Fourth Sunday in Lent

Fourth Sunday in Lent
   The Sundays in Lent are numbered. First, Second, Third, etc., through the six Sundays. But the last three Sundays are so striking in their teaching that additional names are given to them in order to emphasize that special teaching. Thus the 6th Sunday is called Palm Sunday; the 5th, Passion Sunday. So, also, the Fourth Sunday in Lent has its special name or names. Thus it is called Mid Lent Sunday because the middle of Lent has been reached. It is also called Refreshment Sunday from the Gospel for the Day which gives the account of our Lord feeding the multitude in the wilderness, and thereby indicating a more joyous note in the service for this day than belongs to the other Sundays in Lent. An old English name for this Sunday is Mothering Sunday. Mid Lent was considered somewhat of a holiday on which servants and children absent from home were permitted by their employers to visit their mothers. The name, doubtless, had its origin from the ancient custom of making pilgrimages to the Mother Church or Cathedral of the Diocese.
   See Lent, Sundays in.

American Church Dictionary and Cyclopedia. — New York, Thomas Whittaker. . 1901.

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