“On the contrary, they love the Roman Pontiff, their Bishops and priests, and, when others have made the choice of schism, they have wanted always to remain in full communion with the Church, faithful to the Roman Pontiff, often at the cost of great suffering,” he wrote.
“They, in no way, ascribe to a schismatic or sedevacantist ideology.” he added.
In his statement the Cardinal admitted that “yes, there are individuals and even certain groups which espouse radical positions, even as is the case in other sectors of Church life, but they are, in no way, characteristic of the greater and ever increasing number of faithful who desire to worship God according to the UA.”
“The Sacred Liturgy,” he explained, “is not a matter of so-called ‘Church politics’ but the fullest and most perfect encounter with Christ for us in this world.”
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“The faithful, in question, among whom are numerous young adults and young married couples with children, encounter Christ, through the UA, Who draws them ever closer to Himself through the reform of their lives and cooperation with the divine grace which flows from His glorious pierced Heart into their hearts,” he said.
According to Cardinal Burke, “if there are situations of an attitude or practice contrary to the sound doctrine and discipline of the Church, justice demands that they be addressed individually by the pastors of the Church, the Roman Pontiff and the Bishops in communion with him. Justice is the minimum and irreplaceable condition of charity.”
“A schismatic spirit or actual schism are always gravely evil, but there is nothing about the UA which fosters schism,” he said.
Article 1 of Traditionis custodes states that the “liturgical books promulgated by Saint Paul VI and Saint John Paul II, in conformity with the decrees of Vatican Council II, are the unique expression of the lex orandi [“the law of prayer”] of the Roman Rite.”
“The correct interpretation of Article 1 cannot be the denial that the UA is an ever-vital expression of ‘the lex orandi of the Roman Rite,’” Cardinal Burke wrote in response. “Our Lord Who gave the wonderful gift of the UA will not permit it to be eradicated from the life of the Church,” he added.
“The severity of these documents naturally generates a profound distress and even sense of confusion and abandonment. I pray that the faithful will not give way to discouragement but will, with the help of divine grace, persevere in their love of the Church and of her pastors, and in their love of the Sacred Liturgy,” he wrote.
Cardinal Burke concluded by asking Catholics to pray for Pope Francis.
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“I urge the faithful to pray fervently for Pope Francis, the Bishops and priests,” he said. “At the same time, in accord with can. 212, §3, ‘[a]ccording to the knowledge, competence, and prestige which they possess, they have the right and even at times the duty to manifest to the sacred pastors their opinion on matters which pertain to the good of the Church and to make their opinion known to the rest of the Christian faithful, without prejudice to the integrity of faith and morals, with reverence toward their pastors, and attentive to common advantage and the dignity of persons.’”