Feeling Unsure about Mother’s Day?
For years I have felt unsure about how best to observe Mother’s Day, especially in church. At home with my mom and with the mother of my children it hasn’t been too complicated, at least not yet. It’s in church on Sunday (because of course Mother’s Day is always on a Sunday) that I feel the most unsure about how to honour the mothers in our lives while also acknowledging how difficult Mother’s Day can be for some.
So many of us have been so blessed by the women who gave us life and gave so much of themselves to nurture and care for us, and we are right to honour and celebrate all of them, including those who, whether they were our mothers or not, have in various ways provided us with all the love and care and challenge that go with mothering at its best. But I’ve been stopped short by what I’ve heard from those who feel alienated by Mother’s Day, those for whom mothering and motherhood have been more a source of pain than they have been a source of joy and so do not find Mother’s Day an easy day to celebrate.
I’m very grateful to Barb Langis who this past week shared with me a very helpful letter. It’s an open letter to pastors about Mother’s Day from a “non-mom”. You can read the letter yourself here http://timewarpwife.com/open-letter-pastors-non-mom-speaks-mothers-day/. It is well worth reading.
The author, Amy Young, very clearly and very graciously explains why it is that Mother’s Day can be so difficult for so many people, including for herself. But that’s not all she offers in this letter. She includes a description of what she calls the “continuum of mothering.” In it she names and, it feels to me, prays for the whole
range of experiences people have around mothering, both beautiful experiences and painful experiences.
I hope you have a chance to read Amy Young’s “Open letter to pastors (A non-mom speaks about Mother’s Day)” and that it might be a source of encouragement to you whatever your experience of mothering might be.
And I hope you’re able to join us on Sunday as we try to faithfully and lovingly celebrate Mother’s Day, and as we pray for the whole range of experiences that come with the beautiful though often painful gift of mothering.
Rev. David Turner +