Dicasteries in Praedicate Evangelium

In the reform of the curia called for in the Apostolic Constitution “Proclaim the Gospel,” one of the goals is “to reduce the number of Dicasteries, uniting those whose purpose was very similar or complementary, and to rationalize their functions with the aim of avoiding overlapping of competences and making work more effective” (art. 11).  In this new structure the major bodies are entitled “dicastery”, as opposed to Congregation or Council. The Constitution provides that all “organisms” are juridically equal, since their power is vicarious, from the the Pope, not their own. Nonetheless, their order reflects a certain primacy, beginning with the mission of the Church to “go forth and teach the gospel," including the doctrine of the faith and the ministry of charity, then those things connected with the communion of the Church. The Constitution provided that this structure became effective on Pentecost, 5 June 2022. 

Dicastery for Evangelization (articles 53 - 68)

Dicastery for the Doctrine of the Faith (69 - 78)

Dicastery for the Service of Charity (79 - 81)

Dicastery for the Eastern Churches (82 - 87)

Dicastery for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments (88 - 97) 

Dicastery for the Causes of Saints (98 - 102)

Dicastery for Bishops (103 - 112)

Dicastery for the Clergy (113 - 120)

Dicastery for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life (121 - 127)

Dicastery for the Laity, Family and Life (128 - 141) 

Dicastery for Promoting Christian Unity (142 - 146)

Dicastery for Interreligious Dialogue (147 - 152)

Dicastery for Culture and Education (153 - 162) 

Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development (163 - 174) 

Dicastery for Legislative Texts (175 - 182)

Dicastery for Communication (183 - 188)

Dicastery for Evangelization
Prefect: Cardinal Luis Antonio G. Tagle
Secretary: Archbishop Protase Rugambwa
Adjunct Secretary: Archbishop Giovanni Pietro Dal Toso

As decreed by Pope Francis' Apostolic Constitution Praedicate evangleium (PE), on 5 June 2022 the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples and the Pontifical Council for the New Evangelization were united into a single dicastery entitled the Dicastery for Evangelization. The subject matter of each of the former departments is largely represented by the two sections which make up the new dicastery.

It belongs to the first section to be concerned with "Fundamental Issues in World Evangelization" (PE 55-60), that is, mission generally, and thus, “… to study . . . the fundamental questions of evangelization and the development of an effective proclamation of the Gospel by identifying suitable forms, tools and language. . . [It] collects the most significant experiences in the field of evangelization making them available to the whole Church . . . [It] encourages reflection on the history of evangelization and mission, especially in their relations with the political, social and cultural events that have marked and conditioned the preaching of the Gospel." Also under its competence are promoting and supporting popular piety, the care of international shrines, of catechesis in the particular churches, including the confirmation of catechisms (together with the consent of the Dicastery for the Doctrine of the Faith), the proclamation of Divine Mercy (for which the Missionaries of Mercy are a particular instrument), and the promotion of religious freedom, as well as interreligious dialogue. 

It belongs to the second section "… to support the proclamation of the Gospel and the deepening of the life of faith in the territories of first evangelization and deals with everything that concerns the erection of ecclesiastical circumscriptions or their modifications, as well as their provisioning, and it carries out the other tasks in the same way as the Dicastery for Bishops does within the scope of its competence.

Dicastery for the Doctrine of the Faith
Prefect: Cardinal Luis Francisco Ladaria Ferrer, S.J.
Adjunct Secretaries: Abp. Joseph Augustine Di Noia, O.P. and Abp. Charles Jude Scicluna

This Dicastery, formerly called a Congregation, has the specific mission “to promote and safeguard the doctrine on faith and morals in the whole Catholic world. Therefore, those things belong to it which touch this matter in any way. Fulfilling the function of promoting doctrine, it fosters studies in order that the understanding of the faith might grow and that a response can be prepared under the light of faith for new questions arising from developments in science and human culture. It is a help to bishops, whether individually or gathered in assemblies, in the exercise of the function by which they are constituted authentic teachers and doctors of the faith as well as the office by which they are held to safeguard and promote the integrity of that faith. It reproves doctrines opposed to the principles of the faith, studies the books referred to it and, if necessary, reproves them. It also examines whatever concerns “the privilege of the faith” whether in law and in fact, as well as safeguards the sacrament of penance. 

