Mother’s Day Around the World

Today is Mother’s Day in the United States, as well as many other countries, including Australia, India, Tanzania, Puerto Rico, Zambia, Uruguay, and more! Since this US holiday was adapted by other cultures, the date was changed to conform to existing celebrations honoring motherhood. A few examples are Mothering Sunday in the UK or the Orthodox celebration of the presentation of Jesus to the temple in Greece. In some countries, the majority religion influenced the date and festivities of mother’s day – the Virgin May in Catholic countries or in Islamic countries, the birthday of the Prophet Muhammad’s daughter. Some countries even connected Mother’s Day to historical dates. In Bolivia, Mother’s Day is celebrated on the anniversary of a battle in which women participated. According to online sources, these are how some countries celebrate Mother’s Day.

Bolivia
Mother’s Day (Día de la Madre) in Bolivia is on May 27. This is due to a battle that took place on May 27, 1812. Around this time, many regions of South America were fighting for their independence from Spain, and Bolivia was no exception. When husbands, brothers, and fathers were dying in a battle outside of Cochabamba, Bolivia, women stood up in defense of the region. Besides Christmas, Mother’s Day is one of the most celebrated holidays in Bolivia. Most likely relating to Catholicism, mothers are virtually revered there. Bolivians are very into special occasions and “fiestas” and this is no exception. Not unlike the US, Mother’s Day is the biggest sales day of the year for flower shops and bakeries.

Costa Rica
Mother’s Day is a national holiday in Costa Rica celebrated on August 15. It coincides with the Catholic feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Costa Rica’s official religion is also Catholicism and along with the religious significance, this day is a traditional celebration when mothers are showered with gifts, flowers and goodies. Costa Rican society revolves around tradition and family ties and the role of the mother is evident in nearly every household.

Congo
Congo is considered by many to be one of the most dangerous places in the world for women (read the top Ten Reasons why). In Congo, there is no Mother’s Day or Father’s Day, but they do celebrate Parents’ Day on August 1st. Every year, children honor their parents through handcrafted gifts, songs, and special events.

Mother’s Day is celebrated in most countries around the world. Make sure you wish all the mothers you know a Happy Mother’s Day and honor them not only today, but all throughout the year! The Bible not only encourages us to do this, but commands it of us!

  • “Hear, my son, your father’s instruction, and forsake not your mother’s teaching” (Proverbs 1:8).
  • “’Honor your father and mother’ (this is the first commandment with a promise)” (Ephesians 6:2).

Happy Mother’s Day!

Rachel

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