26th March 2017
Lent IV: Refreshment Sunday, Mid-Lent, Lætare Sunday, Mothering Sunday

This Sunday has many traditional names. These include:

Lent IV, but this one is just because it is the fourth Sunday of Lent!

Mid-Lent Sunday, because it is positioned a little over half-way between Ash Wednesday and Easter;

Refreshment Sunday, because it is traditionally a day for pushing the boat out in a brief respite from the rigours of Lent, before plunging into the two-week drama that begins with Passion Sunday the next week;

Lætare Sunday, from the first word of the Introit at the Solemn Eucharist, which means O be joyful;

Rose Sunday, because it is one of only two Sundays in the church’s year on which rose-coloured (that is, a kind of pink) vestments are worn – the other is in Advent.

However, its best-known name is Mothering Sunday. This name comes from the medieval tradition of returning to one’s “mother church” or cathedral on this Sunday, but has evolved into a day during which many people in the UK especially celebrate, entertain, or otherwise remember their own mother.

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