Cardinal Burke: Life Demands Greatest Respect And Care

Respect For the Dignity of Human Life Is the Foundation of Good Order In Our Individual Lives and Our Society

Cardinal Burke Speaks at “Being Faithful, Even Unto Death” Conference

Kansas City, Kan., Jul 25, 2011- (CNA/EWTN News) – At a Kansas City conference on end-of-life care, Cardinal Raymond Burke said that suffering does not cause a person to have less meaning in his life, nor does it give the government the right to decide if that person should live or die.

“No matter how much a life is diminished, no matter what suffering the person is undergoing, that life demands the greatest respect and care,” Cardinal Burke, prefect of the Apostolic Signatura, told CNA.

“It’s never right to snuff out a life because it’s in some way under heavy burden.”

Cardinal Burke spoke July 23 to a packed auditorium of over 350 people at the Archdiocese of Kansas City, Kan. on the “mystery” of human suffering and dying for his keynote address at the “Being Faithful, Even Unto Death” conference.

The meeting, organized by the St. Gianna Physician’s Guild, addressed medical issues surrounding those suffering and those at the end of their lives. The event was the first initiative of its kind for the group.

In his speech on Saturday, Cardinal Burke said that human suffering can only be understood in light of the “gift” and “dignity” of human life.

“Human life is a gift to be accorded the highest respect and care from its beginning until natural death,” he emphasized. “We are not the creators of human life and must respect the plan of the author of life for us and for our world.”

The cardinal stressed the importance of Catholics giving end-of-life care more attention, in light of cases involving vulnerable people such as Teri Schindler Schiavo – a severely disabled Florida woman who was deprived of nutrition and hydration by court order and her husband’s request in 2005.

He underscored that nutrition and hydration are part of “basic human care” and to deprive patients of such care is not in any way “compassionate.”

Rather, “deliberately taking the life of an innocent human person is intrinsically evil and therefore, is never justified,” he said.

Along with the need for Catholics in general to be more informed on Church teaching about euthanasia, Cardinal Burke put special emphasis on Catholic students and seminarians being well versed on the topic.

All students, he said, should “pursue a certain number of courses of philosophy, so that in whatever field they specialize in,” they will use a logical, faith-filled approach to life issues.

Ultimately, he noted, “respect for the dignity of human life is the foundation of good order in our individual lives and our society.”

Without this respect, “our personal lives become profoundly disordered and society soon becomes a theater of violence and death.”

Cardinal Burke told CNA in comments following his talk that a Christian worldview isn’t necessary for people to agree that society does not have the right to determine who lives or dies.

He said that “right reason” alone is enough for people from different perspectives to enter into productive dialogue on the issue.

Also speaking at the event on Saturday was Dr. Gianna Emanuela Molla who discussed the spirituality, life and legacy of her mother, Saint Gianna Beretta Molla.

Dr. Molla’s mother was declared a saint in 2004 by the Catholic Church and is known for her heroism in choosing a risky operation to save her daughter Gianna’s life when she was two months pregnant. The conference marks the first visit to the U.S. for St. Gianna’s daughter.

Other speakers included geriatric specialist Dr. Austin Welsh, Thomas More Society executive director Peter Breen, and Bobby Schindler and Suzanne Vitadamo – both siblings of Teri Schiavo.

Archbishop Joseph Naumann of Kansas City and Bishop Robert Finn of Kansas City-St. Joseph also attended the event.

