Greetings to you! How are you doing? I hope that you are well. Every four years we have an additional day that is added to the month of February. This phenomenon is referred to as Leap Year. For folks like my housemate, Fr. Bruno Nwachukwu, February 29th is commonly referred to as their birthday. That means that this Saturday my dear brother priest and friend will officially be turning ten years old. (Legally, he’ll be turning 40 years old.) Please do greet him, pray for him, and wish him well in the coming days!
For Fr. Bruno and others who are born on February 29th there a couple of terms that could describe them: “Leapers” and “Leaplings.” Although it does not appear in the readings for Daily Mass on February 29th I oftentimes think of St. John the Baptist within the womb of St. Elizabeth who “
leaped for joy”
at the Visitation of Mary with Jesus within her womb (Luke 1:44).
To be sure it was a very different kind of “leap” that St. John made than we would normally make in a year ending in 0, 4, 8, 12, or 16. In fact, as far as I’ve been told, the reason that we refer to it as a “leap” year is because the date from one day of a particular year would leap to another in the following year. For example, March 1st of this year is a Sunday. Last year that date was on a Friday. That means that, as a consequence of the Leap Year, March 1st made a “leap” over Saturday and will land instead on Sunday.
Throughout this journey of faith that we are on we will have many moments to “leap for joy” and hopefully “leap” over those temptations of sin that would actually cause us to “trip for sadness.” May the God of Goodness who gifts us each day with life continue to empower us with the Grace of His Son Jesus and the outpouring of the Holy Spirit to one day “leap” out of the grave and land in the halls of Heaven.