The Arenal Area Magazine

Mother’s Day in Costa Rica


In the United States, we celebrate Mother’s Day in 2010 on May 9, the second Sunday in May. In Costa Rica, Mother’s Day is a National Holiday, celebrated on August 15.

In both of these countries and many others which celebrate it as well, it is a day to honor all mothers, celebrating motherhood generally and the positive contributions of mothers to society.

As Costa Rica is a Catholic country, the date for Mother’s Day coincides with the Feast of the Assumption. Mother Mary serves as the ultimate role model for all mothers. According to Catholic teachings, Mother Mary having completed the course of her earthly life was assumed body and soul into heavenly glory. This doctrine was defined by Pope Pius XII, November 1, 1950, in his Apostolic Constitution Munificentissimus Deus. This doctrine was dogmatically and infallibly defined. This belief is known as the Dormition by the Orthodox. In the churches which observe it, the Assumption is a major holiday and in many countries is a Catholic Holy Day of Obligation.

August is the second best month for retailers, in Costa Rica, topped only by the month of December with the Christmas buying season. Retailers offer great deals during this month on appliances and home furnishings. The gifts to mothers are often quite large and may even include automobiles. Travel during this period is congested, with children traveling home to see their mothers. As a National Holiday, many businesses and offices will be closed.

In the past the government tried to move Mother’s Day to the Monday of the week, as with many other holidays, however there were protests and it is now celebrated on August 15, whatever day of the week on which that occurs

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