Pax Christi USA - PSA e-Bulletin
Pray-Study-Act: Reflecting on the true meaning of Mother's Day
In This Issue
PRAY: Mother's Day Proclamation, 1870
STUDY: The history of Mother's Day
ACT: Roses for Peace

On The Web

 Make a commitment to peace by starting or joining a Pax Christi chapter in your parish, community or campus


Pray daily for peace, using the Prayer of St. Francis, or one of your own choosing


  Write your Member of Congress and urge them voice opposition to war and offer moral leadership


Honor Thy Mother by calling your Senator and asking for comprehensive chemical policy reform that upholds our mothers' efforts to keep our families healthy (click here and scroll down to "Take Action"

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May 5, 2011



As much of the world celebrates the demise of Osama bin Laden and also prepares to celebrate Mother's Day, John Dear, S.J. invokes us to pray to the God of peace for a new spirit of universal love and creative nonviolence, that the days of vengeance, assassination, drone attacks, nuclear terrorism and war will soon end and a new day of peace will dawn.


Mother's Day for PeaceOver 100 years earlier, Julia Ward Howe's Mother's Day Proclamation called us to much the same. Having become so distraught by the death and carnage of the Civil War, she called on mothers to come together and protest what she saw as the futility of their sons killing the sons of other mothers. 


Julia Ward Howe believed that women have the power to promote life over death, peace over war and love over hate, so it is in this spirit that we ask Pax Christi members and friends to respond to the violence that confronts us day in and day out. Let us arise and honor all of humanity by praying and working for an end to war.


On a personal note, I want to extend my heartfelt gratitude to all of you who have showered me with prayers, cards, emails, and exceptional kindness during the past six months as I recover from a very serious lung infection. I truly believe that the prayers of the Pax Christi community played a significant role in the fact that I am here and well enough to prepare this Mother's Day e-bulletin. Thank you.


God bless the whole world...no exceptions,


Phyllis Turner Jepson

Pax Christi Palm Beach (FL)

PRAY: Mother's Day Proclamation, 1870

by Julia Ward Howe


Arise then...women of this day!

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 bosom 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 out 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.


STUDY: History of Mother's Day

1. Read the history of Julia Ward Howe and Mother's Day and make a point of sharing it with your children and grandchildren so that they have an understanding of Mother's Day beyond all the commercialization we experience today.


2. As much of the world rejoices over the recent death of Osama bin Laden, let us spend time reflecting on one or more of the articles below which challenge us to turn away from vengeance and to live more fully the gospel of peace. 

ACT: Send a "Rose for Peace" this Mother's Day

Send a "Rose for Peace" to your Mother and other women who have touched your life.


The health and security of our families is the foremost imperative in reducing weapons of mass destruction, and women should be front and center in this critical fight.

 ~ Mary Estrin


What mother doesn't want a more peaceful world for her children? Instead of giving your mother another Hallmark card, give her the gift of Roses for Peace. Money goes directly to ensure that the world is safer for her children and yours, a legacy that lasts longer than just one day.


Ploughshares Fund's Roses for Peace campaign aims to rediscover Mother's Day as it was originally intended: as a holiday for peace. In 1870, abolitionist and suffragette Julia Ward Howe penned the "Mother's Day Proclamation," as a way to organize women to work for the peaceful world they desired for their families in the wake of America's most deadly conflict.


For every donation, Ploughshares Fund will send a handwritten card and roses to your mother, letting her know that she inspired you to work for a more peaceful world.


At the same time, funds raised will go to eliminate the world's deadliest weapons: nuclear bombs.


So, forget about Hallmark. Click here and give roses for peace.