The powerful influence
“The merry month of May” is an apt description of the pleasant month we are experiencing. Those are ancient words that go back to a poem by that name written by Thomas Dekker and included in “The Shoemaker’s Holiday,” a play first performed in 1599. So, for 416 years, that old familiar phrase has been used to describe the pleasant month of spring.
But May has another, and far more important, designation. For 110 years, since Anna Jarvis promoted the first observance in Andrews Methodist Episcopal Church in Grafton, West Virginia, in 1908, the merry month has been associated with Mother’s Day, and the pleasant month has become a significant reminder of the powerful influence mothers have upon their sons and daughters.
That powerful influence is unquestioned. Three presidents of the United States — George Washington, Andrew Jackson and Abraham Lincoln —have affirmed that influence in powerful words.
Lincoln’s statement, probably, is more familiar to most of us. He said, “All that I am, or hope to be, I owe to my angel mother.”
Then, Washington said, “My mother was the most beautiful woman I ever saw. I attribute all my success in life to the moral, intellectual and physical education I received from her.”
And Andrew Jackson said, “There never was a woman like her. She was gentle as a dove and brave as a lioness…The memory of my mother and her teachings were, after all, the only capital I had to start life with, and on that capital I made my way.”
Not only during “the merry month of May” but also during every day of every month of every year, many men and women can make similar assertions. In their lives, they, too, have experienced, and can witness to the powerful influence good mothers have had upon their lives.
The powerful influence of good mothers is beyond question. Therefore, all of us owe an unpayable debt to our angel mothers.