Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Easter - never again in your lifetime

Megan with You-Know-Who

Easter is early this year. Easter is always the first full moon after the Spring Equinox (which is March 20). This dating of Easter is based on the lunar calendar that the Hebrew people used to identify passover, which is why it moves around on our Roman calendar.

Based on the above information, Easter can actually be one day earlier (March 22) but that is rare.

Here's the interesting part:

This year is the earliest Easter any of us will ever see the rest of our lives! And only the most elderly of our population have ever seen it this early (95 years old or above). And none of us have ever, or will ever, see it a day earlier!

It's a fact: The next time Easter will be this early (March 23) will be the year 2228 (220 years from now). The last time it was this early was 1913 (so if you're 95 or older, you are the only ones that were around for that!).

The next time it will be a day earlier, March 22, will be in the year 2285 (277 years from now). The last time it was March 22 was 1818. So, no one alive today has or will ever see it any earlier than this year!

Why, you ask?

Here's the condensed version. The Roman Empire's First Council of Nicaea convened in the year 325. The counsel decided three things:
1. They decided the rules that would determine the date of Easter.
2. Easter would always fall on Sunday throughout the world.
3. The date Easter would fall on could be determined indefinitely into the future.

So how is Easter day determined? Easter is always the first Sunday after the first full moon after the Spring Equinox (March 20). Just a tad confusing but as a result, Easter can never occur before March 22 or later than April 25 and the actual date that Easter falls on this year is the earliest you and I will ever see, in our lifetime.

Clayton Boyer from New Orleans did the research. Columnists Gordie Allen and Ramona Salmon featured this information.

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