January 20th has always been a special date for me. My first brother was born on January 20th, as was my maternal grandmother and one of my favorite cousins. But this year it will have an added specialness. There will be another Supermoon Eclipse. Yes, on January 20-21, there will be the first full moon of 2019, the first lunar eclipse of 2019 and the first supermoon of 2019. Making it even more special is the fact that this will be the last total lunar eclipse until May 26, 2021.
Here are the eclipse times for the US and Canada.
I’ve heard some TV personalities referring to this lunar eclipse as a Blood Moon. However, I don’t believe they are entirely correct in the use of the term. Most moons low in the sky appear reddish because the dispersed air between us on Earth and the moon makes the moon look reddish.
There is, however, an astronomical Blood Moon, simultaneously called the Hunter’s Moon, that occurs typically in October. The “Hunter’s Moon is the full moon immediately following the Harvest Moon, which is the full moon occurring most closely to the autumnal equinox.” (EarthSky)
But there is also a biblical prophecy called Blood Moon which is four eclipsed full moons (with a reddish appearance) in a row. This series of lunar eclipses is called a lunar tetrad. A lunar tetrad “describes four successive total lunar eclipses, with no partial lunar eclipses in between, each of which is separated from the other by six lunar months (six full moons).” (EarthSky) This phenomenon to Christians suggests the fulfillment of the end times as described in Joel 2:31. However, the last Blood Moon eclipse occurred in 2014-15 and we’re still here. The next will likely be in 2032-2033.
So don’t forget to go outside this weekend to watch the Supermoon eclipse.
For more information about the supermoon on January 20-21, go to EarthSky’s The supermoon eclipse of January 20-21.
For more information about eclipse activity this year, go to EarthSky’s Dates of solar and lunar eclipses in 2019.