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Mother's Day

When is Mother’s Day?

Britain differs from most of the rest of the world by celebrating Mother’s Day on the fourth Sunday of Lent, three weeks before Easter Sunday. In 2024 Mother’s Day will be on Sunday 10th March

In the USA and many other countries Mother’s Day is on the second Sunday in May, while in some East European countries it is combined with International Women’s Day on 8th March. In the Arab world Mother’s Day frequently coincides with the Spring Equinox on 21st March. Elsewhere it is celebrated on many different dates.

Mother's Day

What is Mother’s Day?

Mother’s Day, (also known as Mothering Sunday) is a time of special appreciation for mothers and all mother-figures including step-mothers, foster mothers and grandmothers. On this day people visit their mother, bringing a card or gift and sometimes taking her out for lunch or tea. Those who can’t visit might send cards or flowers. Children make cards and gifts, often helped by their schools or playgroup. Another common tradition is to treat their mother to breakfast in bed, marking the start of a relaxing day free of chores.

Of course Mother’s Day is a bonanza for businesses: florists, greetings card manufacturers, chocolatiers, restaurants and pubs all benefit from extra spending at this time.

Mother's Day Traditions

Why is Mother’s Day on the fourth Sunday in Lent?

In Victorian Britain the fourth Sunday in Lent was a day’s holiday for young people working as servants in large houses. The day was known as Mothering Sunday and the daughters and sons would go home to visit their mothers, often taking a bunch of flowers picked from the wayside or a gift of food or clothing from their employers.

When was Mother’s Day first celebrated?

The celebration originated in Britain in the sixteenth century when people would return once a year during Lent to the place they were born or where they grew up, in order to attend a service at their ‘mother church’. The service was in praise of the coming-together of families. Out of this grew the tradition of the Mothering Sunday holiday when young people returned home to visit their mothers.

In many other countries, Mother’s Day is a twentieth century invention. It was first celebrated in America in 1907 when Anna Jarvis held a small event in memory of her mother Ann Jarvis, who helped to reduce disease and infant mortality in her local area by organising work clubs to improve health and cleanliness. This event was the first step in Anna’s campaign to instigate a day to celebrate every mother.

Interesting Facts about Mother’s Day

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