Father’s Day in Australia is on Sunday 6th September. Well, this year it was. It falls each year on the first Sunday in September. Mother’s Day is on the second Sunday in May.
There are many ‘picky’ comments about why the day is celebrated on different days in the countries that ‘keep’ it, however, in this post, I will look at the origin. At the same time, I recognize that this is not a ‘happy’ time for many children, or fathers. Although it is another subject, I wanted to recognize this fact.
Origin of Father’s Day
“In May of 1909, Sonora Smart Dodd of Spokane, Wash., sat in church listening to a Mother’s Day sermon. She decided she wanted to designate a day for her dad , William Jackson Smart. Dodd’s mother had died in childbirth, and Dodd’s father, a Civil War veteran, had taken the responsibility of singlehandedly raising the newborn and his other five children.
The following year, Dodd wanted to celebrate Father’s Day on June 5th, her father’s birthday, and petitioned for the holiday to be recognized in her city.”
Father’s Day, Australia
There is no definitive explanation why Father’s Day is celebrated in Australia and New Zealand on the first Sunday in September, though it is clear that the custom of the September date began in the mid 1930s.
An article in the Western Herald in 1964 said the day was officially designated as the first Sunday in September across the Commonwealth in 1964 and that the date was chosen for commercial reasons to distance it from other celebrations. This is similar to the date selected in Scandanavia, where November was also chosen to maximise its commercial value.
Jumping back in time
Could this be the start?
Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long upon the land which the Lord God gives you.
And in case you read over it without paying too much attention, as we are often prone to do… here is another way of looking at it…
God says in Leviticus 20 verse 9…
“For every one that curses his father or his mother shall be surely put to death: he has cursed his father or his mother; his blood shall be on him.”
Therefore it is clear that God’s instruction in the 5th commandment to honor parents was not a mere suggestion for children.
Fathers and children
Here is a recognition for you…
Tread softly, and remember we are not wearing their shoes.