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7 comments to Cardinal Burke: Life Demands Greatest Respect And Care

  • Eugene Kelly

    On April 29th, 2009 I started saying the St. Bridget prayers. There are 21 promises associated with these prayers. I also said the rosary daily and am consecrated to the Blessed Virgin Mary.
    On April 27th, 2010 I heard the Holy Spirit say to me in the morning: “Preach the Gospel.”
    )n April 28th, 2010 I heard the Holy Spirit say to me in the morning: “Peace and joy.”
    On April 29th, 2010 I heard the Holy Spirit say to me in the morning: “These are the end times.”
    On August 19, 2010 I was told by a priest that my patron saint was St. Catherine of Siena. This was 3 days after I had my third deliverance event; it occured on August 16, 2010 but started on August 15,, 2010.
    Within the last month I realized that St. Catherine of Siena’s date of death was April 29, 1380.
    Yesterday it was revealed to me that if you add 2300 days to April 29, 2010 you get August 15, 2017, the Feast of the the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
    In the Book of Daniel 8:14 it says “And he said unto me, “For two thousand three hundred days ; then the sanctuary be cleansed.” 2300 days is about the length of time of the tribulation referenced in the Book of Revelation which is 7 years or about 2555 days.
    I will give you a new name.
    As Catholic and as Christians we should say the rosary daily and consecrate ourselves to the Blessed Virgin Mary and wear the brown scapular as the Blessed Virgin Mary has taught us to do. These two devotions will protect us in these end days. We are to preach the gospel and have peace and joy in the knowledge given to us. The worst sin in these times is to be fearful; we must trust in our Lord Jesus, in the Blessed Virgin Mary’s protection and in our Heavenly Father who sends Jesus to us. The Blessed Virgin Mary’s soul magnifies the Lord. She is the mother of Jesus and our spiritual mother and the Church;s spiritual mother. Her spirit has rejoiced in God her Savior who saved her from sin and made her have an Immaculate Conception and she was assumed into Heaven upon her earthly death. “For He who is mighty has done great things to me and holy is His name.” She is the woman in the book of Genesis and the Book of Revelation. Jesus calls her “woman” to pay her respect for the role she plays in salvation history. Hail Mary! The rosary and the Divine Mercy chaplet are the 2 most important devotions after our personal consecration to the Blessed Virgin Mary and the wearing of the brown scapular.

