In Celebration of Mothers
Like your wife’s birthday and ‘the anniversary’, Mother’s Day is one of those dates that for a truly peaceful life is best not forgotten. So even though it is a busy time for us at Knockderry House with many families taking their mums out for a lovely lunch to say thank you, we all make sure that we have the flowers organised well in advance. But what is the history behind the tradition?
Many see it as a recent rather commercialised festival imported from the United States, where the tradition to celebrate Mother’s Day has become the most popular day of the year to dine whilst telephone companies record their highest traffic.
However, it is a tradition that can be traced back to the ancient Greeks and Romans who celebrated with a Spring festival dedicated to Cybele, a mother goddess, presumably including a trip to the Coliseum to watch a few guys who’d forgotten their anniversary, Valentine’s Day, the birthday and Mother’s Day (The Grand Slam) being thrown to the lions or in later days being dragged round IKEA behind a chariot – TWICE!
Even early Christians, the ones who remembered, celebrated a Mother’s Day of sorts during Lent in honour of the Virgin Mary; eventually, the holiday was expanded to include all mothers. Some however, believe that Mother’s Day was so named as people returned to their home or “mother” church at least once a year. The same opportunities for holidays did not exist as they do now, but like today, children often worked away from home so this became a time for family reunions.
It was therefore, the reference to the “Mother” church which led to the term ‘Mothering Sunday’ which in turn led to the tradition of children, visiting their mother and family with gifts and a special fruit cake or fruit-filled pastry called a simnel.
These days, Mother’s Day is celebrated all over the world and although for many the church connection has been lost, it is still a special day on which to say thanks to our mums and the chance to express both love and thanks for all that they have given us. As long as you remember of course……otherwise it’s off to the Coliseum or even worse…..