Being a mother is one of the most rewarding experiences one could ever hope for. At the very moment when you find out another little person is growing in your womb, or joining your family through adoption your life is forever and beautifully changed. Motherhood encompasses so much. It’s those adoring little eyes that gaze upon you as if you are the most important being in all the world. It is those chubby little hands that grab your face to make sure you are listening intently to a story that likely has no end. It is those caring little hearts that bring you flowers from the neighbor’s garden. It’s those handprints and even drawings on the wall made just for you. It’s those sweet moments of triumph when your child accomplishes a feat he didn’t think he could. It’s the joyful chaos that encompasses many days. It’s those moments when your heart breaks as your child is forgotten, made fun of, or left out, and you long to repair the damage—sometimes from a great distance, as children grow and leave home to begin their own lives. It’s those late nights waiting to hear the door open and close so you know all of your children are once again safe in your home. And it’s those sleepless nights with newborns, frustrated toddlers, sick children, or teenagers and adult children who just need to talk.

Motherhood is more than a job; it’s a vocation. Regardless of whether we stay at home, work from home, or go to work, we don’t get snow days, sick days, or even days off. We are charged with protecting little souls from the moment they are created until the day God calls them home. We are charged with being ever vigilant and never letting down our guard. Every story read, every affirming touch, every listening ear, every meal made, every tear dried and bandage applied—it all matters.

Motherhood is an incredibly special vocation that is closely tied with building a culture of life. As Saint John Paul II writes in his apostolic letter Mulieris Dignitatem (On the Dignity and Vocation of Women):

Motherhood involves a special communion with the mystery of life, as it develops in the woman’s womb. The mother is filled with wonder at this mystery of life, and “understands” with unique intuition what is happening inside her. In the light of the “beginning,” the mother accepts and loves as a person the child she is carrying in her womb. This unique contact with the new human being developing within her gives rise to an attitude towards human beings—not only towards her own child, but every human being—which profoundly marks the woman’s personality.

Think about that for a moment. Accepting (or rejecting) the role of motherhood can have a direct impact on the way you treat all human beings. That’s profoundly breathtaking, but at the same time heartbreaking when you consider the moms who made the choice to reject motherhood (many due to outside pressure) and the impact that has had on their hearts, their families, and our culture. Those moms need prayers, mercy, and love. And we owe it to regretful and hurting moms to help them carry their burden and forgive themselves so that they may heal their hearts, and in turn, help to heal the culture.

When you open yourself to new life, you are accepting immeasurable joy, but also the potential for suffering as well. Think of all the moms who have suffered loss through miscarriage, stillbirth, and early childhood loss, those moms who have bravely said goodbye shortly after saying hello. Those moms also need prayers, love, support, and understanding.

Motherhood is a privilege and an honor. After all, God chose a mother to be the most elevated person in heaven. He knows the power of a mother’s influence over her children. He knew that we needed a mother in heaven to look after us.

So, as Mother’s Day approaches, we wanted to say thank you to all of you moms who stand with us as we work to build a culture of life. Whether you are a mother to one child or a dozen, or your little ones all reside in heaven, you are an essential part of God’s plan to bring this culture back to life. And if you are a godmother, an aunt, or a grandma who has stepped in to positively change and impact the life of a child or children who needed your love, we honor you. And we thank you for taking your role in the lives of the children you love so seriously. You are important. You are loved. You are needed. We are humbled by your perseverance and your willingness to follow the road less travelled. Mostly, as mothers ourselves, we are honored and blessed to be on this journey with you.

Let us pray for one another, for our children and our culture. Amidst the darkness of this world—a world where motherhood is not revered but is instead looked down upon—you shine a beautiful light. You have the power to change the world one heart at time. You are not thanked nearly enough for all you do to impact the culture, and we just want you to know that we stand with you as you work tirelessly to impact your children, solidify in them values that honor family and life, and equip them with the tools they need to step into the culture and turn it back to life.

Happy Mother’s Day from our hearts to yours!

Catherine, Mary, and Susan (The CLSP Team)