  • Eugene Kelly

    I was prayed for not long ago and this person said the Holy Spirit gave Him a word of knowledge that said I had a performance orientation in relation to God and that God loves me no matter how many prayers I say. This does resonant within me when I thought about it today again after I read my last e-mail. Do not be a hypocrite and recommend to pthers what you cannot even do yourself. So, I admit I have been back to the Church only 2 1/2 years after a more than 30 year period in which I became a lost sheep from God’s flock. God gradually pulled me back to Him and all the glory goes to God and not any to me. God could have easily forgot about me but He did not and when He had pulled me close to the boat I finally reached out my hand and He grabbed it. But you see it was He who had guided me back to the boat. It was He who showed me how to start cleaning the effects of years of sin off of me. It was He who showed me that His power was much greater than the evil one’s power over me. And so please I do not want to burden other people with things I cannot even do. When we develop a devotion to God or the Blessed Virgin Mary we must do it out of love and not out a sense of duty. Sometimes people like me who have been hurt by the evil one so bad think that every one needs to do the things that they have been inspired to do. This is not true. We are all individuals and every one is treated as such by God and we all respond to God in the ways He prompts us to and by the grace He gives us in a measure that He decides not us. So, I must not decide for someone else their devotion to God or to the Blessed Virgin Mary but we must be inspired by the movement of God we feel within our own hearts. I feel very fortunate to have this web site to read from many priests who I respect and look to for guidance because it is I who was lost for so long, it is I who the evil one took advantage of for so long, it is I God had to go to extraordinary measures to bring me back to Him. I have asked quite a few people in the last couple years why God had let me see demons and the I got a good answer to this question in June I think. This person told me, “Well, maybe, you were just one tough nut to crack.” And I think this is very true. God had blessed me with so many gifts that I thought I could do it all by myself, that I didn’t need God, that I could use my human reasoning power to run my life. Why, look how well things were going. Wasn’t this proof of this? But I found out that when we start thinking that our human logic and reasoning power is above God’s wisdom and God’s Word then we have just committed the ultimate sin and which is the father of all other sins and that, of course, in the sin of pride. I continually commit this sin still today. Pride and arrogance. God is still teaching me every day. I must rely on His power, on His strength, and on His love because without them I fail utterly and in spectacular fashion. So, let each day seek God’s face. I should not cause scandal by requesting others do what I cannot even do myself. Jesus warned against this. Let us each know that God loves us so much and that we can never earn His love. He loves us because He created us and I believe if we acknowledge this fact then we have opened the door to His knock at our door and now His love will grow in us not because of us but in spite of us and because of Him. All glory goes to Him because I have seen what happens when I only rely on myself. No, our reliance has to be totally on Him because all good comes from Him. The good does come from me but only from the Holy Spirit that lives in me because of the great loving passion of Jesus Christ and the one who sent Him, God the Father. When we accept God our lives change because of God’s grace. We are saved by His grace, by His body and blood, by the Father’s forgiveness which we receive only because of what Jesus did for us. Our prayers still hold much value with God because Jesus tells us to pray in His living Word in the Gospel. Jesus taught us how to pray when He gave us the Lord’s prayer. The archangel Gabriel taught us how to pray when he said words of praise to Mary which came directly from God the Father. So, what I am saying is we should listen ourselves to God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Spirit and the Mother of God and then by the grace given us make use of our own free will to determine our own devotions to the Holy Trinity and to the Blessed Virgin Mary. But we must know God loves us as we are in our weakness, in our woundedness, in our brokenness, in our wretchedness, He still loves us. Wow! That is always amazing to me. Because I know I truly am not worthy. I know I am truly a great sinner. So, I must be very careful to always know that I am still here on this earth because of divine mercy, not because I am good or because of my own strength. Left on my own I know my own rudder will lead me to destruction and vice. I need to grab on to and not ever let go of the rudder placed in my hand by God and His Holy Spirit after he dragged me out of the stormy sea and to let that rudder lead me continually to Him for strength and nourishment. I have felt the love of God and the love of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Yes, God has done great things to the Blessed Virgin Mary and she intercedes for us and God has sent her to us over and over again to guide us and instruct us. Is this surprising. No, I think not. She has a unique position in relation to God. She is the daughter of God the Father, the mother of God the Son and the spouse of God the Holy Spirit. No other created being even comes close to this. And who can deny that God’s love has done great things to the Blessed Virgin Mary. She is above all other created things. She is queen of heaven and earth, queen of the universe, and reigns with her Jesus, her Son. God raised her up to a special place in creation, far below him but far above all of us. All praise to Mary is praise to God who made her. Can we all not sense the delight God finds in the Blessed Virgin Mary? Let us praise God, love God, bless God, thank God, adore God, worship God, serve God and be humble before God always for without God we are truly nothing and come only to bad things! God’s kindness and love know no bounds! All glory to God!

  • Eugene Kelly

    It is good to pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet and a decade of the Rosasry daily at a minimum but best to pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet and all 4 decades of the Rosary daily. These prayers are requested by Jesus and the Blessed Virgin Mary because they help heaven fight hell and we are the beneficiaries so we say these prayers out of love for God and out of love for each other, i.e. for out of love for the whole Kingdom og God.

  • Hello Esther!

    Wow! It is so refreshing to see such passion for the One True Church of Christ! Like John said, you are blessed to have such a gift. May I ask you, have you ever been to a Traditional Latin Mass? Have you ever listened to the sermons on Audio Sancto I’m sure you will find what you are looking for there.

    I would also like to take what you have said about leaving the Roman Catholic Church, the only Church that has the four marks of True Church of Christ, and make an analogy. Let’s say, for example, that you had many children and were going through a very difficult, public hardship. Many people who knew you were accusing you of doing bad things and you were being slandered and persecuted in every way imaginable. How would you feel if your own children turned their backs on you because it was too hard on them to see you so persecuted? Don’t you think that you would need the most at that time?

