No, we have quite a definite list of things. Is that list posted somewhere so we can see what is required for a union to take place? Or is it a secret?
BTW, there was floated a proposal in a recent book by a Ukranian Greek Catholic, to break up the Roman Church into various patriarchates along the Byzantine model. There would be a Patriarch of North America, a Patriarch of South America, a Patriarch of the Orient, a Patriarch of Africa, and the Pope would be the Patriarch of Europe. In this scenario, the RC Patriarchs would be more or less of equal status, except that the Patriarch of Europe would hold primacy of honor.
When the Pope was yet Joseph Ratzinger he pointed out the need to disentangle the confusion between the patriarchal and primatial roles of the bishop of Rome and to break up the Latin patriarchate, replacing it with a number of ""patriarchal areas," that is, regions with an autonomy similar to that of the ancient patriarchates, but under the direction of the episcopal conferences.
In an essay entitled "Primacy and Episcopacy," Ratzinger developed the theme
at greater length:
"The image of a centralized state which the Catholic church presented right up to the council
does not flow only from the Petrine office, but from its strict amalgamation with the patriarchal function which grew ever
stronger in the course of history and which fell to the bishop of Rome for the whole of Latin Christendom. The uniform canon
law, the uniform liturgy, the uniform appointment of bishops by the Roman centre: all these are things which are not
necessarily part of the primacy but result from the close union of the two offices. For that reason, the task to consider
for the future will be to distinguish again and more clearly between the proper function of the successor of Peter and the
patriarchal office and, where necessary, to create new patriarchates and to detach them from the Latin church. To
embrace unity with the pope would then no longer mean being incorporated into a uniform administration, but only
being inserted into a unity of faith and communion, in which the pope is acknowledged to have the power to give
binding interpretations of the revelation given in Christ whose authority is accepted whenever it is given in
After exploring the ecumenical implications of this vision, Ratzinger concluded:"Finally, in the not too distant future one could consider whether the churches of
Asia and Africa, like those of the East, should not present their own forms as autonomous* 'patriarchates'
or 'great churches' or whatever such ecclesiae in the Ecclesia might be called in the future."
Playing the optimist, I hope that this is the beginning of a long-term plan to bring these ideas quietly into reality, without causing alarm to the "hawks" and ultramontanists in the Roman Catholic Church.
* It is worth noticing that the Pope refers to these future Patriarchates as merely "autonomous." In other words he plans to keep them in submission to Rome and won't give them autocephaly. They will be of a lesser status than Orthodox Patriarchates.