Sunday, May 13, 2012

Mothers Day

  Mothers Day was originally birthed in the bosom of the early Peace Movement

Mother's Day Proclamation of 1870
Mother's Peace Day

This yearly event was first proposed by Julia Ward Howe. In 1870 she penned the Mothers Day Proclamation as  an antiwar observance. You may be more familiar with her name in relation to the lyrics of the  American Civil  War song Battle Hymn of the Republic, which she penned.

                                       "Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord;
                                He is trampling out the vintage where the grapes of wrath are stored;
                                     He hath loosed the fateful lightning of His terrible swift sword;
                                                               His truth is marching on.
                                                  Glory! Glory! Hallelujah! Glory! Glory! Hallelujah!
                                                  Glory! Glory! Hallelujah! His truth is marching on.

  Born  in 1819  to a wealthy and respected New York City family, Howe became a  woman suffrage leader, a prominent advocate of abolition, peace, racial justice and women's rights. as well as a published poet. Along with her husband Samuel Gridly Howe she co-published  "The Commonwealth", an anti-slavery paper.  In 1870 she devised the Mother's Day Proclamation and in 1872 on the second Sunday in June the first Mother's Peace Day rally was observed. The idea was widely accepted and rally's continued on that day for several years.  Unfortunately she was never able to have the day recognized as an official holiday. Mother's Peace day was the beginning of the mothers day holiday in the U.S. that is now observed in May.

 The gift's of candy's and flowers of the modern commercialized celebration bear little resemblance to Julia Ward Howe's original vision for Mother's Peace Day. 

Below is her original Mother's Day Proclamation in it's entirety:  

 Arise then...women of this day!
Arise, all women who have hearts!
Whether your baptism be of water or of tears!
Say firmly:
"We will not have questions answered by irrelevant agencies,
Our husbands will not come to us, reeking with carnage,
For caresses and applause.
Our sons shall not be taken from us to unlearn
All that we have been able to teach them of charity, mercy and patience.
We, the women of one country,
Will be too tender of those of another country
To allow our sons to be trained to injure theirs."
From the bosum of a devastated Earth a voice goes up with
Our own. It says: "Disarm! Disarm!
The sword of murder is not the balance of justice."
Blood does not wipe our dishonor,
Nor violence indicate possession.
As men have often forsaken the plough and the anvil at the summons of war,
Let women now leave all that may be left of home
For a great and earnest day of counsel.
Let them meet first, as women, to bewail and commemorate the dead.
Let them solemnly take counsel with each other as to the means
Whereby the great human family can live in peace...
Each bearing after his own time the sacred impress, not of Caesar,
But of God -
In the name of womanhood and humanity, I earnestly ask
That a general congress of women without limit of nationality,
May be appointed and held at someplace deemed most convenient
And the earliest period consistent with its objects,
To promote the alliance of the different nationalities,
The amicable settlement of international questions,
The great and general interests of peace.

On this Mother's Day. we pray for , peace and a hope filled future where no mother will  have to mourn the death of a child lost to  war...


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