanctuary Hillsboro Choirs Father Betschart installation Salem Religious Freedom Rally Year of Faith Vespers, Awards Roy's Catholic School Adelante Mujeres 10th anniversary New Blanchet House Missionaries of Holy Spirit Priest, religious photos Providence Nursing Schools Pioneros Fortnight for Freedom Mark Bentz Deacon Ordination OLL School Walk Through Gaga over science St. Philip Neri Centennial Ordination of Bishop Cary SVDP, Grants Pass Holy Cross School centennial Confirmation - Mount Angel Holy Land Pilgrimage Blanchet Watershed Chrism Mass, 2012 Bishop-designate Cary Pope in Cuba, 2012 SSMO 125th Jubilee Mass Pope Benedict in Mexico 2012 Catholic Charities Celebration 2012 Madeleine Mardi Gras Centennial Rally for Life, 2012 Martin Luther King Jr. Mass 2012 Day Laborers-Guadalupe Guadalupe 2011 Christ the King, Milwaukie, 50th Sesame Doughnuts Central Catholic Volleyball St. Peter Centennial Deacon Ordination, October 2011 St. Agatha Centennial Rosary Bowl 2011 St. Wenceslaus, Scappoose, Centennial Filipino celebration Polish Festival 2011 Holy War Football 2011 World Youth Day 2011 Sun Gold Farm Our Lady of Victory's New Church Freedom Mass 2011 St. Mary Church Steeple Removal Priest reassignments, 2011 Old Catholic Buildings Paige Rice, St. Mary's runner Graduation 2011 Easter vigils 2011 Pastoral Ministry Conference Basketball Holy War 2011 Search for Peace 2011

SJB Ravioli Dinner 2016

Home : News : Pope Francis/Vatican
Burke says Apostolic Signature safeguards process of church justice
Catholic News Service photo
U.S. Cardinal Raymond L. Burke, prefect of the Supreme Court of the Apostolic Signature, the Vatican's highest court, arrives for a session of the general congregation meeting at the Vatican in this March 7 file photo. Cardinal Burke spoke Sept. 16 about Pope Francis' recent comments on pastoral care of divorced and remarried Catholics.
Catholic News Service photo
U.S. Cardinal Raymond L. Burke, prefect of the Supreme Court of the Apostolic Signature, the Vatican's highest court, arrives for a session of the general congregation meeting at the Vatican in this March 7 file photo. Cardinal Burke spoke Sept. 16 about Pope Francis' recent comments on pastoral care of divorced and remarried Catholics.
Catholic News Service

WASHINGTON — The service of the Apostolic Signature, the Catholic Church's highest appeals court, "is intimately connected with the very apostolic character of the church," U.S. Cardinal Raymond Burke told a Washington audience.

The prefect of the Supreme Court of the Apostolic Signature delivered the 11th annual James H. Provost Memorial Lecture at The Catholic University of America.

A former archbishop of St. Louis, he was appointed to the post by Pope Benedict XVI in 2008. He was named a cardinal in 2010.

The Apostolic Signature, in addition to hearing appeals of lower court decisions and administrative decisions by Vatican congregations, oversees the functioning of church tribunals and procedures.

Cardinal Burke encouraged his listeners to study "the church's discipline as it provides an irreplaceable service to every aspect of the church's life."

In his lecture, he addressed the relationship between the Apostolic Signature's Supreme Court and the local church and its "various areas of competence" in relation to the local church. He also reflected on the process of annulments, which he noted will be one of the areas discussed at this October's extraordinary Synod of Bishops.

Pope Francis has said church law regarding marriage, divorce and separation is a topic that exemplifies a general need for mercy in the church today and will be a subject of discussion at the synod, which will examine the "pastoral challenges of the family in the context of evangelization."

Regarding the "particular service" of the Apostolic Signature in the Roman Curia, "it exercises vicariously the judicial power of the Roman pontiff on behalf of the universal church," Cardinal Burke said. "Such power is correctly seen as ministerial, that is, as service of the particular churches in the communion of the universal church."

This service "is ordered to the 'unity of discipline,' which requires not only a Supreme Tribunal to decide cases of legitimacy, but also a department of justice to safeguard and promote the correct administration of justice in the universal church as well as the particular churches," he said.

A large part of the Apostolic Signature's daily work, Cardinal Burke said, "is the treatment of recourses against individual administrative acts."

These matters are diverse, he said, including, for example, recourses against dismissal of a religious, transfer of a parish priest, restriction of priestly ministry, removal of ministerial faculties, renovation of a parish church and dismissal from a teaching position.

The faithful who seek recourse can be assured their case "has been heard by the highest judicial authority in the church, exercising vicariously the power of judgment of the Roman pontiff, even if the final decision is not what they had desired," Cardinal Burke said.

Bishops, religious superiors and other church authorities, he continued, also have recourse to the Supreme Court of the Apostolic Signature "against administrative decisions of dicasteries of the Roman Curia, especially when such a decision has called into question their own exercise of their proper office."

"The judicial process and the final decision bring resolution and eventually, one hopes, peace to individuals and institutions of the church involved in difficult and often prolonged conflicts," the cardinal added.

One of the roles of the Apostolic Signature is to help diocesan bishops identify and train "ministers of justice," including the marriage tribunal official known as the "defender of the bond."

The advocates of those seeking annulment must present evidence that the marriage was null from the beginning; the defender of the bond, on the other hand, seeks to prove that an indissoluble marriage bond exists.

The Apostolic Signature solicits annual reports on the status and activity of more than 1,000 individual diocesan and interdiocesan tribunals throughout the world, Cardinal Burke noted.

The reports show whether the tribunal in question "has sufficient and properly qualified staff to handle the number of causes of nullity of marriage submitted to it for judgment," Cardinal Burke explained.

The Apostolic Signature also is "able to see the grounds of nullity on which the causes are judged, and to make appropriate inquiries about the jurisprudence followed at the tribunal," he added.

"The goal is that each particular church ... have a tribunal in place which is accessible to the faithful and which receives their petitions promptly and judges them according to the sound teaching and procedure set forth in the church's discipline," he said.

He added that if there is to be "any simplification of the process of nullity of marriage," it must be studied in light of the Apostolic Signature's service to the individual churches.

The full text of Cardinal Burke's lecture will appear in an upcoming issue of The Jurist, a journal published by The Catholic University of America Press. According to the university, it is the only scholarly peer-reviewed journal on canon law published in the United States. Its editorial office is housed within Catholic University's School of Canon Law.

Article Comment Submissions
Submit your comments, please. 
Comments are reviewed before being posted to the site. Comments must use respectful language and address the story. Comments are not posted immediately to the site. The site editor may edit content for appropriateness. There may be a delay of 24-48 hours. Comments may also be considered to appear as letters in our print edition, unless the writer specifices no.
Note: All information on this form is required. Your telephone number is for our use only, and will not be attached to your comment.
Submit an Article Comment
First Name:
Last Name:
Anti-SPAM Passcode Click here to see a new mix of characters.
This is an anti-SPAM device. It is not case sensitive.

Advanced Search

Mary Jo Tully ~ The Path to Resurrection

News | Viewpoints | Faith & Spirituality | Parish and School Life | Entertainment | Obituaries | Find Churches and Schools | About Us | Subscriptions | Advertising
E-Newsletter | RSS Feeds

© 2016 Catholic Sentinel, a service of Oregon Catholic Press

Software © 1998-2016 1up! Software, All Rights Reserved