Mother’s Day is quickly approaching here in the United States and it got me thinking. I have a wonderful relationship with my own mother, but what if you don’t? Could we possibly turn to the Gods and honor Them for a Mother’s Day celebration? Maybe the Gods you work with embody ideals that are commonly attributed to moms around the world.
I was thinking about that this morning while cleaning up my kitchen and even then, where did Mother’s Day come from?
The History of Mother’s Day in the United States
Though the ancient peoples would often hold festivals celebrating Mother goddesses, the clearest modern precedent for what we know as Mother’s Day is linked to an early Christian festival known as Mothering Sunday.
Once a major tradition in the United Kingdom and parts of Europe, this celebration fell on the fourth Sunday in Lent and was originally seen as a time when the faithful would return to their “mother church”—the main church in the vicinity of their home—for a special service. (Source)
Mother’s Day was created by Ann Reeves Jarvis in 1908 and became an official U.S. holiday in 1914. It originally started as a way for Ann to gather local women for Mothers’ Day Work Clubs to teach them how to care for their children. Over the years, these days became a unifying force in a country still divided over a civil war.
These clubs later became a unifying force in a region of the country still divided over the Civil War. In 1868 Jarvis organized “Mothers’ Friendship Day,” at which mothers gathered with former Union and Confederate soldiers to promote reconciliation. (Source)
Julia Ward Howe, an abolitionist, also had a part to play in our modern Mother’s Day traditions. She wrote something called Mother’s Day Proclamation (originally called the Appeal to Womanhood Throughout the World) , a call to action for all moms everywhere to promote world peace.
Again, in the sight of the Christian world, have the skill and power of two great nations exhausted themselves in mutual murder. Again have the sacred questions of international justice been committed to the fatal mediation of military weapons. In this day of progress, in this century of light, the ambition of rulers has been allowed to barter the dear interests of domestic life for the bloody exchanges of the battle field. Thus men have done. Thus men will do. But women need no longer be made a party to proceedings which fill the globe with grief and horror. Despite the assumptions of physical force, the mother has a sacred and commanding word to say to the sons who owe their life to her suffering. That word should now be heard, and answered to as never before.
Arise, then, Christian women of this day ! Arise, all women who have hearts, Whether your baptism be that of water or of tears ! Say firmly : We will not have great questions decided by irrelevant agencies. Our husbands shall not come to us, reeking with carnage, for caresses and applause. Our sons shall not be taken from us to unlearn all that we have been able to teach them of charity, mercy and patience. We, women of one country, will be too tender of those of another country, to allow our sons to be trained to injure theirs. From the bosom of the devastated earth a voice goes up with our own. It says: Disarm, disarm! The sword of murder is not the balance of justice. Blood does not wipe out dishonor, nor violence vindicate possession. As men have often forsaken the plough and the anvil at the summons of war, let women now leave all that may be left of home for a great and earnest day of council.
Let them meet first, as women, to bewail and commemorate the dead. Let them then solemnly take council with each other as to the means whereby the great human family can live in peace, man as the brother of man, each bearing after his own kind the sacred impress, not of Caesar, but of God.
In the name of womanhood and of humanity, I earnestly ask that a general congress of women, without limit of nationality, may be appointed and held at some place deemed most convenient, and at the earliest period consistent with its objects, to promote the alliance of the different nationalities, the amicable settlement of international questions, the great and general interests of peace.
— Julia Ward Howe (Source)
But what does all this have to do with paganism and witchcraft? Well, I’ll tell you!
If you don’t have a good relationship with your own mother, consider giving passing offerings to Mother Goddesses in your tradition. If you don’t work with deities specifically, do something extra nice for Mother Earth.
Common Mother Goddesses
Mother’s Day Magick
Bless the flowers you give to your mother today with hopes of health, prosperity, and wellness. Choose the colors with intention, picking a correspondence that works for what you want.
For example, you can give yellow flowers to promote joy and happiness.
Flowers so sweet on this Mother’s Day
Bring happiness and joy to my mother today.
Make a Magickal Breakfast
If you can make your mother breakfast (or any other meal, for that matter), imbue it with a bit of kitchen witchery and green magick! Use herbs and spices in your dishes that show your love and affection. I know I would absolutely adore if my daughter made me breakfast in bed, but we have a rule about eating in our rooms
Do you have a gift to give your mother? Charge it for protection and prosperity! Don’t forget that many of us here in the coven have our own shops where we create magickal (and mundane) trinkets and treasures!
Consider creating something special and witchy for your mom this Mother’s Day! Like the Sunshine Oil I posted about or the Anointing Oil for Love, Healing, and Protection that was posted by @SilverBear!
Whatever you choose to do (or not do) this coming Mother’s Day, I hope you have a wonderful one.