7 ideas for navigating Mother’s Day at your church this year


First appeared in The Baptist newspaper, May 5, 2023 issue.  Used with Permission.

Mother’s Day is usually one of the most-attended services of the year. Every church is looking for Mother’s Day ideas that appropriately honor moms during this special service on the second Sunday in May.

It is important, however, that we don’t overdo Mother’s Day services because there will be women present who struggle with infertility or the death of a child along with others who wrestle with negative feelings toward their mothers. The goal is not to deify mothers but simply to honor them (Ex. 20:12, Eph. 6:2-3), so plan the emphasis accordingly — with emotion, gratitude and purpose. It should inspire all moms.

Opportunity for outreach

Also, Mother’s Day is a great reason for a family that may not attend regularly to come to church with their mother. It gives every mother or grandmother an excellent reason to invite her children or grandchildren.

Here are seven Mother’s Day ideas for your church to try:

1. Post meaningful mother’s influence videos. Leading up to Mother’s Day, use your social media or website to post short videos highlighting how moms have influenced people. Perhaps share a story from a pastor, deacon or member. Use the videos to invite people to your Mother’s Day service.

2. Highlight mothers from the Bible. A Mother’s Day idea for the sermon? Why not discuss how moms in the Bible played crucial roles in many of the prominent Bible stories. It may be fun to get volunteers to dramatize one of the stories.

3. Mother’s Day photo booth. Knowing mothers will be proud of their families and want to take advantage of this day to get a picture, consider repurposing your Easter photo backdrop or creating a new Mother’s Day backdrop. Use their phones to take the pictures or have a selfie stick for them to use. Remember, it’s not about your backdrop; it’s about giving them a reason to take a picture that is worthy of a prominent space in a frame or on their social media. Get them to tag your church or use a hashtag when they post it, and be sure your church or pastor likes or comments on each one.

4. Highlight children in the church service. Some churches have a women’s choir on this special day, but you may want the women to sit back and enjoy children singing to them. Every mom loves to have her child highlighted, and it gives the children another way to honor their mothers or grandmothers — and invite them if they don’t already attend.

5. Give them a meal break. Instead of contributing to the restaurant rush after Mother’s Day services when families want to treat their mothers, consider a potluck dinner for families. Even better? Cater the meal so no one has to prepare and bring food, which only adds to the stress of the day.

6. Say thank you. It sounds easy. Mother’s Day ideas don’t have to be complex! Take time in the service to show gratitude to the mothers and grandmothers. Don’t call out people because of their age or amount of children though. Instead, get children to fill out thank you cards for their moms in Sunday School or the children’s service. Some churches even provide free cards on their bathroom vanities for forgetful children.

7. Support a mother’s community ministry. Consider highlighting a community ministry from the stage by getting its director to share stories or show a short video, and take up a special offering to help it and the moms it assists.

EDITOR’S NOTE — Mark MacDonald is a communication pastor, speaker, consultant, bestselling author, church branding strategist for  BeKnownforSomething.com and executive director of Center for Church Communication, empowering 10,000+ churches to become known for something relevant (a communication thread) throughout their ministries, websites, & social media. His book, Be Known for Something, is available at BeKnownBook.com.

Continue reading at The Baptist Paper »