Pope Benedict XVI today appointed Dominican Father Joseph Augustine DiNoia to be Secretary to the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments.

Archbishop-elect DiNoia, who turns 66 next month, was born in New York of Italian parents and grew up in the Bronx. He was ordained a priest in the Dominican Order in 1970. With his appointment, he is elevated to titular Archbishop of Oregon City.

Since 2002, he has been Under-Secretary at the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. He was also a member of the International Theological Commission from 1997-2002 and for seven years was Secretary for the Doctrinal Commission of the U.S. Bishops Conference.

Archbishop-elect DiNoia is also a member of the Pontifical Academy of Theology and the Pontifical Academy of St. Thomas Aquinas. He is also the author of books and numerous articles and book reviews.

Speculation has existed for some time that Archbishop-elect DiNoia would be appointed to be second-in-charge of the liturgy at the Vatican. Having worked for three years under Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger at the CDF, he will now serve under Cardinal Antonio Cañizares Llovera who has been nicknamed the “little Ratzinger” because of his closeness in thought to the Pope.

An avid reader with an eclectic taste in books, Archbishop-elect DiNoia is also a loyal reader of the Register.

Update: Archbishop-elect DiNoia replaces Archbishop Albert Malcom Ranjith Patabendige Don who was today appointed as the new Archbishop of Colombo, Sri Lanka.

A Vatican official told me that while Archbishop Ranjith’s transfer “will be a great loss to the Vatican,” it will be “a great gain for Sri Lanka.”