A ‘bomb cyclone’ is coming

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I am familiar with the words “bomb” and “cyclone,” but I have never seen them together before today. CNN explains: “A bomb cyclone happens when a cyclone, which is a low-pressure rotating storm system, experiences a dramatic drop in atmospheric pressure over a short period of time.”

This process is also known as “bombogenesis.” Bomb cyclones draw colder air from the North, which blasts areas in the northern hemisphere with icy temperatures.

Millions of Americans are in peril not only of a bomb cyclone but also of “thundersnow,” which is thunder and lightning during a snowstorm. This phenomenon “combines the hazards of a thunderstorm with the decreased visibility and ground accumulation of a snowstorm.”

“Hoarfrost” is the heavy frost that lines plants, trees, and other things when the air is below freezing and the atmosphere is moist. And a “polar vortex” is an area of low pressure circling the North and South Poles. The vortex around the North Pole is strengthening as we speak, blowing more Arctic air into our atmosphere.

The result of all this is Winter Storm Grayson, which is predicted to bring as much as twenty-four inches of snow to Maine and New Hampshire. Blizzard conditions are expected in several other New England states. Philadelphia is under a “snow emergency” this morning; New York City public schools are closed for the day.

Much of the coastal South is within Grayson’s path as well. Georgia and the eastern portion of the Carolinas could see six inches of snow. The northern parts of Florida will also receive an “icy mix.”

Damaging wind gusts, ice, and blizzard conditions will make travel in much of New England and the Atlantic Coast nearly impossible. Power outages have spread to some 77,000 homes as of today and can be life-threatening in such frigid temperatures. Flooding is expected along the Massachusetts coast.

What spiritual principles are relevant to this historic weather event?

Two lessons from the storm

Henri Nouwen was one of…

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