Mother’s Day or Mother Church?

It’s easy to confuse Mothering Sunday with Mother’s Day. They seem to be the same if we don’t pay too much attention. But they are very different.

Mother’s Day is a recent invention. Mothering Sunday goes back many centuries. Mothering Sunday is connected with the practice of returning to one’s home parish during Lent in order to make one’s “Easter Duties”. It is about recognising our  “mother parish”, the place we were baptised and nourished in the Christian life. Today people are so mobile that the idea of returning to a mother parish no longer makes the same sense. But Mothering Sunday reminds us of the household of faith to which we belong.

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