Pope Francis' 2020 Challenge: New Curia, New Era for the Catholic Church

Updated: Jan 16, 2020

by Margaux Salcedo

2020 will be more than a new year or a new decade for the Roman Catholic Church. If Pope Francis is successful in his reorganization of the Curia, it marks a whole new era.

As you may know by now, His Eminence Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle was appointed Prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples or Propaganda Fide. The announcement was made last December 8 and Cardinal Tagle is set to leave for Rome by the end of the month or on the first week of February.

Roman Curia

The Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples is the congregation of the Roman Curia responsible for missionary work and related activities. It is also called the Sacred Congregation for the Propagation of Faith or Propaganda Fide.

At the outset it sounds like just a lot of missionary work, specifically evangelization, which is right up the alley of Cardinal Tagle, as he is considered one of the world's greatest evangelizers today, with his down-to-earth charisma and humor combined with his strong theological and academic background.

But the job is more than just simple evangelization.

The appointment means that Cardinal Tagle has been promoted to become part of the Roman Curia. The Curia is the central body through which the affairs of the Catholic Church are conducted; the central organization through which the church advances its objectives, and hence its heads act with the Pope's authority.

And Propaganda Fide is one of the largest curial departments. As it is charged with the Church’s missionary works and territories, the Cardinal will reportedly oversee roughly a fourth of all dioceses in the world or around 1,100 ecclesiastical jurisdictions. The office also controls the jurisdiction's financial resources and property holdings, including 957 real estate properties.

Praedicate Evangelium

The appointment of Cardinal Tagle is said to be only the first of what will be a series