If for some reason, you have forgotten Mother’s Day as you read this bulletin, I am afraid I cannot help you. Making it through the barrage of television, print and online advertising which has been bombarding us for the past month would make us a recluse hermit to have missed the date.
Having said all of that I did miss Mother’s Day a few times. The reason was my mother was living in the UK and me, and my family, the United States. In the UK they actually celebrate Mother’s Day in March, and of course, after a few years living here, it passed before I noticed.
Needless to say, this took some explanation, but my mother never complained, even though I know she missed me on those dates. Funnily enough, there is a theological reason for the date being different to the US one. The holiday was originally designed so congregants could visit their “mother” church during the Lenten period; hence the March date. It would also be a cause for celebration, to bring flowers and unite ourselves with the family which is our “Mother Church” as well as our actual mothers. Indentured servants would get the day off, so it was a holiday on a Sunday, not usually a day of rest for those servants. This history leaves us much to contemplate on this these themes of mother, church, home, servanthood, holidays and celebration.
However, the thought I leave you with the other days of the years, when our mothers are taken for granted; used to help us, but not rewarded or thanked; and generally considered a source of unconditional love (and resources) but not taken care of; or at least as they should be.
The invisible mother is there in all of our lives, like a bridge connecting so many parts of what we are, and what we do. The Church is a part of this process as well, and in May, our Blessed Mother Mary incites a response to love all three of our mothers.
Perhaps the “invisible” taken for granted mother in our lives can be noticed this Mother’s Day in a different light. One which will last longer than the passing Sunday celebration.
The Hidden Bridge
Disguised in the forest,
Like a creature of God,
The bridge blends into the background of the day,
Hidden from view, not intending to avoid you,
But rather showing its availability.
If we care to stop and gaze.