Sunday, May 11, 2008

A day for mothers

In the United States, Mother's Day was loosely inspired by the British day and was imported by social activist Julia Ward Howe after the American Civil War. However, it was intended as a call to unite women against war. In 1870, she wrote the Mother's Day Proclamation as a call for peace and disarmament. Howe failed in her attempt to get formal recognition of a Mother's Day for Peace.
Her idea was influenced by Ann Jarvis, a young Appalachian homemaker who, starting in 1858, had attempted to improve sanitation through what she called Mothers' Work Days. She organized women throughout the Civil War to work for better sanitary conditions for both sides, and in 1868 she began work to reconcile Union and Confederate neighbors.
When Jarvis died in 1905, her daughter, named Anna Jarvis, started the crusade to found a memorial day for women. In 1907, she passed out 500 white carnations at her mother’s church, St. Andrew’s Methodist Episcopal Church in Grafton, West Virginia—one for each mother in the congregation. The first Mother's Day service was celebrated on 10 May 1908, in the same church, where the elder Ann Jarvis had taught Sunday School. Anna chose Sunday to be Mother's Day because she intended the day to be commemorated and treated as a Holy Day. Even though the day has become severely commercialized, it is a beautiful opportunity to let our mothers know how much, how deeply they are appreciated.

My children bought me a big, beautiful planter for the front porch. They know me so well.  And I have a few more pieces of original art for the gallery. 
My love took us out to lunch, joined by Mom and Dad and my brother's family. Three moms in our little group. My sister sent flowers from Boston to surprise Mom. It was a very sweet afternoon.

I hope you enjoyed your day of celebrating mom.

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