anna jarvis, cards, celebration, chocolates, church, cybele, family, festivals, flowers, gift, greece, history, letter-writing campaign, lions pride, memorial day, mother goddesses, mothering sunday, mothers day, online shopping, present, rhea, visit, woodrow wilson
Think back to your last online shopping experience. Do you happen to recall any ads that you saw? We obviously can’t know for sure, but more than likely you saw something related to flowers, chocolates or other gifts, which can only mean Mother’s Day is upon us. To help commemorate the upcoming holiday, we thought we’d go through a quick history lesson. Without further ado, let’s get started!
The first celebrations of mothers go back to ancient Greece. Festivals were held to honor the mother goddesses known as Rhea and Cybele. The most modern version of the holiday was known as “Mothering Sunday,” in which adult children were encouraged to attend mass at their hometown church, then spend the day with mom. The custom eventually faded in popularity until merging with today’s holiday.
The celebration that we know today was created by Anna Jarvis. Her mother, Ann Jarvis, cared for wounded soldiers during the Civil War and became a community activist. As a child, Anna heard her mother say a prayer, hoping that one day there would be a Memorial Day for mothers to honor their good deeds. After Ann passed, Anna became making plans for the official holiday.
On the second anniversary of her mother’s death in 1905, Anna held a special church service in her honor. After a successful event, she took part in a fierce letter-writing campaign, in which she worked to persuade newspapers and politicians to add the holiday to the national calendar. By 1912, many states, towns and churches were already observing Mother’s Day as an annual holiday. Finally, in 1914, Woodrow Wilson officially recognized the second Sunday of May as Mother’s Day.
Today, children all over the world shower their mothers with gifts, but the original idea was to simply spend the day together. Anna hoped that families would be able to attend church in the morning and visit in the afternoon. Gifts didn’t come until later on, and much to her dismay.
This Sunday, rather spending a lot of time and energy on finding the perfect flower arrangement or extravagant box of chocolates for mom, consider giving her a more thoughtful gift, the gift of quality time. Ask her how she would like to spend the day and shower her with attention. We can guarantee that a day together will be the ultimate gift.
Happy Mother’s Day from Lions Pride!