I am reminded rather poignantly of several Mothers’ Days in past years on which I said Mass at the juvenile detention center in Pacoima. At the end of Mass, we would present carnations to the young mothers who were incarcerated. No visits from their babies, no breakfast in bed, no outdoor festivities, just a small flower to remind them of what they have lost. I also think of the millions of mothers around the world who are refugees, torn from their homes and often unable to care for their children, those mothers who are separated from their children because of unstable governments or their immigration status. I think of mothers who have lost their children.
It is a wonderful thing to acknowledge the total self-giving love of a mother for her children. It is also important that, as good children we honor our mothers by working to change the systems that place so many mothers in jeopardy. St. Francis of Assisi says, ”Start by doing what's necessary; then do what's possible; and suddenly you are doing the impossible.” This is the road to perfection. Let us show our gratitude to our mothers by our actions of charity.