Cardinal Francis George says he knows who he wants to succeed him, but he's keeping the information close to the vest.
George says he's forwarded to Apostolic Nuncio Vigano a list of three names that he feels would be a worthy successor.
"They always ask you to give us three names, so I have," George said.
Those three individuals were likely attending the American Catholic Bishops gathering in New Orleans Wednesday, what will likely be George's last meeting as Chicago's acting archbishop.
But whoever George favors, the Vatican will still need to agree. It will be Pope Francis' first significant appointment during his tenure.
George says he'd like to travel to Rome to meet with Pope Francis one-on-one before his tenure is over.
Archbishop Wilton Gregory was on the short list, but may no longer be after a controversy surrounding a large home he built in Atlanta.
"I don't go to sleep at night expecting a phone call," Gregory said.
San Antonio Archbishop Gustavo Garcia Siller is also a rumored possibility.
"It's one of the most important churches in the country, because of the history, because of the location itself, and the richness," Siller said.
Other names mentioned as possible successors include Louisville Archbishop Joseph Kurtz and Indianapolis' Joseph Tobin, along with the archbishop to the military, Timothy Broglio.
"It's not something I've ever thought about but one serves where the church asks one to serve," Broglio said.