Finally, the Prefect of the Dicastery for the Faith is also the President of the Pontifical Biblical Commission and the International Theological Commission. The Dicastery has, as well, the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors under its auspices. For details on these Commission see: Commissions

Dicastery for the Service of Charity
Prefect and Papal Almoner: Konrad Cardinal Krajewski

The Dicastery for the Service of Charity was established on 5 June 2022 by Pope Francis by his Apostolic Constitution Praedicate evangelium (19 March 2022). It took on the responsibilities of the Office of Papal Charity and those of the Papal Almoner, who is now its prefect. Its activities are directed to the most poor, least advantaged and the most marginalized people across the globe, administering and serving their needs on behalf of the Holy Father out of His personal budget dedicated for charity.

Website: https://www.elemosineria.va/

Dicastery for the Eastern Churches
Prefect: Cardinal Leonardo Sandri
Secretary: Abp. Cyril Vasil', S.J.
Undersecretary: Rev. Lorenzo Lorusso, O.P.

As of 5 June 2022 this curial department is renamed the Dicastery for the Eastern Churches. This dicastery considers those matters which touch on the Eastern Catholic Churches. Such Churches are those who use either ancient liturgical rites of their own (e.g. Maronites) or rites held in common with the Orthodox Churches, (e.g. Ukrainian and Ruthenian Catholics), yet are nonetheless in Communion with the Successor of St. Peter. The dicastery treats all questions which pertain either to persons, or to discipline, or to the rites of these Eastern, or Oriental, Churches. Territories in which a major part of the Christians belong to Eastern rites are subject only to this Congregation. Even in Latin territories it carefully supervises the faithful of the Eastern rites and provides as much as possible for their spiritual needs even by the establishment of their own hierarchy if the number of faithful and circumstances require this.

Dicastery for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments
Prefect: Archbishop Arthur Roche
Secretary: Abp. Vittorio Francesco Viola, O.F.M.
Undersecretary: Bishop Aurelio García Macías

As of 5 June 2022 this congregation is called the Dicastery for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments. It is responsible for those things which pertain to the Apostolic See as to the moderation and promotion of the sacred liturgy, especially the sacraments, with due regard for the competence of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. It fosters and safeguards the discipline of the sacraments, especially what pertains to their valid and licit celebration; moreover, it concedes favors and dispensations for matters which are not contained in the faculties of diocesan bishops in this line.

Dicastery for the Causes of Saints
Prefect: Cardinal Marcello Semeraro
Secretary: Archbishop Fabio Fabene
Undersecretary: Fr. Bogusław Stanisław Turek, C.S.M.A.

As of 5 June 2022 this congregation is called the Dicastery for the Causes of the Saints. Its competence extends to all matters which in any way pertain to the Beatification of Servants of God, the Canonization of the Blessed, or to the Preservation of Relics.

Dicastery for Bishops
Prefect: Cardinal Marc Ouellet, P.S.S.
Secretary: Archbishop Ilson de Jesus Montanari

As of June 2022 this congregation is called the Dicastery for Bishops. It examines what pertains to the constitution and provision of particular churches as well as the exercise of the episcopal function in the Latin Church, except that which belongs to the competence of the Dicastery for Evangelization. It belongs to the Dicastery for Bishops to propose to the Roman Pontiff, for approval, the constitution of new dioceses, provinces and regions; to divide, unite and realign them after consulting the interested Episcopal Conferences; it deals also with the erection of the military ordinariates and, after consulting the Episcopal Conference, prelacies for special pastoral ministries for various regions or social groups. It provides, as well, for the naming of bishops, apostolic administrators, coadjutors and auxiliaries of bishops, military and other vicars and prelates enjoying personal jurisdiction. It is competent for all things that have to do with bishops and publishes norms which, through the Episcopal Conference, provide for the more urgent needs of the faithful. The Prefect is also the President of the Pontifical Commission for Latin America.

Dicastery for the Clergy
Prefect: Archbishop Lazzaro You Heung-sik
Secretary: Archbishop Andrés Gabriel Ferrada Moreira
Undersecretary: Rev. Simon Renna

As of 5 June 2022 this congregation is called the Dicastery for the Clergy. With due regard for the rights of bishops and their conferences, this dicastery examines those things which concern priests and deacons of the secular clergy with regard to their persons, pastoral ministry, matters which are in support of the exercise of these things, and in all this provides opportune assistance to the bishops. It has many functions: it studies, proposes and urges the means and aids by which priests strive for sanctity. This office also has charge of everything which concerns the work and discipline of the diocesan clergy. Particularly, it promotes the preaching of the Word of God and the works of the apostolate and organization of catechesis, evaluates and approves pastoral and catechetical directories, fosters national and international Catechetical Congresses and indicates the opportune norms for religious instruction of children, young people and adults. The Dicastery looks also to the preservation and administration of the temporal goods of the Church without prejudice to the other dicasteries which have temporal goods committed to their vigilance. The Pontifical commission for The Conservation of the Artistic and Sacred Patrimony if directly responsible to the Dicastery for the Clergy.

