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100 years later -- Celebrating fathers

In the pulpit

POSTED: June 21, 2010 12:46 p.m.
Today is dedicated to the men who sacrifice so much to provide for their families. Sometimes they go without to make ends meet. In this tough economy and times of high unemployment, these men work extra hours so their families can have food, clothing, shelter, and the necessities of life.
For many years, mothers were recognized with a special day, yet fathers did not get their day until 1910. The first Father’s Day observance was in Spokane, Wash. This year marks the 100-year celebration of Father’s Day.
It was not recognized as a national celebration until 1924 and it was not until 1972 that the third Sunday in June became a permanent holiday. Father’s Day is not only recognized in this country, but from Antigua to Zimbabwe in more than 50 countries worldwide.
As society has evolved, so has the role of fathers. In many homes throughout the world, instead of a two-parent family, there is only one parent. This may be a woman or a man. Even in two-parent homes, fathers are playing a more diversified role.
Fathers are picking children up from daycare, fixing hair, darning socks, helping with homework, washing clothes, preparing meals, holding conferences with teachers, taking children to church and doing a lot that they did not do before. Contrary to the stereotype of some dads, most don’t come home, hit the remote and tune out the family for the remainder of the evening.
We recognize the many contributions fathers make to the family and to society as a whole.
In his book, “Seven Things He’ll Never Tell You (But You Need to Know), psychologist, best-selling author Dr. Kevin Leman said a man’s top needs are: “To be respected (honored), to be needed and to be fulfilled.”
Take time to show dad that he is respected and needed. By doing these things, he will gain a sense of fulfillment. They don’t expect you to spend much on them. They just want to know that you care. If you have not called or visited him lately, today is a good time to do so. It is the thought and love behind what you do.
Some churches celebrate fathers by having a special programs and picnics, giving flowers or preparing a meal. The ladies of Pleasant Grove AME Church treated the fathers in the congregation to a banquet at Stafford Park in Hinesville on June 19.
Whatever you do, let love and unity abide.
Fathers, we salute you for all you do. Never think that you are taken for granted. God made you first and created you in His image.
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