The Director's Note is written today by Donna Mills, co-coordinator of the Charter for Compassion's Women and Girls Sector. She and her co-lead, Sara Jamil, have been involved in extensive conversations to expand their work to embrace Gender Partnerships. You'll be learning more about this newly titled sector soon. Below Donna addressed the origins of Mother's Day and its importance as an international Day of Peace.
The United States and many other countries will celebrate Mother's Day, on Sunday, May 9th. Indeed, all countries delegate a particular day to recognize the positive social impacts of mothering in our individual and worldwide communities. The U.S. and others recognize the second Sunday in May, so let's have a closer look at the roots of our second Sunday in May.
Julia Ward Howe, American poet and author of the Battle Hymn of the Republic, wrote her famous proclamation calling for a Mother's Peace Day in the year 1870. After bearing witness to the carnage of the Civil War, she called for an appeal to all mothers: to spare their sons, and the sons of others, the great sufferings created by war. She called for a general congress of women to join to bewail and grieve all that has been lost to war, to violence, to domination.
Her message was to promote the great and general interest of peace. She called to women and mothers around the globe, of all nationalities, without limit. In 1870. Let's listen to her plea, read by the Women & Girls (W&G) Sector visionary Joan Marie.
So, you see, our current Mother's Day Celebration is not exactly what Julia Ward Howe had in mind. BUT-- our Joan Marie heard her call quite clear and brought Julia's vision to the Charter for Compassion W&G's Sector.
Joan understood that Julia was not asking for a day to honor mothers, but a day that mothers would hear and honor the urgent call for peace. In 2020, the W&G's Sector took apart Julia's proclamation for Peace - line by line - and created the conversations you can find here at theV2020 series.
Joan's vision has been ten years in gestation and development, and will continue to birth through the portal of the W&G's Sector throughout the 2020's. Her dedication to Julia's proclamation for Peace already ripples through the W&G's Sector, as well as other areas of the Charter, Compassionate California, and through her own work as artist and activist. How could it not? Compassion through the Arts is Joan Marie's thing.
As the W&G's Sector began to pull apart the writings of Julia Ward Howe, they began to witness a new paradigm emerging. Paired together with the imperative work of Riane Eisler on the concepts of Partnership, the W&G's Sector began to look at our societal challenges (domination, police violence, racial injustice, etc.) through the lens of not only compassion and partnership, but also through the lens of Julia's proclamation.
As a result, the W&G's Sector recently reframed itself to reflect the growth of our collective compassionate connections and global healing. Gender Partnerships will serve as the overarching umbrella sector promoting healing among genders and will also serve as the home portal for three sub-sectors: Women & Girls, Men & Boys, and LGBTQA+. A place and space for gender healing and reconciliation individually, and in partnership.
This is the beginning of a narrative of peace that mothers, and people of all nations can join together to co-create. Mothers are thecompassionate architects of society, they are nation builders, and they offer the compassionate and courageous medicine the world requires now. The invitation to mothers around the globe is to rise into this sacred trust and responsibility of peace inspired by Julie Ward Howe, 151 years ago.
In a world wrecked by domination and violence, partnership and compassionhelp us promote the alliance of different nationalities, the amicable settlement of international questions, and Julia's plea to attend to the great and general interest of peace. Happy Mother's PEACE Day.
With warm regards,
Marilyn and Donna
This message from Marilyn Turkovich, Executive Director of the Charter for Compassion, appeared in our 05/02/2021 weekly newsletter. To sign up for our newsletter, scroll all the way down to the bottom menu, enter your email address and click on subscribe.