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Mother’s Day: A Very Special Day for Special People

Vintage photo of a mother reading a book with her daughter.

Whether you call yours mom, mother, momma or mommy, there is something very special about her, and Mother’s Day is how we show our love for the important women in our lives.

The origins of celebrating mothers date back to the ancient Greeks and Romans who honored the mother goddesses, Rhea and Cybele, respectively.

The United Kingdom brought ‘Mothering Sunday’ to life in the 1600’s on the fourth Sunday of Lent.  A prayer service was held for the Virgin Mary, then children were encouraged to honor their own mothers with flowers and gifts.

In 1872, Julia Ward Howe, who wrote “The Battle Hymn of the Republic,” suggested that June 2 be observed for Mother’s Day for Peace.  That movement died out and was later replaced by Anna Jarvis’ Mother’s Day.

Anna Jarvis worked very hard to create the holiday, because she wanted to find some way to honor her mother who died in 1905.  By 1912 many states, towns, and churches had adopted Mother’s Day as an annual holiday because of Anna Jarvis’ dedication.

Mother’s Day became a national holiday in 1914 when President Woodrow Wilson signed a proclamation making it official.  This wonderful holiday is celebrated the second Sunday in May.

Mother’s Day is celebrated around the world at different times of the year but always with the same thought in mind - that moms are special.  Mexico always celebrates on May 10, France celebrates on the last Sunday in May and Serbian people honor their moms on the second Sunday before Christmas.  Norway has its day set for the second Sunday in February, and Thailand celebrates in August on the birthday of their current queen, and Ethiopia’s is in the fall and lasts several days.  That is just a sampling of the variety of the countries that celebrate Mother’s Day and honor moms all over the world.

Mother’s Day continues to be celebrated with gifts, cards, flowers and many phone calls to our moms, grandmas, step-moms, and the other important women in our lives.

Happy Mother’s Day!