Instead of going up against the machine, Benedict XVI limits himself to placing here and there in the curia his trusted men: from Albert Malcolm Ranjith Patabendige Don of Sri Lanka, made secretary of the congregation for divine worship, to his former right hand man at the congregation for the doctrine of the faith, Bertone. Or he calls in prominent personalities from the outside: like Brazilian cardinal Cláudio Hummes, and the former archbishop of Bombay, Ivan Dias.
But meanwhile, entire sections of the curia continue to drift, including the pivotal area of communications. The pontifical council that should concern itself with this has a new president as of June 27, Claudio Maria Celli, who has replaced the American bishop John P. Foley, now the pro-grand master of the equestrian order of the Holy Sepulcher. But the change doesn’t promise anything good: the pontifical council for social communications is a champion of non-productivity, and has been deprived of the position of secretary for years. “L’Osservatore Romano,” too, is a shadow of its former glory, and drags itself along while awaiting a new director who never arrives.
Much more than curia appointments, Benedict XVI has at heart the appointment of bishops.
He dedicates much greater attention to these than John Paul II did. Before giving his permission, the pope keeps the dossiers of the designates on his desk for up to two or three weeks. And sometimes he rejects them, without giving an explanation to the competent curia dicastery presided over by cardinal Giovanni Battista Re.
Pope Ratzinger is very demanding; he wants bishops of quality, and doesn’t always find them. The pace of episcopal appointments has fallen by a quarter with him, in comparison with the previous pontificate.
So, there's an intelligence behind the chaotic appearance. Interesting article.