Dicastery for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life
Prefect: Cardinal João Bráz de Aviz
Secretary: Archbishop José Rodriguez Carballo, O.F.M.
Undersecretaries: Sr. Nicoletta Vittoria Spezzati, A.S.C., Fr. Sebastiano Paciolla, O.Cist

As of 5 June 2022, this congregation is called the Dicastery for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life. Its principal function is to promote and supervise, in the whole Latin Church, the practices of the evangelical counsels as they are exercised in approved forms of consecrated life and at the same time the activities of societies of apostolic life, as well as take care of Secular Institutes, whose members make a true and complete profession of the evangelical counsels in the world.

Dicastery for the Laity, the Family and Life
Prefect: Cardinal Kevin Joseph Farrell
Secretary: Rev. Fr. Alexandre Awi Mello, I. Sch.

By his Motu Proprio Sedula Mater of 15 August 2015, Pope Francis combined the activities of the Pontifical Council for the Family and the Pontifical Council for the Laity into a single dicastery, in the new category “Dicastery”. The Dicastery is presided over by a prefect and assisted by a secretary and two lay under-secretaries and its members and consultors include men and women of the lay faithful, single and married, from different fields of activity and various parts of the world. It has responsibility to foster the development of the life and apostolate of the lay faithful, the pastoral care of young people, the family and its mission according to God's plan, and the protection and support of human life. 

The Dicastery encourages the active and responsible presence of the lay faithful in parish and diocesan life and in the consultative governing bodies of the universal Church. This derives from their shared responsibility for the life and mission of the Church by virtue of the sacrament of Baptism and according to the various charisms received, so that all can build up the Church together. It is therefore the responsibility of the Dicastery to advance the vocation and mission of the lay faithful in the Church and in the world, both as individuals and as members of associations, movements and communities, as well as to evaluate requests by episcopal conferences for new ministries and ecclesiastical offices to be established according to the needs of particular Churches, and to erect associations of the faithful and international ecclesial movements, and approve or recognize their statutes. 

Dicastery for Promoting Christian Unity
President: Cardinal Kurt Koch
Secretary: Bishop Brian Farrell, L.C.
Undersecretary: Msgr. Andrea Palmieri

On 5 June 2022 this council became the Dicastery for Promoting Christian Unity. Its function is to concentrate in an appropriate way on initiatives and ecumenical activities for the restoration of unity among Christians. It has charge of relations with those of other communities; considers the correct interpretation and observance of the principles of ecumenism; promotes Catholic groups and coordinates the efforts at unity, both on the national and international levels; institutes colloquies on ecumenical questions and activities with Churches and ecclesial communities separated from the Holy See; deputes Catholic observers for Christian congresses; invites to Catholic gatherings observers of the separated brethren; orders into practice conciliar decrees on ecumenical matters. 

In order to advance the relationship between Catholics and Jews, the Commission for Religious Relations with Judaism exists at the Dicastery. It is directed by the Prefect.

Dicastery for Interreligious Dialogue
President: Cardinal Miguel Angel Ayuso Guixot M.C.C.J.
Secretary: Rev. Fr. Indunil Janakaratne Kodithuwakku Kankanamalage

On 5 June 2022 this council became the Dicastery for Interreligious Dialogue. Its task is to foster and moderate relations with members and bodies of religions which do not carry the name of Christian, as well as with those who in any way possess a religious sensibility (cf. Pastor bonus 159). It fosters studies and promotes relations with non-Christians to bring about an increase in mutual respect and seeks ways to establish a dialogue with them; it receives and carefully weighs the wishes of the Ordinaries; it provides for the formation of those who participate in dialogue.

For the purpose of promoting relations with members of different religious beliefs, Commissions are established in the Dicastery, under the guidance of the Prefect. The Commission for Religious Relations with Muslims, for example, seeks to maintain positive theological dialogue with Islam. 

Dicastery for Culture and Education
President: Archbishop Gianfranco Ravasi
Delegate: Bishop Carlos Alberto de Pinho Moreira Azevedo
Secretary: Bishop Paul Tighe

On 5 June 2022 the Council for Culture was merged with the Congregation for Catholic Education and became the Dicastery for Culture and Education. It works “for the development of human values in people within the horizon of Christian anthropology, contributing to the full realization of the following of Jesus Christ.” (PE art. 153)  “The Dicastery is made up of the Section for Culture, which is dedicated to the promotion of culture, pastoral animation, and the valorization of the cultural patrimony, and the Section for Education, which develops the fundamental principles of education with reference to schools, higher institutes of Catholic and ecclesiastical studies and research, and is competent for hierarchical appeals in these matters” (ibid.). 

