Analysis: Pope Francis centralizes authority with reform of Diocese of Rome – Catholic World Report

Archbishop Jerome Lloyd OSJVPosted by

It was widely anticipated that a major reform of the Diocese of Rome was coming, as Pope Francis has been thinking about it for some time.

Pope Francis presides over the funeral Mass for Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI in St. Peter’s Square on Jan. 5, 2023. / Vatican Media

Rome Newsroom, Jan 15, 2023 / 11:00 am (CNA).

It was widely anticipated that a major reform of the Diocese of Rome was coming, as Pope Francis has been thinking about it for some time.

But no one expected it to come when it did: On Jan. 6, one day after the funeral of Francis’ predecessor as Bishop of Rome, Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI.

With the reform, Pope Francis firmly took over the reins of the vicariate, or hierarchy, of the diocese. Everything is centralized, and everything must pass, at least formally, under the control of the pontiff.

Cardinal Angelo de Donatis, the pope’s vicar for the diocese, sees his role deeply diminished. The diocese’s auxiliary bishops strengthen their direct link with the pope. In the end, the pope has made it clear that he is the one who also formally presides over the Episcopal Council, a new body established as an “expression of synodality.”

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Analysis: Pope Francis centralizes authority with reform of Diocese of Rome – Catholic World Report

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