I just wanted to take a few moments to wish my Mom, my sisters, and all other mothers out there a Happy Mother’s Day.
Of course, I had to look up when Mother’s Day was back in Canada.. as here in the UK, it was back on March 18th.. Which is apparently the fourth Sunday in Lent.
Oh ok.. wait, but when’s Lent? lol
I never knew until I moved to London that Mother’s Day was celebrated on different days around the world. Reading through Wikipedia about it, I realised it wasn’t just the UK that was on a different day, but the entire world celebrates it at different times.
For instance, in Spain, Portugal and Hungary, Mother’s Day was last Sunday.. whereas in Norway it’s always the second Sunday in February.
Hell, Indonesia and Panama don’t celebrate the day until December, and it’s not even called Mother’s Day! (Panama celebrates the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, for instance..)
Again, according to Wikipedia:
Celebrations of mothers and motherhood occur throughout the world. Many of these trace back to ancient festivals, like the Greek cult to Cybele, the Roman festival of Hilaria, or the Christian Mothering Sunday celebration. However, the modern holiday is an American invention and not directly descended from these celebrations. Despite this, in some countries Mother’s Day has become synonymous with these older traditions.
Julia Ward Howe was the first to proclaim Mother’s Day in 1870. Her Mother’s Day Proclamation was a pacifist reaction to the American Civil War and the Franco-Prussian War. The modern holiday of Mother’s Day was first celebrated in 1908, when Anna Jarvis held a memorial for her mother in America. She then began a campaign to make “Mother’s Day” a recognized holiday in the United States. Although she was successful in 1914, she was already disappointed with its commercialization by the 1920s. Jarvis’ holiday was adopted by other countries and it’s now celebrated all over the world.
Now, as this ‘holiday’ was adopted around the world, the date in each country was changed to fit any already existing celebrations of motherhood, some of them religious celebrations.
In fact looking at the UK and Ireland, originally the fourth Sunday after Lent was called Mothering Sunday, which is ‘a Christian festival celebrated throughout Europe that falls on the 4th Sunday in Lent‘. In the UK and Ireland, it eventually became synonymous with Mother’s Day as celebrated in other countries.
Basically what I found was that most countries, regions and religions already had some kind of celebration surround motherhood before the modern commercialized Mother’s Day was adopted around the world. The day means different things to different countries, and some even have different traditions and different ways of marking the day.
Regardless of the country, customs, or traditions you follow, let’s all remember to be thankful to our mothers, whether they’re near or far, for everything they’ve done for us over our lifetimes.
We couldn’t be who we are without them.