“As truly as God is our Father, so truly is God our Mother. We were created by the motherhood of love, a mother’s love which never leaves us.” – Julian of Norwich
These words were written by Julian of Norwich, a 14th-century English woman, visionary, and theologian. Julian also writes that the love of a kind human mother, like every other goodness in this world, is itself God’s own love at work. Sometimes we say this on Mother’s Day in a way that idealizes motherhood.
This Mother’s Day, then, let’s acknowledge the huge variety of experiences of motherhood in our lives. Some of us are mothers ourselves – whether by giving birth, by adoption, or by marrying a parent. Some of us, like me, are people who are not mothers, although we may mother in other ways as godparents, as caregivers, or by caring for clients, students, or patients. Some of us are men, who in the 21st century, have the opportunity to care intimately for our own children in the way that only mothers did for much of recorded history.
This message is excerpted from “The Motherhood of God” by Elaine Julian Ramshaw in the May 2021 Gather magazine. Today is the Fourth Sunday of Easter. Today is Mother’s Day. Today we commemorate Julian of Norwich, renewer of the church, c. 1416.
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