Well, it's official: Cardinal Burke has been relieved of his position at the Apostolic Signatura and retired out to the Knights of Malta. I say retired out because, since its inception, not that long ago (1961), the position of Cardinalis Patronus has been one given to Cardinals as they retired from other appointments. The Cardinal's successor at the Signatura is a diplomat, Archbishop Dominique Mamberti.
The Holy Father is entitled to appoint anyone or release anyone - he is Supreme Pontiff, and as he does so we can only hope that he does so for the good of the Church and the promotion of the faith. We also hope that a pope can put personal animosity to one side for the sake of the good of the Church. That does not always happen, and the Church can suffer when a pope uses his office to settle personal scores - it is also scandalous for a pontiff to do so.
Cardinal Burke's series of demotions have been publicly humiliating for him and many are speculating that Francis is settling scores against the American Cardinal. I do not know what is going on inside the Pope's head, or what his plans are - he is a most ambiguous man, but I hope that what seems to be is not, in reality, what it seems to be.
Fr Z's comments are interesting. Rumours abound - next on the list: Cardinal Muller. I hope not.