Cardinal Burke’s Advice for Those Tempted to Leave the Church

By pintswaquinas July 9, 2024

Does the constant chaos in the Church — bewildering statements from the pope and wayward clergy — ever make you look for greener pastures? Many Catholics are jumping ship into Sedevacantism, Orthodoxy, Protestantism and even atheism.

Cardinal Raymond Burke recently shared with us the advice he gives to Catholics who are tempted to leave the Church because of its problems.

“. . . I have encountered frequently — especially over the past years — people who see the sin in the Church and forget that the Church is not sin. The Church is a Divine reality. The Church was founded by our Lord Jesus Christ. The Church is holy in itself, but made up of sinful men who can, from time to time, cause this Church great suffering and tarnish the beauty of the Church by their scandalous behavior.

“My response is this: Christ told us, as he was about to ascend to the Father . . . he told the apostles to go out and to preach the gospel to all the nations, baptizing in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, communicating the Divine Life in every time and every place. And then he said, ‘And I will be with you until the last day,’ until his final coming. And he promised that, and I’m not going to abandon him.

Locals with Matt Fradd Pints with Aquinas

“He’s in his holy Church. And no matter what anybody is doing — wherever it is — to distract from the beauty, from the truth that is in the Church, I’m going to remain with our Lord and be faithful to him and trust in his promise that he is with us, that he is going to make all of this right. But I certainly cannot see how I’m doing God’s will by abandoning our Lord in the Church.

“When he was in the Garden of Gethsemane undergoing his agony, he asked the apostles to watch with him, to pray with him . . . He suffers in his Church, but we’re there with him and we’re praying with him — praying with him and being faithful to what he teaches us.

“. . . St. Paul put it very plainly. He said if anybody teaches you — even an angel from heaven should arrive to teach you — something different from that which I’ve handed on to you — the sacred tradition — let him be anathema,’ excommunicated from the Church. 

“[W]e know that the devil hates our Lord. And he hates the fact that we human beings — the only earthly creatures made in God’s own image and likeness — can enjoy the friendship of God. And so he tries in every way, through his lies and deceptions, [to] draw us away from Christ. But we remain with him [Christ].

“My advice is stay with our Lord and His holy Church. Trust him and his promises. [In] your daily life — according to your vocation, according to whatever gifts God has given to you, whatever responsibilities you have— be absolutely the best Christian you can be.”


Become part of the Pints With Aquinas community by supporting the show on Locals. Depending on the amount of your monthly gift, you’ll get access to some pretty awesome perks, from the “Morning Coffee” podcast to monthly spiritual direction videos from Fr. Gregory Pine!



Find this mug, apparel, books and more on the official Pints with Aquinas online store.