    Have you ever stopped to think about how Our Lord would feel if you left His Church, His Bride, because She is being persecuted? Isn’t that like the Apostles who fled during the Passion? Don’t you think that to stand like Our Lady at the foot of the Cross is a sign of deeper strength and commitment to Our Lord? Yes, the Church is going through Her Passion now and now is the time to stand in solidarity with her, not run away. Our Lady heard every insult, every blow of the hammers and every word of Her dying Son, but She did not think of leaving his side. And She loved him more than you could ever hope to.

    Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary, Pray for us.
    In His Love

  • Esther Ventura Ferencz

    Hello John,

    You copy pasted my paragraph about my passion as to my maternal Russian/Ukraine Orthodox and moving to if I see fit? OF COURSE I mean it. I was so sickened and just in utter disbelief that such was allowed to happen……..I was dumbfounded and IT takes alot to make me mute. NO excuses for any of what happened. IT literally HURT not only in spirit but physically as well to observe those abominations. Wouldnt YOU agree?
    I love my Catholic Faith deeply and most passionately. To see this slap to MY GOD in this manner was embarrasing and hurtfull. NO my passion did not blind my seeing what I wrote.

    I cannot bear to see her so disabled as it were, by actions not taken or taken that so oppose the church, but more so our Precious Lord.

    As to the Orthodox Litgury? I simply am in awe, and have been all my life at its reverence. It is deep and
    ancient and I love it very much. There has been progress
    made for unity with the Orthodox and Papal Authority and I pray that this works out.

    YES I will visit again and post as I find this page, Courgeous Priest, very refreshing and instructive filled.

    I have been told to temper my passions at times, BUT I only show as when necessary.

    Peace To You John, and God Bless and Mary Keep You Safe.

  • Eugene Kelly

    Jesus came to us to support life in All its forms and in All its times in our lives.
    I believe, because the Holy Spirit has directly indicated this to me, that we are living in the “end times”.

    This country’s greatest sins are the 53 million children we have slaughtered through abortion. We need to speak out against the deception that is the Roe V. Wade Supreme Court decision, pray for the protection of unborn children, and the Catholic Church must take a firm and unequivocal stance against abortion, against the use of contraception, against same-sex marriage, against homosexuality, against women in the priesthood, against sexual promiscuity and pornography in all its forms. Sexual purity and a firm understanding of a chaste life are what God wants us to understand.

    Now is not the time for discord and disharmony in the Church. Now is the time to unite as one Body in Christ and pray that God will be merciful to our outrageously sinful nation and world. We can only pray that through our dedication to God’s will that we can be spared the judgement we deserve because the slaughter of our children and the silence from the pulpit is deafening. Can we not find in the Gospel a place to speak out against the slaughter of children, against same-sex marriage, against homosexuality, against contraception, against sexual promiscuity, against pornography? If we offend people then these people need to find another place where they can sin against God and be accepted for their sinful behavior. Jesus wants to save all people but He wants them to stop sinning and so they have to be taught what a sin is. Can this not occur also in a homily? Are their rules against speaking out against sinful behavior? We are to speak the truth in love and in a loving way. But complete silence is not love. Silence is tacit acceptance of sinful behavior and tacit agreement with it. If the Church does not speak out then who will? The media has everyone convinced that the way to happiness is to do whatever pleases you at the moment. The Church is in turmoil. Let this turmoil be a righteous and joyful turmoil then and not surrender to the corruption of society. Our peace will come in knowing we are united with God not in the justification by the media. Our president does not stand against abortion and contraception so we cannot look to the federal government for answers, we must elect leaders for are pro-life as Jesus and Mary and they proceed from God the Father.

    The Blessed Virgin Mary has appeared many times to warn us and taught that we should say the rosary daily and consecrate ourselves to her and wear the scapular as a reminder that we should be devoted to Jesus through her because Jesus so loved His mother Mary and she is our spiritual Mother and of the Church. We are not to take this lightly.

