Bush Telegraph - 2021-05-03


A mother’s day


Rome for Magna Mater, or Great Mother. Each year from March 15, a threeday celebration was held to honour this powerful mother goddess. It was called the Festival of Hilaria and gifts were brought to the temple to please her. With the advent of Christianity, a celebration was held to honour the “Mother Church”. On the fourth Sunday in Lent people brought gifts to the church where they had been baptised. Some countries still continue the English tradition of celebrating Mother's Day on the fourth Sunday in Lent. On that same day in the 1600s another kind of celebration began called “Mothering Sunday”. Many of England's poor children were working as servants for the wealthy, usually living far from their homes. Mothering Sunday was considered an annual day off for these young servants and they were told to go home to be with their mothers. This custom, called “a-mothering”, often included the so-called “mothering cake” as a gift. However, the first English settlers in America didn't find time for such festivities and Mothering Sunday was not continued until 1872. The first suggestion for a Mother's Day in America was made by Julia Ward Howe (lyricist of the The Battle Hymn of the Republic). Her initiative did reinstate an annual Mothers' Day but only in Boston, Massachusetts. The real founder of Mother's Day in America is considered to be Anna Jarvis, who campaigned for the celebration in Philadelphia in 1907. All through her childhood, following the Civil War, Anna had heard her mother's conviction that if families honoured their mothers on a special day, the ongoing hatred would end.


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