Pope Francis said while the Curia is called to "always improve and grow in communion," it is also prone to "disease, malfunction, and infirmity" like every human institution.
The pope did not say which prelates would be named cardinals, but the names are expected to be made public in mid-January.
Cardinal Christoph Schönborn also said open controversy is "absolutely essential" when discussing the future of the Catholic church.
Faith and Justice: Pope Francis' planned reform of the Curia continues to roll along. Potentially up next? The creation of a new congregation just for the laity.
NCR Today: Streets of Ferguson erupt; Francis discusses reform inside the Curia; new reality TV show to air featuring religious life; Houston Catholic Charities facing lawsuit
A Roman Observer: If reports on the reform scheme are correct, the pope has decided that several councils established after Vatican II will be merged into major congregations.
NCR Today: Pope Francis is moving ahead with plans to reform the Curia, meeting Monday with the heads of each of the Vatican's various departments to discuss pending changes.
A Roman Observer: Pope Francis' transfer of Cardinal Raymond Burke has intensified yet more irresponsible talk of schism within the Catholic church.
Pope Francis removed U.S. Cardinal Raymond Burke as head of the Vatican's highest court and named him to a largely ceremonial post.
Cardinal Walter Kasper gave a 50-minute lecture on the meaning and significance of Pope Francis on Thursday at The Catholic University of America.