Cardinal Raymond Burke, a staunch conservative of the American Catholic Church who has become a leading critic of Pope Francis and a vaccine skeptic, was placed on a ventilator just days after testing positive for Covid-19.
“Doctors are encouraged by his progress”, official Twitter account of the cardinal announcement. Supporters were invited to “pray the rosary for him”.
The 73-year-old, who has often been seen without a mask in Rome, where he lives, tested positive last Wednesday during a visit to Wisconsin.
Burke noted then: “Thank God I am resting comfortably and receiving excellent medical care. Please pray for me as I begin my recovery. Let us trust in Divine Providence. God bless you. “
Last May, Burke spoke out forcefully against Covid-19 vaccines, saying, “It must be clear that vaccination itself cannot be imposed, in a totalitarian manner, on citizens. “
He also said that the vaccines had been developed “through the use of cell lines from aborted fetuses” and that “some kind of microchip should be placed under each person’s skin, so that at any time it can be state-controlled. concerning health and other matters that we can only imagine ”.
Health and disinformation experts have repeatedly refuted these conspiracy theories.
Cardinal Burke did not say if he had been vaccinated.
The former Archbishop of St. Louis was appointed cardinal by Pope Benedict XVI in 2010, but demoted from a managerial position in the Vatican by Pope Francis in 2014.
Burke is often seen as the leader of a faction opposed to Francis, whom he has publicly challenged on issues such as abortion and homosexuality.
In an interview with Buzzfeed in 2014, for example, Burke criticized Francis’ liberal beliefs about homosexuality, saying he had “done a lot of harm.”
In 2015, Burke said the Catholic Church had developed an “increasingly feminized environment,” stating: “Men are often reluctant to become active in the Church. The… Church’s lack of effort to engage men has led many men to simply withdraw.
The cardinal, who has close ties to former Trump adviser Steve Bannon, has also spoken out against immigration, saying: “In my opinion, to resist large-scale Muslim immigration is to be responsible.