Speculation has arisen, as it has for the past two conclaves, whether the church may end up with an American pope. This is highly unlikely, as it wouldn’t be deemed desirable to have the head of the global church be from the world’s sole superpower.
Even so, we can’t complain. Although the U.S. has only 6 percent of the world’s 1.2 billion Catholics, we have the second-highest number of cardinal electors of any country. We have 11, and first-place Italy has 28. In third place is Germany, with six.
Even with the increasing number of Catholics in other regions of the world, Europe still has the most cardinal electors. The breakdown is: Europe, 62; North America, 17; South America, 13; Africa, 11; Asia, 11, Central America, 3; Oceania (Pacific region) 1.