In 2012, Tony Flannery, an Irish priest and religious writer, found out the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, the Vatican’s watchdog group, was displeased with some of his writings about the church.
Monday two former St. Louis archbishops, Cardinal Raymond Burke and Cardinal Justin F. Rigali, lost their posts on the Congregation for Bishops. This powerful Vatican committee nominates priests to be bishops worldwide. It meets on alternate Thursdays in Rome.
While Rigali's removal is not unexpected since he is retired with the title Philadelphia archbishop emeritus, the Burke move is dramatic.
Burke is a Vatican cardinal "in full" and head of the tribunal of last resort, which can countermand bishops when they want to remove priests from the clerical state, for example.