Thursday, June 25, 2009

On the Agenda....

While the Holy See's offered little to no public comment on Pope Benedict's 10 July meeting with President Obama since the audience's first report on Tuesday, the Roman reception came up at yesterday's White House press briefing.

Announcing the stop from his podium in Washington, Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said that "the President will visit with the Holy Father Pope Benedict XVI to discuss a range of issues, including their shared belief in the dignity of all people."

The spokesman said that Obama will be accompanied by his wife, Michelle.

Anticipating another query that's come up lately in the briefing room, Gibbs added that the First Family still had yet to select a home-church in the capital five months into their stay in DC.

Tip to Paulson.

SVILUPPO: More from the wire's longtime man in Rome, Victor Simpson... who joins others in noting the significance of the 4pm audience's unusual timing:
Such meetings in the afternoon are unusual for the tradition-conscious Vatican — most are held [before] midday. The Vatican clearly sought to accommodate Obama's busy schedule, a sign of Benedict's interest in meeting the American president.
The President will make his first PopeVisit straight from quake-ravaged L'Aquila, where the Italian-led G8 Summit ends a few hours earlier.

For the record, though, don't expect an encore of last year's walk in the Gardens.