Archbishop Burke appointed to head Vatican’s ‘bar association’

Archbishop Raymond Burke
Archbishop Raymond Burke


On Tuesday, the former Archbishop of St. Louis, Raymond Burke, received an appointment from Pope Benedict XVI making him the head of the Vatican’s bar association.

In addition to his duties as the prefect of the Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura, Archbishop Burke will now serve as the president of the Commission for Advocates. The president of the commission is in charge of admitting canon lawyers to the Vatican’s "bar association."

Those who are admitted to represent the Holy See in the Apostolic Signatura must be qualified by "a suitable preparation attested by appropriate academic degrees, and at the same time be recommended by their example of a Christian life, honorable character, and expertise," according to the Apostolic Constitution "Pastor Bonus."

The large majority of Burke’s time will still be dedicated to running the Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura. The Church’s Supreme Court, as the Signatura is sometimes called, oversees the administration of justice within the Church, examining administrative matters referred to it by the Congregations of the Roman Curia, as well as questions committed to it by the Holy Father.