Retreat to Honor Our Mothers on Mother’s Day

A retreat for celebrating mothers and the relationship that continues to nurture us

This Sunday is Mother’s Day — a day dedicated to honoring our mothers. As we go through life, our relationships with our mothers evolve and our perspectives shift. We might feel distanced from our mothers or even at odds with them. This virtual retreat focuses on our changing relationships with our mothers. You can do this retreat on your own or with your mom! Live far away? Email her the link then get on the phone, Facetime or Skype. So, in addition to a card or gift (don’t forget!), celebrate Mother’s Day with your mother in a unique way. Click here to download the PDF.

Getting Started

Find a comfortable place in your home or even outdoors for this retreat. Take a few minutes to think about your mother or other women who have been nurturing figures in your life. You might want to light a candle in memory of any nurturing figures that have passed away.

Now, settle into the moment …

  • Close your eyes and breathe deeply
  • Recognize that God is with you


Loving God, we thank you for the gift of mothers who give us life. By their love and sacrifices, they have taught us how to love and make sacrifices for others. We are inspired by their faith and the way they have provided a foundation for knowing you. May you strengthen our mothers through your grace so that they can continue to grow as our examples of faith and love. And, may we, their sons and daughters, always honor them with a spirit of profound respect. Amen.


John 2: 1-11

“On the third day, there was a wedding in Cana of Galilee, and the mother of Jesus was there. Jesus and his disciples had also been invited to the wedding. When the wine gave out, the mother of Jesus said to him, “They have no wine.” And Jesus said to her, “Woman, what concern is that to you and to me? My hour has not yet come.” His mother said to the servants, “Do whatever he tells you.” Now standing there were six stone water jars for the Jewish rites of purification, each holding twenty or thirty gallons. Jesus said to them, “Fill the jars with water.” And they filled them up to the brim. He said to them, “Now draw some out, and take it to the chief steward.” So they took it. When the steward tasted the water that had become wine, and did not know where it came from (though the servants who had drawn the water knew), the steward called the bridegroom and said to him, “Everyone serves the good wine first, and then the inferior wine after the guests have become drunk. But you have kept the good wine until now.” Jesus did this, the first of his signs, in Cana of Galilee, and revealed his glory; and his disciples believed in him.”

Thoughts on the Reading

This passage is most notable because it features the first recorded miracle of Jesus’ ministry. It also has a message for us about the changing relationship between a mother and a son. Mary has played a very special role in Jesus’ life. She carried the Son of God in her womb. She watched as her son grew in God’s wisdom and knowledge, and bore witness to Jesus’ life-giving ministry. No doubt the parent-child relationship of Mary and Jesus had its ups and downs. The changes in both mother and child over time transformed their relationship. So it is with us today as we grow older and our parent-child relationship and even our role in that relationship changes. These changes can lead to even deeper bonds – connections that can produce miraculous things if we let them.

Reflecting on the Reading

Take a few moments to think about (or even write down) your responses to the following. If you do this retreat with your mother, share your reflections with one another.

  • For children: What are 3 things about your mom for which you give thanks?
  • For mothers: Name 3 ways that your child/children has made you into the person you are today.
  • What are your hopes for your relationship with your mother/child at this time of your life?
  • What aspects of your current relationship challenge these hopes?
  • What can you offer to your mother/child to support them at this time in their lives?
  • What can you offer to your mother/child to help your relationship grow?

Praying for the Community

God, we lift up for prayer all of the mothers in our midst. May we especially remember mothers without mothers, mothers who have lost children, single mothers, widows who are mothers, mothers in prison, mothers who struggle to feed their families, mothers who suffer physical and emotional abuse, and all women who face injustice and rejection as they work to nurture and raise their children.

Add your own: God, we remember mothers who…

Make a Commitment to Nurture Relationships

Using your reflection responses as a guide, make a doable personal commitment to embrace the changing relationship you have with your mother as an opportunity to better communicate with one another and form an even stronger bond of mutual respect and love.


God of all mothers, we draw closer to you through the relationships we have with others. As we pay tribute to our mothers this Mother’s Day, help us to always honor all of our relationships with utmost care and compassion. Help us to be patient in difficult times and rejoice at the small miracles that happen in the midst of our relationships with our mothers. Amen.