Friday, May 11, 2007

Working on your own holiday

Something like 75% of DREs are also mothers. The figure used to be nearly 100%, excepting a few 'poor childless women'. Now there are men in the profession, a growing number of YADREs fresh out of college, and the childfree. But still, most gatherings of DREs will be women, telling about the kids' latest exploits or reminiscing about when their children were that age. Women get into religious education when their own children are young--something about the flexible hours, the search for religious truth and meaning, and the need to have a role beyond mother.

But what was my point? Ah, yes. Mother's Day. Or, depending on the mood I'm in, Mothers' Day. Or Mothers Day. Every year the RE children do something special for their mothers and the many other nurturers in the congregation. It's a perfect day for a little tea party after service, for small handmade gifts and adorable children. (Ok, it's always a perfect day for adorable children. But they're expected to be on display on Mother's Day.) Sometimes you can work in the Julia Ward Howe angle, sometimes you're lucky to convince people to come to church between the breakfast-in-bed hilarity and the overcrowded Mother's Day Brunch. (And yes, the restauranteurs tell us that it IS the most popular day for people to eat out. Meanwhile, Father's Day is high on the list of most popular days to barbecue. But I'll blog about that holiday next month.)

Every year I claim that I'll get the menfolk to handle it. And most often they are happy to sign up to help delegate the children and prepare and serve tiny sandwiches and succulent fruit, to scoop up endless cups of punch and a fussing preschooler. But I've yet to find the right guy to handle the craft project, whether it's paper and glue or bath powder or clay hands. Maybe I'll put this on my August list of volunteer organization, as opposed to waiting for the spring...and I might actually get a Mother's Day gift that's an actual surprise. But today I need to get to work, arranging the materials for lots of construction paper chalice vases and 'let me help' flowers.

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