Most of us are aware of the fact that Mother’s Day celebrations began in the United States of America after a campaign by Anna Jarvis who was determined to get a day dedicated to mothers in order to honour her mother Ann Reeves Jarvis’ work and memory. Though we celebrate Mother’s Day today (second Sunday of May), the day is celebrated in different ways and on different dates in other countries worldwide. Read on to find out more.
India Many urban Indians celebrate Mother’s Day the westernised way by giving gifts or cards to their mothers. Many take time out to think about their mothers and spend time with her. But in a country as diverse as ours, there are sure to be different ways to honour the mother even if they might not revolve around today.
Japan Celebrating ‘haha no hi’ in Japan is an arty affair. An art competition is held where children submit their mothers’ paintings and the winners get a tour across the country. Carnations are another important aspect of the celebrations and sometimes, kids take over the household chores and cooking work in the house too.
United Kingdom Mother’s Day in UK is celebrated on the fourth Sunday of Lent (the 40 day preparation period before Easter when many Christians observe fasts and spiritual discipline). It is said to be similar to the Mothering Sunday which used to be celebrated in honour of Mother Mary. Today, Mother’s Day celebrations in UK are quite similar to those in the US.
USA This was the birthplace of the holiday and though Anna Jarvis was against the commercialisation of the holiday, the day is celebrated amidst much festive fervour in the US. Cards, gifts and flower sale plummet on this day which is considered by many as the third biggest holiday after Christmas and Valentine’s Day.
Mexico As opposed to its Northern neighbour, Mexican Mother’s Day celebrations are somewhat traditional. The date is fixed to May 10 and churches organise special masses. The traditional morning meal of tamales and atole is also distributed to all local mothers and the children are required to be present a day prior to the celebrations, in the house.
Thailand As bizarre as it may seem, Mother’s Day in Thailand is celebrated on the birthday of Thailand’s queen, on August 12. The celebrations are only about 30-odd years old and were started in order to promote the royal family. Mothers and children enjoy the day by being together. Activities like concerts and more are also organised on this day.
France It is said that mothers of large families were honoured during the Napolean era and a similar celebration resumed after the First World War to honour mothers who helped in repopulating France. A mother of four or more stood a chance to win a medal. The modern day celebrations include sending of chocolates, cakes and perfumes to mothers.
Ethiopia The three-day Antrosht celebrations are dedicated to moms in Ethiopia and are held at the end of the rainy season. The activities include a large feast wherein daughters are responsible to bring vegetables and sons, the meat. Celebrations also include singing and dancing with family members.
Serbia Now this is an unusual celebration. Like Ethiopia, Serbia celebrates the bonds of family over three days. These include Children’s Day, Mother’s Day and Father’s Day. During each of the celebration, the concerned is tied up and made to promise something in order to be set free. So while the children freed only when they promise to behave well, the mother is freed when she agrees to cook yummy treats for the family and the father is untied when he promises to bring goodies and gifts for the family.