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History of Fathers Day

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History of Fathers' Day:  Fathers (and men in general) tend to either be ignored or bashed these days. Since the Feminist Movement in the 1960’s, men have been degraded, ridiculed and picked on without mercy. Many men don’t have a clue what it means to be a man or a father anymore. I find that very sad.

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Fathers bring something to their children that mothers cannot. While mothers bring nurturing, fathers bring strength. This statement is not intended to be degrading to the many single mothers who have to do the job of both parents. I was once a single mother myself. I know how hard that job can be. But the best thing for children is to have both a mother and a father. Statistics routinely show that children who have both a mother and a father, as well as a stable home life do better both in school and in life.

In honor of fathers everywhere, I’m providing some information on the history of Fathers' Day and the value and role of fathers.

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History of Fathers' Day

The first observance of Fathers' Day is believed to have been held on July 5, 1908 in a church located in Fairmont, West Virginia, by Dr. Robert Webb of West Virginia at the Central United Methodist Church of Fairmont.

The idea for creating a day for children to honor their fathers began in Spokane, Washington. Sonora Smart Dodd came up with the idea for a special day to honor fathers while listening to a sermon on Mother’s Day in 1909.

Mrs. Dodd was raised by her father, William Jackson Smart, after her mother died. Sonora wanted her father to know how special he was to her and what a wonderful father he was. Her father had made all the parental sacrifices and was, in her eyes, a courageous, selfless and loving man. Sonora’s father was born in June; therefore, she chose to celebrate the first Fathers Day on the 19th of June, 1910.

It took many years to make the holiday official. Where Mothers Day was met with enthusiasm, Fathers Day was ignored or met with laughter and ridicule.

A bill was introduced in 1913. U.S. President Calvin Coolidge supported the idea. In 1924, a National Fathers Day Committee was formed in New York City, N.Y. Fathers Day was recognized by a joint resolution of Congress in 1956. In 1972, President Richard Nixon established a permanent national observance of Fathers Day to be held on the third Sunday of June.

In addition to Fathers Day, International Men’s Day is celebrated in many countries, most often on November 19th.

What Makes a Dad

Good took the strength of a mountain,
The majesty of a tree,
The warmth of a summer sun,
The calm of a quiet sea,
The generous soul of nature,
The comforting arm of night,
The wisdom of the ages,
The power of the eagle’s flight,
The joy of a morning in spring,
The faith of a mustard seed,
The patience of eternity,
The depth of a family need,
Then God combined these qualities,
When there was nothing more to add,
He knew His masterpiece was complete,
And so, He called it . . . Dad

(Author is unknown)

Honoring our Parents

Both mothers and fathers should be honored regardless of whether they were the type of parents you wanted or needed. One of the God’s Top 10 Commandments is: honor thy father and mother.

Honoring doesn’t mean that you are saying your parents were perfect.  Many parents, fathers and/or mothers, have been or are abusive. It also doesn’t mean you have to put up with abuse. NEVER put up with abuse.  In these unfortunate instances, the best way to honor them is to pray for them to change.

Parenting is one of the hardest and most rewarding jobs ever.  Most parents do a good job. Many do a great job, so don’t forget to honor your parents!

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