Although I guess I shouldn't be after living here for 10 years, I was a little surprised that the Pope's visit to the U.S. was the lead story on the local news tonight. I mean, it's not like he showed up here. But then, this is a major Catholic town, so I guess it's relevant.
As a non-Catholic, I can't really get into the whole pope thing. I was raised as a Presbyterian and then started attending the Episcopal church when I was a teenager--not a hard decision, as my stepfather is an Episcopal priest. The Episcopal church works for me--as my brother Andrew likes to say, it's "Catholic-lite." (All of the tradition, none of the guilt.)
I wasn't quite sure what to make of ol' Pope Benedict for the first couple of years. At the risk of offending some Catholics, the whole Hitler youth thing kind of creeped me out a bit. But, any man who shows such obvious disdain for George W. Bush gains a little more esteem in my book. I love that the Pope declined to attend the birthday dinner in his honor at the White House. My kind of pope.