Mother’s Day

When is it celebrated?

In the United States, Mother’s Day is celebrated on the second Sunday in May.  It is celebrated on different days throughout the year in other parts of the world.

Who celebrates it?

It is celebrated worldwide.

Where does it originate from?

Ancient Rome and Greece often had celebrations celebrating goddesses that were mothers.  In modern times, Mother’s Day can be traced back to “Mothering Sunday,” an early Christian tradition.  This took place in the UK and different areas of Europe during Lent, and was a time that Christians visited their “mother” church.  By doing this, children were also reunited with their own mothers, as some had spent time away in apprenticeships. The custom eventually evolved to include presenting mothers with flowers and gifts, and the practice spread to other parts of the world.

In the US, Ann Reeves Jarvis created Mother’s Day Work Clubs in the 19th century to help advocate for health conditions for workers and honor the work mothers do.  After she died, her daughter, Anna Jarvis, worked to get the holiday nationally recognized as a day to celebrate mothers.  In 1914, President Wilson named Mother’s Day a holiday. Although not federally recognized, Mother’s Day is celebrated by every state.  By 1920, Anna was disgusted with how commercialized the holiday had become. She started speaking out against it and working to get it taken away.

Symbols/Traditions:

Mothers are honored for Mother’s Day by the following practices:

  • Sending gifts, flowers, or cards to your mother
  • Refraining from having your mother cook or do housework for the day
  • Spending time together or talking on the phone
  • Remembering mothers that have passed

A few countries have their own traditions and history behind how and why Mother’s Day is celebrated, but are still centered on the same idea of honoring your mother.

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