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Barnitz gives a thank-you to all mothers for upcoming Mothers' Day
Barnitz gives a thank-you to all mothers for upcoming Mothers' Day

State Senator Frank Barnitz
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (May 6, 2010) — The legislative session ends on May 14, and these final days can be stressful, busy, and even frustrating as we work to pass legislation. At times like these, I am particularly appreciative of the friends and family who have supported me. Abraham Lincoln once said, “I remember my mother’s prayers and they have always followed me. They have clung to me all my life.” It is true that the impact of our mother’s support stays with us throughout our lives. Mother’s Day will be May 9, and I would like to take this time to recognize all of the women in the 16th Senatorial District who work hard and impact so many lives.

My own mother worked side-by-side with my father on the farm while also raising me and my three sisters. Raising four kids was not an easy task, especially when that means shuttling them to their many 4-H meetings and school events. She remains supportive of all of us to this day and is the strength of our family. One of the most frightening things a son or daughter can imagine is losing a parent, and this fear came to the forefront when my mother was diagnosed with cancer. I am thankful every day that her strength got her through.

Another important mother in my life is my wife, Lisa. Raising our three daughters is not an easy task, especially with a husband in Jefferson City half of the year. Still, she remains a supportive and dedicated mother. She is an amazing role model for our daughters and is always there when they need her, whether as a teacher, friend, or source of support. On this Mother’s Day, I am particularly thankful for all of her hard work.

We have two women to thank for the creation of Mother’s Day. Anna Reeves Jarvis instituted Mothers’ Work Day in her home state of West Virginia in order to raise awareness about local sanitation issues. Meanwhile, another woman, Julia Ward Howe, attempted to institute a national celebration of mothers that honored women’s inclinations toward peace. Both of these celebrations enjoyed some popularity, but then quickly faded.

In 1905, Anna Reeves Jarvis passed away and her daughter, Anna Jarvis, took up her mother’s dream of creating a national day to honor mothers. In 1907, Anna launched her campaign by handing out white carnations to congregants at her mother’s church and, in 1908, the church held a special Sunday service to honor mothers — a tradition that spread the very next year to churches throughout the country. In 1914, the U.S. Congress passed a joint resolution, signed by President Wilson, establishing a national Mother’s Day to emphasize the role of women in their families.

Mother’s Day is a time to honor the women in your life that make a difference. All of us have someone to thank this Mother’s Day — it is a time to appreciate the people in our lives while you have them, no matter who that person is. Let us honor the mothers of the past and show gratitude to the moms, grandmas, aunts, and other female role models in our lives on this very special day.

If you would like to start receiving my column regularly, please visit my website at www.senate.mo.gov/barnitz and click the “Sign Up to Receive My E-Newsletter” link located under Constituent Services.

As always, I appreciate hearing your comments, opinions, and concerns. Please feel free to call me in Jefferson City at (573) 751-2108. You can also write to the address listed below:

Capitol Office
State Capitol Building
Room 427
Jefferson City, MO 65101

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