Pope Francis enters the ninth year of his pontificate on March 13, and the coordinator of the Council of Cardinals, Cardinal Óscar Rodríguez Maradiaga, told Rome Reports that one of the most difficult challenges has been getting financial entities related to the Vatican City State under control. Restructuring the Institute for the Works of Religion, known as the Vatican bank, was one such example. Cardinal Maradiaga pointed out that Pope Francis has actually made three types of reforms: Spiritual reform, through his gestures and establishing events such as the Jubilee of Mercy; Ecclesiological reform, by asking the Church to reflect on synodality; and institutional reforms, by reorganizing Vatican dicasteries, promoting economic transparency, and fighting sexual abuse.

“Some are talking about this being a final stage of the pontificate,” said the cardinal. “I say no: it is a new stage of the pontificate.”

The new stage consists, said the cardinal, of consolidating his reforms through new appointments — which would mean not only naming new cardinals but also dicastery heads who strengthen those reforms.

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