Thank You, Lord, for Our Mothers

Today we celebrate Mother’s Day, a day set aside to honor our mothers, pray for them, and to thank them for all that they do for us. 

Through the efforts of Anna M. Jarvis (1864-1948), who loved her mother very much, she suggested the national observance of an annual day honoring all mothers. Her idea gained popularity, and Mother’s Day was observed in a number of large cities in the United States. On May 9, 1914, by an act of Congress, President Woodrow Wilson proclaimed the second Sunday in May as Mother’s Day. He established the day as a time for “public expression of our love and reverence for the mothers of our country.”

On Mother’s Day we gratefully acknowledge the fact that none of us is able to return, in the same measure, all the love that our mothers have given us. Their influence on their children is so great that it affects the children throughout their entire lives. Our mothers not only gave us birth but nursed us, nurtured us, raised us in their religious beliefs and practices, taught us good manners and ideal behavior, disciplined us when needed, and made us productive members of Church and society.

Today it is proper for us to express our love and gratitude to our mothers by our presence, gifts, and prayers on Mother’s Day. During the Eucharistic Liturgy on this day we remember all of our mothers, whether they are living or have gone on to their eternal reward. The word “mom” is synonymous with sacrificial, agape love in its purest form, as commanded by Jesus, “Love one another as I have loved you.” Therefore, let us lavish our love on our mothers and express our gratitude for them in the form of prayers offered for them to God, and in verbally saying, “Thanks, Mom, for all you do!”

Also, keep in mind as we honor our earthly mothers, that we have another mother who is an important part of our life and journey of faith, that being our Heavenly Mother, the Mother of Jesus. The Church holds up Mary as the supreme model for all mothers. Let us ask Mary to watch over and pray for our earthly mothers as they continue to show us what sacrificial, unconditional love truly is.

I share with you this prayer for mothers: Thank you, dear Lord, for our mothers: who were brave enough to give us birth, who loved us through many growing-up years, who taught us about God and love and being good, who often got no thanks, whose ears could hear the slightest cry, whose eyes didn’t miss much either, whose hands held and bathed and picked up, whose hearts were often broken, who always forgave and forgot, who encouraged us when things went badly, who always had time to listen to us, who worked hard to make things go, who made the world so much better, who deserve our love on Mother’s Day and every day even for eternity. Amen. 

- Fr. Dennis, May 9, 2021