Sunday 27th March marks Mother’s Day for 2022. As well as in the UK, countries all over the world have their own equivalent celebration throughout the year.
These days the celebration has become synonymous with honouring our mothers or giving them a special treat: gifts, chocolates, a fancy meal etc. However the origins of Mother’s Day are likely to be Mothering Sunday which is more closely tied to the church.
On Mothering Sunday, Christians would have historically visited the church where they received their baptism. The ‘Mother’ in Mothering Sunday refers just as much to the church, Mary (the Mother of Jesus) and Mother Nature as it does to our paternal mothers. It was also seen as a day of respite from fasting, falling halfway through the celebration of Lent. In later times it became a day when domestic servants were given a day off to visit their mother church, usually accompanied by their own mothers.
The making and giving of cakes and buns on Mother’s Day, especially Simnel Cake, is a reflection on the day’s association with the story of the Feeding of the Five Thousand. In Bristol and other parts of the world, ‘mothering buns’ remain a speciality for Mothering Sunday. They are plain buns, iced and sprinkled with hundreds and thousands, normally eaten for breakfast on the day.
Violet flowers are also strongly associated with Mother’s Day, the origins for this are thought to have come from an old proverb that says ‘He who goes a-mothering finds violets in the lane.’
Above all, it’s a time to honour the many mothers around the world so that we can show our appreciation for the special place they have in our lives.
Happy Mother’s Day!