    In my fight against satan and evil I was seeing demons and this was immediately rectified by my consecration to Mary on the Dec. 8, 2009, the Feast of the Immaculate Conception. I saw no more demons and got more help in my fight in the days and months after this consecration.

    and I believe it is so in all our lives. Catholics and Protestants can say the rosary and consecrate to Mary. Jesus and God the Father will be immensely pleased. The Holy Spirit will dwell within us in peace. We should start to tune into the Holy Spirit and not into the latest game show or American Idol. Our idol should be God the Father through Jesus Christ in unity with the Holy Spirit and through the Immaculate Heart of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

    Say each day as you rise, I love you Father, I love you Jesus, I love you Holy Spirit, I love you Blessed Virgin Mary, I love you St. Joseph, I love you saints, I love you holy angels, I love holy souls in Purgatory. God is love. God responds to our love for Him and for each other. They will know we are Christians by our love!

  • Esther Ventura Ferencz

    Thank you very much your Emminence, this article is needed now more then at any other time in recent history.
    The creeping merchant of killing in the name of mercy is beyond repugnant. The sheer evil of abandoning a sick
    soul to a slow and agonizing death via starvation as Terry Shindler, WHO by the way WAS NOT SICK, severely disabled indeed; or a quicker death by lethal injections is an act of satan. I have worked in nursing and have seen my share of ICU pts and within my own family suffering of great magnitude, even w/medical assit some suffering was not all contained. I have held people as they left this earth, some most dearly loved family they passed into new life at GODS CALL, not mans. To live in a society that tolerates the treatment that is awaiting us IF Obamacare goes into effect will be a hell on earth.

    I thank YOU again for bringing the truth into the light. SADLY we live in a society that does NOT hold the human person up and untill natural death to a high esteem, worthy of proper and loving care. Even the most seemingly benevolent people in this country see the WISENESS of no suffering and a quick out.

    Just as an aside I wish to state that I long as in the days of my youth for priests, bishops, cardinals and all clergy to SPEAK LOUD WITH STRONG AND UNAFRAID BOLDNESS. In todays church I see Catholic Clergy lax in this area to a degree that we have our Baptist Christian Clergy speaking LOUDER and more FIERCE in the direction of calling evil good and good evil. WHERE have these clegy gone? To the land of Obama Liberalism?

    I swear IF I SEE ONE MORE ABOMINATION such as what was allowed at Notre Dame and Georgetown COVERING OUR LORDS NAME SO a mere man could speak….I WILL GO TO my maternal grandparents faith at origin, Russian Orthodox. I WILL not sit thru ‘silly putty’ homilies any longer put on by effeminate priests…………..I simply REFUSE! I call IT being heritic to act as some of these said priests and bishops do.

    I am NOT by any means an old fogey, I am a 65 yr old woman who has seen, lived and observed the nearing collapse of a once mighty FAITH. Jesus’ Bride, Holy Mother Church, and woe to those who bring this forth as God has warned about what shall happen to the shepherd that leads his sheep astray.

    Again, Thank YOU and may God Bless and Mary Keep YOU!


    Hello Esther!

    Thanks so much for commenting. God has truly granted you a great passion. I was wondering if you really meant the following statement? Or was that wonderful passion of yours blinding you from seeing such a statement?

    I swear IF I SEE ONE MORE ABOMINATION such as what was allowed at Notre Dame and Georgetown COVERING OUR LORDS NAME SO a mere man could speak….I WILL GO TO my maternal grandparents faith at origin, Russian Orthodox. I WILL not sit thru ‘silly putty’ homilies any longer put on by effeminate priests…………..I simply REFUSE! I call IT being heritic to act as some of these said priests and bishops do.

    Peace to you and I look forward to more comments.
    John Quinn

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