It's the 15th of April. Your taxes are due, and Benedict XVI- Papa Ratzi- arrives in the United States for his first visit as Pope.
While he is here America will be inundated with special reports, eyewitness accounts, photo essays, in-depth analyses, and whatever else the jawboning classes are calling their output these days. DIH provides a lexicon for deciphering the upcoming coverage.
"Rigid." What Christ actually taught on any given matter. E.g., "he has a rigid interpretatin of 'sin.'"
"Reactionaries." 1. Priests who actually teach what Christ actually taught. 2. Referring to Catholic laymen: those who accept such teachings. (See related "fanaticism.")
"Fanaticism." The belief that the Commandments still count.
"Extremism." All ten of 'em.
"Academic freedom." An ancient chant. Translates as "give Charlie Curran his job back."
"Medieval." Anything that suggests you only get to sleep with your spouse.
"Oppression." This is a nifty word with a myriad of interpretations. It can mean anything from having babies to "do you think, Father, you might consider doing what the rubric says at this point in the liturgy?" Also known as "clamping down."
"Thinking Catholics." An old New York Times, phrase, meaning those Catholics who take their formation from the New York Times.
"German," "Germanic." Bad. Mean. Boring, Awful food. Everything "Thinking Catholics" should despise. Especially the food. Which this "German pope" is secretly plotting to force you to eat. Really. It's true. And don't think he's gong to make it up to you by letting you drive a fabulous German automobile, either. He's probably going to make owning a BMW or a Benz one of those new sins we've been hearing about. Unless he plans to make it mandatory. In which case he's being "Germanic."
"Pomp and Splendor. The pope's traditional red shoes. THe left one is "Pomp," the right one is "Splendor." Will probably be menioned a lot, as the Holy Father rarely goes about barefoot.
"Indulgence." What Catholics are gong to have to give the pundit classes a lot of over the next few days.