Arrival in about 5 hours ...
On the plane, the major story has been his absolute rejection of pedophilia in the priesthood.
Here's the Economist's take on the visit, predictably, through an entirely political lens: in the lead up to the war on Iraq, the Vatican and the Bush Administration were poles apart. Now they seem to be cozying up. Bush might hope that Benedict's appeal among American conservatives will help his popularity. Conservative intellectuals, even non-Catholics like his tough approach on Islam and soft-minded liberalism. However, there are all those disaffected liberal Catholics. Here's a particularly risible line, with references to his visit to Ground Zero: "His handling of that event, in particular, will be an indicator of how willing the pope is to accept conservative America's warmly-extended invitation to become a moral leader of the "war on terror"."
:: sigh :: I love the Economist. When it comes to religion, most of the time, they're no better in quality than a supermarket tabloid.