• Peter Erdö, the current Archbishop of Budapest, Hungary. Erdö is seen as a moderate conservative who is well-respected within the church. He is also fluent in several languages, which would be an asset in a global role like the papacy.Opens in a new windowwww.ncregister.comPeter Erdö, cardinal
  • Mario Grech, the current Prefect of the Congregation for the Clergy. Grech is a rising star in the church and is known for his work on reforms. He is also seen as a bridge-builder between different factions within the church.Opens in a new windowen.wikipedia.orgMario Grech, cardinal
  • Pietro Parolin, the current Secretary of State of the Vatican. Parolin is a seasoned diplomat who has served in several high-level positions in the Vatican. He is also seen as a close advisor to Pope Francis.Opens in a new windowen.wikipedia.orgPietro Parolin, cardinal
Cardinal Christoph Schonborn of Vienna arrives for a session of the general congregation meeting at the Vatican in this March 8, 2013, file photo. Cardinal Schonborn recently did an interview with the Italian Jesuit journal, La Civilta Cattolica, about Pope Francis’ apostolic exhortation “Amoris Laetitia.” (CNS photo/Paul Haring) See VATICAN-LETTER-AMORIS July 7, 2016.
  • Christoph Schönborn, the current Archbishop of Vienna, Austria. Schönborn is a respected theologian and intellectual who is known for his work on interfaith dialogue. He is also seen as a moderate conservative who could appeal to a wide range of Catholics.Opens in a new windowwww.ncronline.orgChristoph Schönborn, cardinal
Il Presidente Mattarella con il Cardinale Matteo Zuppi, Arcivescovo di Bologna e il Cardinale Pietro Parolin, Segretario di Stato di Sua Santità(foto di Francesco Ammendola – Ufficio per la Stampa e la Comunicazione della Presidenza della Repubblica)
  • Matteo Zuppi, the current Archbishop of Bologna, Italy. Zuppi is a popular and charismatic figure who is known for his work with the poor and marginalized. He is also seen as a progressive who could bring a new voice to the papacy.Opens in a new windowen.wikipedia.orgMatteo Zuppi, cardinal

Of course, it is impossible to say for sure who will be the next pope. The decision will ultimately be up to the cardinals who vote in the conclave. However, these five cardinals are all seen as leading contenders and would all make strong popes.