It also coordinates the activity of some Pontifical Academies, some of which are of ancient foundation, . . . . currently: the Pontifical Academy of Fine Arts and Letters of the Virtuous at the Pantheon; the Pontifical Roman Academy of Archaeology; the Pontifical Academy of heology; the Pontifical Academy of St. Thomas; the Pontifical International Marian Academy; the Pontifical Academy Cultorum Martyrum; the Pontifical Academy of Latinity." (PE art. 162)

Dicastery for Promoting Integral human Development
Prefect: Cardinal Michael Czerny, S.J. (serving ad interim)
Secretary: Sr. Alessandra Smerilli, F.M.A. (serving ad interim)

[D]evelopment cannot be restricted to economic growth alone. To be authentic, it must be well rounded; it must foster the development of each man and of the whole man.(Pope St. Paul VI, Encyclical Populorum progressio)

The Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development was erected by Pope Francis on 17 August 2016 by an Apostolic Letter issued Motu proprio and given the responsibilities of four Vatican entities: the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, the Pontifical Council “Cor Unum”, the Pontifical Council for Pastoral Care of Migrants and Itinerant People, and the Pontifical Council for Pastoral Health Care Workers. 

According to its statutes, the Dicastery expresses the Holy Father's concern for issues of justice and peace, including those related to migration, health, charitable works and the care of creation. It also promotes integral human development in the light of the Gospel and in the tradition of the Church’s social teachings. Finally, it expresses the Holy Father’s care for suffering humanity, including the needy, the sick and the excluded, and pays special attention to the needs and issues of those who are forced to flee their homeland, the stateless, the marginalized, victims of armed conflicts and natural disasters, the imprisoned, the unemployed, victims of contemporary forms of slavery and torture, and others whose dignity is endangered, including refugees and migrants.

Toward these ends it studies the social teaching of the Church and works to make it widely known and implemented, and so that social, economic and political relations are increasingly imbued with the spirit of the Gospel. It likewise collects information and research in the areas of justice and peace, the development of peoples, the promotion and defence of human dignity and human rights, such as rights pertaining to work, including that of minors; the phenomenon of migration and the exploitation of migrants; human trafficking and enslavement; imprisonment, torture and capital punishment; disarmament and arms control as well as armed conflicts and their effects on the civilian population and the natural environment (humanitarian law). It evaluates these data and informs the episcopal agencies of the conclusions drawn, so that they may intervene directly where appropriate. It also works with public and private, governmental and non-governmental, agencies and associations in order to promote study, deepen knowledge, and public awareness on the matters and concerns in its responsibilities.

Dicastery for Legislative Texts
President: Archbishop Filippo Iannone, O.Carm,
Secretary: Bishop Juan Ignacio Arrieta Ochoa de Chinchetru

On 5 June 2022 the Council for the Interpretation of Legislative Texts became the Dicastery for Legislative Texts. Its function consists especially in interpreting the Church's laws, especially the Code of Canon Law. In doing so it consults with other Roman dicasteries appropriate to the particular questions before it, and, receiving the consent of the Pontiff, issues authoritative interpretations binding on the Church. It also settles questions which arise concerning the conformity of laws by lesser authorities to the general law of the Church, as well as assisting other dicasteries, bishops and bishops conferences, in juridical-legal matters. 

Dicastery for Communication
Prefect: Paolo Ruffini
Secretary: Msgr. Lucio Adrián Ruiz

On 27 June 2015 Pope Francis established the Secretariat for Communication in an Apostolic Letter issued Motu Proprio, consolidating the Pontifical Council for Social Communications and "all of the realities which, in various ways up to the present have dealt with communications" in order to "respond ever better to the needs of the mission of the Church". In a letter of 5 July 2018, the Pope renamed the Secretariat as the Dicastery for Communication. 

The Dicastery includes the following media entities: Holy See Press Office, Vatican Internet Service, Vatican Radio, Vatican Television Center, L' Osservatore Romano (a daily newspaper in Italian and weekly in English and other languages),  Photographic Service, Vatican Printing House, Vatican Polyglot Press. It also has responsibility for the Holy See’s website (vatican.va) and the Twitter service of the Supreme Pontiff (@pontifex).

The Media Entities of the Holy See

Website of the Dicastery for Communication