GIFT AND APPRECIATION CEREMONIES BRING WOMEN FROM THE SHADOWS INTO THE SPOTLIGHT AT GFA-ORGANIZED MOTHER'S DAY CELEBRATIONS
WILLS POINT, Texas—Thank-yous and simple gifts prompted tears of gratitude when hard-working women were publicly honored for their care for their families by GFA-supported (Gospel for Asia) workers.
This was the first time these women had celebrated Mother’s Day or had ever been acknowledged for their important role in a part of the world where women often carry most of the responsibility of raising their children, while being marginalized and overlooked for their great sacrifice.
Local GFA-supported workers invited women from their surrounding communities to attend events where they were encouraged in their roles, told by their children how they were appreciated, and given gifts like flowers, plates, and clothing. Some participating children washed their mothers’ feet as a cultural symbol of their respect and appreciation.
“A mother plays a vital role in the development of her family,” one GFA-supported leader told a group of mothers. “She is the most important person in the life of a child, as her behavior and habits become a model for her child.”
The Mother’s Day events were arranged as part of GFA-supported workers ongoing commitment to caring for women as deserving of greater respect and honor.
“We wanted them to know how special they are, not just because of what they do for others but also as individuals in their own right who are loved and cared for by God,” said Dr. K.P. Yohannan, founder and director of GFA.
Participants received handmade cards and gifts such as new clothes. At several gatherings, the celebrations ended with the distribution of bunches of flowers and slices of specially baked cakes.
“I am feeling so special and exceedingly happy,” said one of the mothers who was honored. “I was very happy to hear the good words about mothers.”
At one of the events, one of the GFA-supported leaders had words of encouragement for the children, telling them that their mother was a precious gift to them. “No one else can take her place in your lives,” he said. “Just like Jesus Christ took care of his mother, it is our responsibility to care for and love our mothers.”
Children who had been encouraged to make cards and gifts for their mothers presented them at the end of the celebrations. Among those touched by the gesture was a 45-year-old mother who said: “All these years I have never received such kind of honor from my children, but today I feel proud and happy in my heart.”
One girl who attended one of the events said that she had not known it was Mother’s Day. “But after attending the program I realized how much we need to be thankful to our mother,” she said. “Thank you so much for inviting me to this program.”
“Small gestures, like thank-yous and gifts on Mother’s Day, can go a long way to giving people the dignity and respect they deserve,” said Yohannan. “We believe God made everyone of value and worth, regardless of their situation in life. We are glad to have been able to express his love and care to some of those whose selflessness can so often be overlooked or taken for granted.”
PHOTO CUTLINE: Slices of cake, handmade cards and small gifts honored often-overlooked mothers at Mother’s Day celebrations hosted in communities across different parts of Asia by GFA-supported (Gospel for Asia) teams.
GFA (Gospel for Asia) has – for more than 30 years ‒ provided humanitarian assistance and spiritual hope to millions across Asia, especially among those who have yet to hear the Good News. Last year, this included more than 75,000 sponsored children, free medical services for more than 180,000 people, 6,000 wells drilled, 11,000 water filters installed, Christmas presents for more than 400,000 needy families, and spiritual teaching available in 110 languages in 14 nations through radio ministry.