(KITTREDGE) As spring flirts with our eager spirits, it’s sobering to realize that we’re still deep in Lent. Lent starts 40 days before Easter, which this year is April 24, almost as late as possible. Easter is dictated by a formula established in 325 AD at the Council of Nicaea which states that it shall fall on the first Sunday after the first full moon after the vernal equinox.
Whether you observe Lent rigorously, in a haphazard fashion, or not at all, recent international events have brought many of us to our knees. Even before the earthquake, tsunami and nuclear crisis hit Japan, it seemed that countries in the Middle East were being driven by enormous waves of hope, protest, despair and anger.
This year I signed up for a Lenten Carbon Fast, cutting back not on chocolate – gracious, no! – but on my own carbon footprint. The New England Regional Environmental Ministries shoots me an email early each morning with a suggestion for the day: turn off one lamp for the duration of the fast; build a compost bin, watch closely what food you throw away as the food discarded annually by an average household adds the equivalent CO2 emissions of 1-5 cars. The suggestions are pretty easy to do and this is both good and bad. Because while I turn off a light, lower the thermostat, heat the stir-fry yet again, the tsunami of global warming continues to rise before us.
The tsunami of global warming has left 50 inches of snow on the ground in Vermont.