I consider it my yearly duty to encourage people about life, vis a vis, the weather.
The genius of the Church's liturgical year is its arrangement of its two major feasts around the sun, quite frankly. I have probably said this before, but in those days when I was trudging out life as a new convert, dying to enter either into religious life or the diocesan seminary, trudging it out in an environment far too secular for my liking at that point, at Dalhousie University, one of my chief joys was expecting the Triduum. I was an altar boy at my home church, St. Thomas More, in Dartmouth, and it seemed to me that in those years our practice for the Triduum liturgies always coincided with the end of the university year. I always arrived at the church, excited for the upcoming holy feasts, the end of Lenten sacrifice, and the end of the school year.
Whether I knew it or not, the weather played a role in this joy. And so as we are soon to enter into Lent, I do not think that we usually enter into it sadly. I think we really do anticipate the coming Easter joy, the rebirth of the universe in the death and Resurrection of the Lord. "See how my Father renews all things," said Christ in Gibson's movie. Awesome.
So, the days are getting longer. I might not really be warming up yet - the fact that my body considers - 20c not all that cold, is not because it is objectively warmer out now. It will warm up eventually, but the days are longer. Women with their little ones will be able to get out again very soon for their daily strolls; old people too, without fear of falling.
Today in Barry's Bay, the sun rose at 7:16 and will set at 5:33.
In one week from today, the sun will rise at 7:05 and will set at 5:44.
Two weeks from today, the sun will rise at 6:53 and will set at 5:54.
It wasn't so long ago that it set before 5:00.
Daylight savings time begins on March 9th this year.
There is a cool website that allows you to make your own calendar with this info on it.
I have met a lot of blue people over the last few weeks. So I hope you will be encouraged by my little observations here.
God made the weather and the seasons as a symbol of our spiritual weather. Darkness is the result of sin, and sin leads to unhappiness. And, one's heart is cold without the light of Christ.
And, sometimes we need to go through times of spiritual darkness so that we will love the light more.
So cheer up. The Son rises in our midst.
We'll have this again, pretty soon. The colds and flus will be no more. As long as we took something with us from our winter experience: a renewed awareness of God's gifts and of our need for His warming light.