Mother's Day and Peace, and the really important stuff...

The Rector of all Lewes drew my attention to the following wonderful video on Mothers Day for Peace. Take a look. It is a powerful reminder of what we are called to remember today, tomorrow and everyday.

This is the text of Julia Ward Howe's Mother's Day Proclamation.

Arise, then, women of this day! Arise all women who have hearts,
whether our baptism be that of water or of fears!

Say firmly: "We will not have great questions decided by
irrelevant agencies. Our husbands shall 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 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 bosom of the 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 plow 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 then solemnly take counsel with each other as to the
means whereby the great human family can live in peace, each
bearing after their own time the sacred impress, not of Caesar,
but of God.

In the name of womanhood and of humanity, I earnestly ask that a
general congress of women without limit of nationality may be
appointed and held at some place deemed most convenient and at
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

Julia Ward Howe

1 comment:

  1. I preached Julia Ward Howe's address last year on Mothers' Day, and will be doing so again this year. I ask you to remember, also, Juliet Calhoun Blakely. On the second Sunday in May, 1877, she took over the pulpit in her church in Albion, Michigan because the minister was unable to preach. The night before, the sons of staunch temperance advocates had gotten drunk, and the minister's son was among him. For shame, he left the pulpit, and Juliet Calhoun Blakely stepped up to the plate. Her sons established, in that congregation, a mothers' day from then on in her honor.

    Remember also Anna Jarvis the elder, who, organized women during the Civil War, on both sides of the divide, to improve sanitary conditions so their sons might better survive their wounds, and tried tirelessly to establish "Mothers' Friendship Days" to promote reconciliation between Union and Confederate neighbors. Her daughter, also Anna Jarvis,set in motion the first national Mothers' Day to remember what her mother had done.

    And, finally, do not forget the women of the Anglican Communion who gathered in March in New York as a delegation to the 51st Session of the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women. Their statement, reiterating "our previously stated unequivocal commitment to remaining always in 'communion' with and for one another" fulfills Julia Ward Howe's dream for an international day of women for peace. The Anglican women's statement concludes: "This sisterhood of suffering is at the heart of our theology and our commitment to transforming the whole world through peace with justice. Rebuilding and reconciling the world is central to our faith."

    "Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, bright as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb through the middle of the street of the city. On either side of the river is the tree of life...and the leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations."
    Happy Mothers' Day,
    Lois Keen


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