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How our people experienced Mother's Day this year

Posted May 15, 2019

As Salvationists, we hope to create a feeling of connection and community every time we meet. We asked women to relay honestly how they experienced Mother's Day this year. We should listen to their responses.

The following are real women's experiences (some are edited for brevity), collected from our Women's Ministries Facebook community. We honour and thank every woman who wrote to us, and bless you. To all those whose experiences were too raw to share, with sit with you in solidarity. To all those who celebrate, we cheer you on.


 

Spent with my 75 year old mother and my daughter. After 11 rounds of IVF she is finally a mother. - Alison

 

My day was bittersweet. I awoke to a lovely message from one of daughters who lives many miles away. I also remembered my mom. She passed eighteen months ago. This past Thursday was her birthday. And of course there were dishes to be washed. - Cynthia

 

Mother's Day is always difficult for me as I did not have a good relationship with my mother until she was in her 80s. However, I am SO grateful that the Lord blessed me with three beautiful daughters. - Marie

 

Spent it with family and friends and got proposed to! - Amy

 

In bed with a box of aloe vera tissues, throaties and vicks. My wonderful husband trailed round Spotlight with me and as my gift bought me loads of material so our Bible study can start making quilts for homeless people next week. - Sarah

 

Shoutout to my guy who was always one of several guys tasked with delivering a gift to each mother, during the service. He took one at a time, looked each recipient in the eye, wished them a happy day and kissed their cheek if he knew them well enough. Such honouring. I was so proud to be his wife. - Angel

 

Normally I avoid going to church on Mother’s Day but this year I was preaching. As a woman who has longed for children and likely will never have them, and as a daughter who has been rejected by an abusive mother - it is a day of grief and loss not a day of celebration. And my role as preacher yesterday didn’t protect my heart from aching during the Mother’s Day segment. - Belinda

 

I ended up in hospital but had beautiful drawings and cards from Mr. 6, dinner and foot massage from hubby. So a great affordable day. - Chanelle

 

For me, Mother's Day was about honouring the mother of my grandchildren in Australia. Love and respect that young lady. Every time I hear from my kids is Mothers Day to me! - Brigitte

 

Personally, I don't like to celebrate Mother’s or Father's day at church. There's many who celebrate but also many whom we make cry and sad. I saw many children and adults crying in church… Girls from The Salvation Army home also attend our Corps who are orphans or semi-orphaned, I can see their pain. So for me it's painful. - Nazia

 

The kids woke me up with a breakfast, and a special card. I also got a gift from one of my spiritual daughters with a very touching message, and a profound sermon by Cadet Kayisi. - Strelitzia

 

We had a great Mothers' Day service led of course by women. Four generations of a family read from the Bible and we had the usual cards and flowers, and even the dedication of a beautiful little girl. A woman testified of her childhood in Africa where she was rejected by her mother and her father who had many wives. She came to New Zealand and found several 'mothers' who she named - women officers who care for her, bought her uniform, women who have been untiring in their support for her. A very special and moving moment from a very honest and grateful lady. - Anon

 

It was a beautiful time to share memories of mums or other women who played a role in our lives. Later we had a rest home service and were able to give the ladies a rose and bookmark. It was nice to see those who had visitors, but for those who didn't for them too, to be honoured. - Ruth

 

It was great two calls from 2 of my adult children and got to church with my mum and dad. Then dinner out with extended family. Feeling very blessed. – Helen

 

Social media bombards me with pictures and would have me thinking on Mother’s Day that every mother loved their child except for mine, so what’s wrong with me? Mother’s Day is complex, and hard, and it’s ok if it leaves some of us feeling angry or sad.  But if the church is supposed to be a safe place for everyone, why do we labour over days like these that make so very many people feel so very awful? - Belinda

 

As a woman who is not a mother, I would love a way to express, explore and outpour the unique thing it is to be a woman, to be a mother, to wait for or hope for or not have motherhood. I wonder if there's a way to capture this and communicate it. – Rosy

 

Being thankful for those women who have shaped who I am. Being thankful for the honor of being a mum. Remembering what I learned a long time ago. Every woman will be a mothering influence in someone's life, and whether they have given birth or not, their role should be honored. - Karen

 

Great Mother’s Day service at the Whanganui Corps. Followed by wonderful morning tea. Men did the dishes! - Fran

 

Great 'Mum's Day Out' day with family. Meals together, mini golf (haven't laughed so much for a long time) visit to the cemetery and a teenager was playing a bagpipe for his loved one. Mum would have loved it. Homemade gifts. A really awesome day being together. - Jocelyn

 

Even though hubby was in hospital, it was wonderful to spend a lot of it with our daughter and her family. - Heather

 

Traveling to Trevecca - Amanda

 

Full morning surrounded by a loving church family kept my ‘poor-me' feeling at bay for most of the day. - Jenni

 

I had a good day. I was able to stay away from the church where I spent many Mother's Days feeling disrespected and unknown. I try to remember that today is actually the same as every other day, I am just as loved as on any other day - the label that has been put on the day is just a social custom - it has no deeper meaning or spiritual significance. There are so many women for whom the way this day is presented in church is unhealthy. We could do better. - Beth

 

Going to my daughter church and experiencing their amazing worship. - Judith

 

A day I certainly felt the distance of not being with women I would’ve loved to celebrate with, but also incredibly special spending the day with my 'hoped for'. - Emma

 

I enjoyed a meal at a restaurant. Time with family. Wonderful wishes and blessings from others. - Elizabeth

 

Juggling a day-release from hospital with my daughter who was determined to go to church, preaching on minimal sleep as I felt that was what God was saying to do, even though corps officers were encouraging me to be released and seeing the women of influence (every single one) in our corps being honoured by their loved ones. Then having lunch with family before heading back to hospital with my daughter. - Sarah

 

Fantastic day with my four children. Had a lovely meal together. - Nadezna

 

Mother’s Day was amazing, my mother’s gone to be with our Father but I was blessed to be able to meet my one of my sister’s daughters. Thank you Lord. - Grace

 

My oldest daughter peached her second sermon this morning! And while I cherish having 2 of my 3 girls today, I grieve as I remember my middle daughter who went to heaven a few months ago. A sad yet joyous day. - Stephanie

 

A huge thank you to each of the women who responded and shared vulnerably with their experience. We bless you.