Mothering Sunday, sometimes known as Mother’s Day, is held on the fourth Sunday of Lent. It is exactly three weeks before Easter Sunday. Mother’s Day usually falls in the second half of March or the beginning of April.
Traditionally, people visited the church where they were baptized or went to church as children. So it was a day to visit your ‘mother church’. This meant that families were reunited as adults returned to the towns and villages where they grew up. In time, it became customary for young people who were working as servants in large houses, to be given a holiday on Mothering Sunday. They could use this day to visit their own mother and often took a gift of food or hand-me-down clothing from their employers to her. In turn, this moved towards the modern holiday, when people still visit and take gifts to their mothers and grandmothers.
Today, Mothering Sunday is a celebration of motherhood.
What do people do?
Mother’s Day, or Mothering Sunday, is now a day to honour mothers and other mother figures, such as grandmothers, stepmothers and mother-in-laws. Many people make a special effort to visit their mother. An important part of Mothering Sunday is giving cards and gifts. Common Mother’s Day gifts are cakes, flowers, chocolates, jewellery, or clothes. Some people choose to treat their mother or grandmother to a special meal, beauty treatment or fun outing. People who cannot visit their mother usually send gifts or cards to her.
In the days and weeks before Mothering Sunday, many schools, church Sunday schools and children’s organizations help their pupils to prepare a handmade card or gift for their mother.