Anna Jarvis was so affected by the loss of her mother in 1905 that she campaigned to begin observing Mother’s Day in 1908, according to National Geographic. Finally in 1914, the second Sunday in May was recognized officially as Mother’s Day in the United States by President Woodrow Wilson. Around the world, other countries observe their own version of the day to celebrate mothers and their tireless efforts. Regardless of their holidays’ beginnings, many countries recognizes the impact mothers have had on their culture, children and families.
Mother’s Day Worldwide – How We Celebrate
Mothers in the United States are treated like royalty by their children and husbands on Mother’s Day. Schools often help children create cards and art projects to give to their mothers. Churches and schools organize plays and concerts to entertain mothers. Men send cards and floral arrangements from flower delivery services to their mothers and wives. They even may offer to watch the children for the day while moms to rest or go out and enjoy herself.
This holiday has only been celebrated in India for about 10 years. Following the U.S. lead, it happens on the second Sunday of May and is focused on giving thanks to mothers for their work every day with the family.
In small villages, celebrations focus on music and dance with a mother at the center of attention. The larger metropolitan areas, such as Delhi, take a more commercial approach with women’s clothing shops, restaurants and other retail businesses advertising specials for mothers.
Ireland and the United Kingdom
The United Kingdom and Ireland share a Mother’s Day holiday on the fourth Sunday of Lent, normally sometime in March. In the United Kingdom, the day is referred to as Mothering Day. It began as a day to attend the “Mother Church” where the Virgin Mary was honored. After World War II, the holiday became more of a day to honor mothers in the family. Fresh flowers from local growers are a favorite gift as well as handmade sweets.
A traditional sweet gift is the Mothering or Simnel Cake, notes WHSV-TV. This is a fruit cake frosted with two layers of almond paste, one in the middle and one on top.
May 27 is the official Mother’s Day in Bolivia, and it celebrates the bravery of mothers. Fighting to gain independence from Spain in the 19th century, notes Mental Floss, a group of women took a stand on May 27. Having seen their husbands and sons die in battle, these women faced the Spanish Army head-on themselves. Because of their selfless bravery, the day was officially recognized as Mother’s Day in 1920 to honor those and all women who support their families.
Flowers and baked goods are the theme with families gathering to celebrate mothers throughout Bolivia. People send thank-you notes to all of the women in their lives to honor those who fought for independence.
The last day of April or May is set aside to honor mothers in Nepal, both living and deceased, according to We All Nepali. The Mother Pilgrimage is a march to the Mata Tirtha ponds. Located near Kathmandu, the Mata Tirtha village also holds a large carnival with food and dancing. Children honor their mothers with handmade sweets and gifts, often of favorite clothing. Celebrations are done in this festival environment rather than in the individual family’s homes.
About the Author: Maria Schroeder is a mother, professional, and kitchen wizard.