Is...(fill in the blank-Rosh Hashana/Chanukah/Passover) early or late this year? You never hear, wow (fill in the blank) is on time! The holidays are either too early or too late. Why do they fluctuate? Is it calendric madness?? Well...it is and it isn't. There is a simple explanation...Adar. Adar is all about keeping our lunar Jewish calendar in sync with our solar civil calendar.
We add an additional month 7 times in a 19 year cycle--approximately once every e years to realign our Jewish calendar with the secular calendar. So, one year the holidays are too early and the next year the holidays are too late, and the following year they are just early or late--not too.This additional month is referred to as Adar 1 and is placed before the real month of Adar--known as Adar 2 during the leap year. This , of course, is not confusing if you read from right to left.
This year is a leap year so there is an Adar 1 and Adar 2. Just like February 29, if you are born durin ghte month of Adar 1, you will only celebrate your birthday every 3 years...staying younger longer.
By the way....Passover is late this year. The first seder is Friday evening, April 19.