Mother’s Day is a festival that celebrates parenting and is celebrated in various ways around the globe. Mother’s Day 2023 will be observed on Sunday, May 14, in the United States.Anna Jarvis established the American version of Mother’s Day in 1908, and it became an official U.S. holiday in 1914. Jarvis would later criticize the holiday’s marketing and spend the rest of her life attempting to get it removed from the schedule. While the times and festivities differ, flowers, notes, and other presents are typically given to mothers on Mother’s Day.
History of Mother’s Day
Mother’s Day can be traced back to the ancient Greeks and Romans, who hosted celebrations in honor of the mother deities Rhea and Cybele, but the clearest contemporary antecedent is the early Christian holiday known as “Mothering Sunday.”
This festival, which used to fall on the fourth Sunday of Lent and was initially seen as a time when the devout would return to their “mother church”—the primary church in the neighborhood of their home—for a special ceremony.
Mothering Sunday evolved into a more profane festival over time, with children presenting their moms with bouquets and other symbols of gratitude. This tradition declined in prominence before blending with American Mother’s Day in the 1930s and 1940s.
Ann Reeves Jarvis and Julia Ward Howe
Mother’s Day as it is observed in the United States dates back to the nineteenth century. Ann Reeves Jarvis of West Virginia helped establish “Mothers’ Day Work Clubs” in the years leading up to the Civil War to educate local women how to correctly care for their children.
These organizations went on to become a uniting force in an area of the nation that was still split by the Civil War. Jarvis arranged “Mothers’ Friendship Day” in 1868, where mothers met with former Union and Confederate troops to encourage unity.
Julia Ward Howe, an activist and feminist, was another forerunner of Mother’s Day. In 1870, Howe issued the “Mother’s Day Proclamation,” a call to action urging women to work together to promote global peace. In 1873, Howe advocated for a “Mother’s Peace Day” to be observed on June 2.
Juliet Calhoun Blakely, an abstinence crusader who initiated a municipal Mother’s Day in Albion, Michigan, in the 1870s, was another early Mother’s Day pioneer. Meanwhile, in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, Mary Towles Sasseen and Frank Hering both labored to establish a Mother’s Day. Hering has been dubbed “the father of Mother’s Day” by some.
Anna Jarvis Turns Mother’s Day Into a National Holiday
Anna Jarvis, Ann Reeves Jarvis’s daughter, was instrumental in establishing the formal Mother’s Day celebration in the 1900s. Following her mother’s passing in 1905, Anna Jarvis created Mother’s Day to recognize the efforts women make for their offspring.
In May 1908, she arranged the first formal Mother’s Day gathering at a Methodist church in Grafton, West Virginia, with funding support from a Philadelphia department store proprietor called John Wanamaker. Thousands of people also attended a Mother’s Day gathering at one of Wanamaker’s retail shops in Philadelphia on the same day.
Following the triumph of her first Mother’s Day, Jarvis—who had lived her entire life single and childless—decided to have her holiday added to the national schedule. She began a huge letter-writing campaign to publications and notable lawmakers, arguing that American holidays were skewed toward masculine accomplishments and encouraging the establishment of a unique day commemorating mothers.
By 1912, many states, municipalities, and religions had made Mother’s Day a yearly holiday, and Jarvis had formed the Mother’s Day International Association to further her cause. Her perseverance paid off in 1914, when President Woodrow Wilson approved legislation designating the second Sunday in May as Mother’s Day.
Jarvis Decries Commercialized Mother’s Day
Anna Jarvis envisioned Mother’s Day as a day of special honor for moms and families. Her interpretation of the day included donning a white carnation as an insignia and visiting one’s mother or going to church. However, once Mother’s Day became a national holiday, flowers, card businesses, and other retailers quickly profited on its success.
While Jarvis originally worked with the flower industry to help elevate the prominence of Mother’s Day, by 1920 she was horrified with how the holiday had been monetized. She publicly condemned the change and encouraged people to refrain from purchasing Mother’s Day bouquets, gifts, and sweets.
Jarvis ultimately launched a public crusade against Mother’s Day profiteers, criticizing confectioners, flowers, and even nonprofits. She also filed numerous cases against organizations that used the term “Mother’s Day,” ultimately spending the majority of her personal fortune on legal costs. By the time she died in 1948, Jarvis had completely abandoned the holiday and was aggressively lobbying the government to have it deleted from the American calender.
Mother’s Day Around the World
While Mother’s Day is observed around the globe, customs differ by nation. Mother’s Day is always observed in Thailand in August, on the birthdate of the present monarch, Sirikit.
Another alternative Mother’s Day festival can be found in Ethiopia, where families assemble each autumn to perform music and feast as part of Antrosht, a multi-day party celebrating mothers.
Mother’s Day is still honored in the United States by giving presents and bouquets to moms and other women, and it has become one of the most important occasions for shopper expenditure. Families also commemorate by offering moms a day off from domestic duties such as preparing.
Mother’s Day has occasionally been used to start political or progressive campaigns. Coretta Scott King, Martin Luther King, Jr.’s wife, used Mother’s Day in 1968 to organize a march in support of impoverished women and children. In the 1970s, women’s organizations used the occasion to emphasize the importance of equitable rights and access to daycare.
What is the importance of a mother?
Mothers perform an important part in the family, which is a strong societal harmony and unification factor. The mother-child bond is critical for children’s good growth. Mothers are also breadwinners for their households, in addition to being caretakers.
What are three facts about Mothers Day?
10 Fun Facts for Mother’s Day
- Mother’s Day is the most popular flower-buying holiday in the United Kingdom.
- Mother’s Day dates back to Ancient Greece. …
- Mothering Sunday is observed on the fourth Sunday of Lent in the United Kingdom and Ireland. …
- Mother’s Day is one of the busiest dining days of the year.
What is the message of Mothers Day?
May your Mother’s Day be full with the same joy that you brought to my youth. On this auspicious day, may all the affection you gave us return to you a hundredfold! I wish you all the affection and prosperity you deserve. I wish you a very joyful Mother’s Day!
Why is Mother’s Day important essay?
It is our responsibility to care for, honor, and adore our moms. Mother’s Day is observed to make our moms feel unique and to gift her with all of our affection. Though it is observed on the second Sunday of May each year, we should observe Mother’s Day every day to make our moms feel unique.