Let's read Whispers in the Loggia.
While the Stateside audience has spent the morning fixed on the CDF's LCWR summit, a much less conspicuous piece of related news slipped into today's Vatican's Daily Bollettino could prove at least as significant.
Amid months of speculation that's increasingly tipped him as the front-runner to succeed the soon-to-retire Cardinal William Levada at the helm of the former "Holy Office," Bishop Gerhard Ludwig Müller of Regensburg was quietly given a seat on two key Curial dicasteries at Roman Noon by the Pope. [So he really is headed to Rome.]
Said to be particularly close to Benedict [that is the management style of the Holy Father, which quite frankly is not surprising.]-- whose held his last professorship in Regensburg during the 1970s -- the 64 year-old theologian was surreptitiously added to the memberships of the Congregation for Catholic Education and the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity.
Given the crucial tie-in of doctrinal matters with the church's educational institutions and ecumenical efforts, Levada is the lone senior Curialist who currently has a vote in both offices.
On the reigning pontiff's appointment, Muller -- bishop of Regensburg since 1992 -- has been a member of CDF for the last several years.
Beyond the long trail of buzz pointing to the German as the next "Grand Inquisitor," the announcement is likely to spike chatter as, at least for some, today's move recalls an apparent precedent.
In early May 2008, it sparked notice in some quarters when then-Archbishop Raymond Burke of St Louis was quietly named to two dicasteries, the Congregation for the Clergy and the Pontifical Council for the Interpretation of Legislative Texts. Less than two months later, Benedict called Burke to Rome full-time as prefect of the Apostolic Signatura, the church's "chief justice."
[This gets interesting here.]
Other notable prelates figured into this morning's batch of nods to the two offices. Among them, Manila's Archbishop Chito Tagle -- the 54 year-old CUA alum named to lead Asia's largest diocese late last year -- and Bishop Charles Morerod OP of Lausanne and Geneva (a former rector of the Angelicum) were tapped to join the Catholic Education table, while Bishop Don Bolen of Saskatoon, the onetime lead pointman for the church's relations with Anglicans and Methodists at the Unity council, now returns to his alma mater as a member.
Considering his expertise on (and close engagement with) the Orthodox world, likewise named to the latter body was the head of Catholicism's largest Eastern church: the de facto patriarch of the 6 million-member Ukrainian Greek-Catholic flock, Major Archbishop Sviatoslav Shevchuk of Kiev, who at 42 is almost certain to become the youngest cardinal in the last half-century in the not too distant future.
Interesting movements in the Vatican.
So, after the pallium this June 24 for Tagle, the red hat soon?
With all indication, it might be.