Here is this week’s People’s Letters Page…
Easter is a movable feast, meaning the date changes each year and this year will fall a week earlier than Easter 2020.
Easter Sunday will be on 4 April and Good Friday will be on 2 April.
The latest Easter Sunday has ever been was in 1943, when it fell on 25 April.
This will not occur again until 2038.
The earliest possible date for Easter Sunday is 22 March.
The last time an Easter occurred that early was 1818, and another will not come until 2285.
One may ask why does the moveable feast of Easter occur on different dates in the Gregorian and the Julian calendar?
The reason the date of Easter moves every year is because medieval Christianity sought to align the holiday in time as closely as possible with the Jewish feast of Passover but not to base its calculation on the Jewish calculation for the date of Passover.
Christianity also decided Easter should occur on a Sunday.
The lunar calendar is comprised of 12 months made up of 29 to 30 days each which follow the waxing and waning of the moon.
A Waxing Moon means the moon is getting larger in the sky, moving from the New Moon towards the Full Moon.
The calendar must be adjusted periodically because it is shorter than the amount of time it takes the earth to revolve around the sun.
The adjustment is made by adding an additional month, and if not annexed then the relationship between the months and the seasons would be broken as the lunar year with the solar year drifting further apart.
It is distressing to note the many recent demands in the media for increased access to State abortion services as part of the forthcoming review of the Health (Regulation of Termination of Pregnancy) Act 2018.
An example is Doris Murphy’s letter, People’s Letter Page, 17th March last and her comments on Life and Dignity.
Surely the one thing shared by the two sides in this thorny debate is a desire for fewer terminations?
That requires focus on preventing unwanted pregnancies and on offering compassionate practical alternatives when they occur.
There are vociferous calls to dispense with the requirement in our legislation for a 3-day waiting period and a second medical appointment when a woman is considering an abortion. (Current Covid-19 provisions already permit early medical abortions by remote consultation, an emergency measure supposed to apply only during the pandemic).
But surely when the life of one of the two patients concerned is actually on the line, three days to think things over and a second doctor’s visit in person is the very least a caring society can offer?
I call on Health Minister Stephen Donnelly not only to maintain but in fairness to extend this already all too short cooling-off period in our State legislation to allow for positive life-affirming alternatives to be considered before a serious and irreversible decision is made.
Our world is home to many species not just humans.
However the sad truth is that human beings for the most part dictate how non- humans live.
Domesticated animals that provide companionship are sometimes treated with love and kindness as they fit the criteria of friend, assistant and help to those who are disadvantaged.
Others in this group are used as beasts of burdens, guard dogs, and their skins are used brutally as clothing.
Sadly as people feel they have the right to gamble, dogs and horses are used as racing machines to be run on tracks, confined and run to order as is seen fit.
These lives are worth very little as they risk death and misery from drugs, severe training and track collision every time they are made run. Making dogs and horses race is pure exploitation.
Animals whose docile nature as in ruminants suffer most due to their flesh tasting edible. Farmers breed these gentle beings and despite these animals suffering a horrendous death.
They infer they love their animals.
However they forget the confinement, live exporting and these mothers sorrow whose young gets taken away to an unnatural and painful life in the farming Industry from birth to brutal death.
Every mother wants to keep and protect her children and not have them taken away just after birth or at a few months old.
Crustations and fish suffocate without water, many shelled fish are boiled alive, a death like many other beings beyond comprehension.
Do humans ever really consider the horrendous life inflicted on every other species unnecessarily?
The question is not- can they reason?
But can they suffer.
Empathy is in short supply.
Man is indeed the cruellest animal!
I have read with interest articles relating to anti-social behaviour and disrespect for some of our landmark pieces of public art.
In particular the Luke Kelly pieces of recent times and the manner in which they have been received by the public.
It is very likely the case that these anti-social activities may have a common trend relating to this behaviour,
It has been stated that proposed public art will in future require to be designed with this anti-social behaviour in mind.
Perhaps if those officials who create public art projects sought firstly the consent of the public in the locations where it is proposed to site this art rather then impose unwanted art and later expect communities to accept this against their will, then we might discover the true cause of this anti-social behaviour in which you speak of.
To my mind and that of a great many more the anti-social behaviour in which you speak of is merely a reaction to imposed public art due to the anti-social behaviour of the city council officials who do not respect the consent of the public.
A typical current example of this is the rejection of the proposal from the people of Finglas north west for a statue of Kevin Barry in Kildonan Park consented to and proposed by this community but rejected by Dublin City Council?
Shame on you all.
I was delighted to hear that the Government has decided not to fund that absolute white elephant project that was to be the white-water rafting facility at George’s Dock.
What Dublin needs is homes not another facility for tourists to benefit from and enjoy.
The shortage of housing is the biggest challenge facing Dublin City Council and they would do well to focus on this rather than nonsense vanity projects.