On May 9th of 1914, President Woodrow Wilson issued a proclamation, proclaiming the very first Mother’s Day—ushering in a great tradition of celebration, appreciation and angst-ridden gift shopping for people who have no clue what Mom wants.
Why not ask Mom? Because Mom—who can seemingly handle any crisis, solve any problem, answer any question—is of absolutely no help in that regard:
“I don’t need anything.”
“You shouldn’t be spending money on me.”
[Insert your mother’s favorite gift-deflecting response here.]
As a public service, your friends at Aquinas & More, have some gift suggestions they’ll be happy to send you in time for Mother’s Day:
This can come as a surprise to people, but Mass cards aren’t just for wakes and funerals. The living need plenty of prayer and a Mass dedicated to the intentions of a member of the Church Militant is a gift well given.
Nobody has more reasons to spend time in prayer than a mother—whether she’s praying for the welfare of her children or perseverance in dealing with them (paging St Monica). Introducing Mom to a new devotion or a different way of approaching one she’s already fond of is a very thoughtful gesture.
If your mother doesn’t already have a Miraculous Medal, seriously consider giving her one. What better way for her to start her day than by remembering Our Lady, who understands every bit of emotion a mother will experience in the course of a day.
And there are many other faith-based gifts out there, such as books, music, and religious art.
What about that old standby—flowers? Those are nice, but as Mom might say, “They’re so expensive. And they don’t last.” That’s where you can get creative and tell Mom you’re planning to spend absolutely no money on her at all.
Well, almost none. Just get her a nice card and write into it the promise of a spiritual bouquet of rosaries, chaplets and any other prayers you know are dear to her.
We hope that helps. Happy Mother’s Day, everybody!
Thoughts for Mother's Day
Motherhood is a woman's vocation. It is an eternal vocation, and it is also a contemporary vocation… We must do everything in order that children, the family, and society may see in her that dignity that Christ saw.” — Pope John Paul II, General Audience, Jan. 10, 1979.
“I also noted that God had created a paradise, and so my home was called to be a mini-paradise, a place of beauty and peace and harmony. Just as God walked and talked with Adam and Eve, so, too, I was called to be in loving relationship and close communication with my children. As God infused knowledge into Adam and Eve for survival and for stewardship of creation, so, too, I was called to educate my children, to share with them the gift of faith I had received, to teach them the skills and understanding they needed to live in society and make it a better place. I realized that just as God gave Adam and Eve the task of caring for the garden, so, too, I was to train my children to work and delegate responsibility to them in order to build character and to give them a role in the care of our home…What a lofty and exciting vocation we have! What dignity was attached to even the most apparently mundane task! Every action we do for or with our children reflects the divine love God showed at creation.”
THE FOURTH COMMANDMENT
- Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long in the land which the Lord your God gives you.
- He was obedient to them.
- The Lord Jesus himself recalled the force of this “commandment of God.” The Apostle teaches: “Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. ‘Honor your father and mother,' (This is the first commandment with a promise.) ‘that it may be well with you and that you may live long on the earth.”‘
The fourth commandment opens the second table of the Decalogue. It shows us the order of charity. God has willed that, after him, we should honor our parents to whom we owe life and who have handed on to us the knowledge of God. We are obliged to honor and respect all those whom God, for our good, has vested with his authority.
The fourth commandment is addressed expre.ssly to children in their relationship to their father and mother, because this relationship is the most universal. It likewise concerns the ties of kinship between members of the extended family. It requires honor, affection, and gratitude toward elders and ancestors. Finally, it extends to the duties of pupils to teachers, employees to employers, subordinates to leaders, citizens to their country, and to those who administer or govern it.
– from the Catechism of the Catholic Church 2197, 2199
A prayer to the patroness of Mothers –
you perseveringly pursued your wayward son
not with wild threats
but with prayerful cries to heaven.
Intercede for all mothers in our day
so that they may learn to draw their children to God.
Teach them how to remain close to their children,
even the prodigal sons and daughters
who have sadly gone astray.