I have to be honest. Despite all the papal visit blogging I have been doing here, it has mainly been because of the extraordinary number of hits rather than my own personal excitement.
I know you are all saying, "Huh? You aren't excited about it?" Well, yes and no. I am thrilled that he is here because I think it will help the U.S. see him as he really is, rather than the caricature which the media and others present.
But, I have already seen Pope Benedict four times, so my excitement at seeing him in person has been rather low key. If someone told me that I was going to go up and greet him personally I would be jumping out of my seat, but I won't be. Instead, I will be sitting on a bleacher behind the altar, behind the column, in the rain (threat of thunderstorms), to see the Pope on a Jumbotron. (Especially when I just found out that I could have gotten field seats)
It's quite a disappointment compared to my previous papal encounters. The first time I was literally close enough to touch him. The next two times I was in the first row in St. Peter's Square. The fourth time I was further away, but still close enough to see him very well.
However, after watching the coverage of the papal events I am reminded of the first time I saw Pope Benedict and the I don't care if I am getting wet in the obstructed view, cheap seats. I want to welcome my Holy Father to my country and show him the love which America has for him, the Church, and the office of the Pope.
After all, that is what it's all about.
By the way, does anyone can connections where I can greet Pope Benedict personally? Hey, it was worth asking!