Roman Catholic cardinals have convened a meeting at the Vatican to plan Pope John Paul's funeral.
The church leaders, many of whom have just arrived in the Vatican from their distant homelands, gathered today (Monday) for the first time since the 84-year-old pontiff died on Saturday.
Church officials expect about 100 heads of state to attend the funeral, which will take place sometime between Wednesday and Friday, according to tradition that dictates a pope should be buried four to six days after his death.
There is no word if John Paul left any instructions before he died, including whether he wanted to be buried in a crypt beneath St. Peter's Basilica at the Vatican ( -- the final resting place of most other popes -- ) or in his native Poland.
Later today, the pope's body will be moved to the basilica from the Apostolic Palace ( -- where he lived and died -- ) in a solemn procession across St. Peter's Square. Crowds are already waiting to pass through security gates.
The Vatican and the Italian government are preparing tight security for events surrounding the funeral, since up to 2 million visitors are expected to head to Rome this week.
After a public Mass in St. Peter's Square Sunday, cardinals and archbishops from around the world, Italian political leaders and other dignitaries went to the palace to view the pope's body. Another private viewing is under way today.