This Sunday, May14th, we celebrate Mother’s Day. This is a special holiday we celebrate each year to honor our mothers and mother figures. As Catholics we have the additional opportunity to honor and pray to the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Mother of Jesus, and our spiritual mother too.
The idea of a day to honor mothers dates to ancient civilizations, but the modern holiday was first celebrated in the early 20th century in the United States. Today, Mother’s Day is a widely recognized holiday that is celebrated by people of all backgrounds and cultures around the world.
On Mother’s Day, many people give gifts, cards, and flowers to their mothers, while others may spend quality time with their loved ones or make special meals or treats. Quality time with our mothers, grandmothers and possibly great grandmothers, too, can include visiting, talking with and listening to their stories, their memories their recollections of us when we were young and also what the world was like when they were young.
Story telling is a powerful resource and tool, to share and to listen too, and is often used in catechetical sessions to share our Catholic Christian faith. There were no cell phones in earlier days, and computers were mainly in research and science labs. Television was likely limited to black and white shows, and children would get excited when they saw that the next show would be in color. To make phone calls, many were on party lines, and when they picked up the phone and someone else was already talking, they would have to wait to make their call. The familiar voice of the operator saying “Number please” would allow people to make their phone call.
The Blessed Virgin Mary is often honored with May Processions where a student or parishioner crowns the statue of Mary. People would place flowers at her feet. The chanting of Marian hymns and the praying of the Rosary often accompanies the May Crowning.
Today we can still honor Mary, if not with a May crowning, we could say the Rosary each day or reflect and meditate on the Mysteries of the Rosary.
The Mysteries of the Rosary from Catholic Online Learning Resources
Joyful Mystery of the Rosary Monday & Saturday
The Annunciation of the Lord to Mary: Mary is chosen to be the mother of Jesus.
The Visitation of Mary to Elizabeth: Elizabeth recognizes Mary as the mother of our Lord.
The Nativity of our Lord Jesus Christ: Jesus is born and laid in a manger.
The Presentation of our Lord: Jesus is presented in the Temple of Jerusalem.
Finding Jesus in the Temple at age 12: Jesus is found discussing God’s laws in the temple.
Sorrowful Mystery of the Rosary Tuesday & Friday
The Agony of Jesus in the Garden: Jesus prays when confronted with the sins of the world.
The Scourging at the Pillar: Jesus is whipped before His execution.
Jesus is Crowned with Thorns: Jesus is mocked with a painful crown of thorns.
Jesus Carried the Cross: Jesus carries the weight of our sins to His crucifixion.
The Crucifixion of our Lord: Jesus Christ dies to save all mankind.
Glorious Mystery of the Rosary Wednesday & Sunday
The Resurrection of Jesus Christ: Jesus rises triumphant over death.
The Ascension of Jesus to Heaven: As Jesus ascends, He gives us a special task.
The Descent of the Holy Ghost: At Pentecost the Church is born.
The Assumption of Mary into Heaven: The Virgin Mary is gloriously assumed into heaven.
Mary is Crowned as Queen of Heaven and Earth: Mary is honored above all creatures.
Luminous Mystery of the Rosary Thursday
The Baptism in the Jordan: God proclaims Jesus is His Son.
The Wedding at Cana: Jesus performs a surprising miracle at a wedding.
The Proclamation of the Kingdom: Jesus calls us to do something important.
The Transfiguration: Jesus is gloriously transformed.
The Institution of the Eucharist: Jesus shares His Body and Blood for our salvation.
Consider sharing the stories of these mysteries with your children and/or grandchildren or praying and meditating on them each day.
Also take time to share stories of your childhood, or even of your mother or grandmothers, so your family heritage can remain alive and vibrant. If your Mother’s Day celebration includes a dinner or a bar-b-que, consider bringing some of the food to a homeless shelter, or to the unhoused sleeping in tents or under cardboard boxes or plastic tarps.
Remembering the past, sharing the stories, celebrating the present, and making a difference for the future, all nourished by Marian prayer will create a Mother’s Day to be remembered and cherished.