Cites LifeSiteNews Article Re. Steve Bannon’s Possible Film on “Homosexuality in the Vatican”
Cardinal Raymond Burke, president of the board of the Dignitatis Humanae Foundation (Institute for Human Dignity), has resigned his post, effective June 25, 2019.
In an official statement announcing his resignation, Burke cited an article published June 24 by LifeSiteNews which insinuated that he, through his association with the Institute’s founder, Christian conservative Benjamin Harnwell, was involved in a meeting between former Trump White House adviser Steve Bannon and Mr. Frédéric Martel, French author and LGBT activist who is author of the book In the Closet of the Vatican. In that meeting, there was reported to have been discussion of a possible movie exposing “homosexuality in the Vatican.” LifeSiteNews had made no attempt to contact Cardinal Burke to verify his possible involvement before publishing the article, which has now been removed from their site.
In his statement, Cardinal Burke emphatically disagreed with the premise of the controversial In the Closet of the Vatican. He wrote,
I do not, in any way, agree with Mr. Bannon’s assessment of the book in question. Furthermore, I am not at all of the mind that the book should be made into a film. I disagree completely with a number of Mr. Bannon’s statements regarding the doctrine and discipline of the Roman Catholic Church. Above all, I find objectionable his statement calling into question the Church’s discipline of perpetual continence for the clergy, in accord with the example and desire of Christ, Head and Shepherd of the Church.
Cardinal Burke added that while he has met with Mr. Bannon on occasion to discuss Catholic social teaching regarding certain political questions, he has never worked with Bannon in his organization. He explained:
I have been involved with the Dignitatis Humanae Institute for some years because of its work to support Christians in public life who act with respect for the moral law and, therefore, promote the common good.
His Eminence has been concerned that the DHI has become more and more closely involved with the political program of Mr. Bannon; and Cardinal Burke has urged the Institute to return to its original purpose, to “protect and promote human dignity based on the anthropological truth that man is born in the image and likeness of God.”
Cardinal Burke is not the first prelate to resign from participation on the Institute’s board. In January 2019, Cardinal Raffaele Martino submitted his resignation, retiring after eight years as honorary president.
And there is some confusion regarding the Institute’s location: For nearly eight years, it has been centered in Rome, but in January 2019 it was relocated to the 800-year-old Abbey of Trisulti in Collepardo, Italy, not far from Rome. However, in a statement on May 31, Italy’s Ministry of Culture said that it was revoking the concession on the mountaintop property, citing failure to pay concession fees and do maintenance work.