My mother-in-law claims that an early Easter means an early spring. A late Easter means that spring will take her time in arriving. The rule is proven true this year. We have been tormented with a seemingly endless winter. Warm temperatures are finally melting the snows, but our joy is tempered with dire forecasts of yet another spring flood.
My husband is convinced that we don`t have to seek suffering in Lent. It will find us. He admits that this just might be a personal superstition. I wonder if the seasonal reality of life in the northern part of the world adds to the emotional heaviness during these Lenten weeks.
The weather on the Canadian prairies is almost always in synch with our liturgical seasons. The snows and frigid colds of December add to the beauty of Advent and Christmas. In night`s deep stillness describes well the silent beauty of falling snow on a dark, December night. The brilliance of winter white acts as the perfect back-drop to colourful lights and decorations as we celebrate the joy of the Incarnation.
By February, the snow has turned to frozen drifts, dirtied by road sand and debris. Each snow-fall and blizzard is met with groans as treacherous roads are navigated or travel plans are changed. The winter of February and March is the ugly cousin of December`s Christmas card beauty. A Lenten mood descends on all.
Ah, but then no one appreciates spring like prairie folk! Our leaves are gone by September, and often don`t return in their fullness until late May or early June. By this time of the year, we are all craving green. We search for the first buds on the trees, the first tiny shoots from the ground. We rejoice to see the farmers finally get on the fields, and pray for God`s blessing for a fruitful year. We have reason to rejoice in the promise of new life at Easter!
How do the seasons in your part of the world affect your experience of Lent and Easter?