Remembering to honor our fathers

Father’s Day is always the third Sunday in June. The idea for creating a day for children to honor their fathers began in Spokane, Wash. A woman by the name of Sonora Smart Dodd thought of the idea for Father’s Day while listening to a Mother’s Day sermon in 1909. Having been raised by her father, Henry Jackson Smart, after her mother died, Sonora wanted her father to know how special he was to her. It was her father that made all the parental sacrifices and was, in the eyes of his daughter, a courageous, selfless and loving man. Sonora’s father was born in June, so she chose to hold the first Father’s Day celebration in Spokane on June 19, 1910.

In 1924, President Calvin Coolidge proclaimed the third Sunday in June as Father’s Day.

Traditionally, roses are the Father’s Day flowers: Red to be worn for a living father and white if the father has died.

The most repeated of the commandments is found in Exodus 4:12, the fifth commandment. It is repeated eight times throughout the Scriptures. Ephesians 6:2 & 3 instructs, “Honor your father and mother,” which is the first commandment with promise: “That it may be well with you and you may live long on the earth.”

What an honor to be called father. There is no higher office given to a man than that of father. It is the same title that the Creator of the universe uses, God the Father. The responsibilities of the office are high. It is the duty of fathers to care, protect and train their children. And it is his calling to love and honor the mother of his children. Man has no greater earthly obligation than this. The obligation is certain, “If (a man) does not provide for his own, and especially for those of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.” (1 Timothy 5:8). Obviously, God holds this office in high esteem.

Therefore, the office of father is to be honored. Note that God did not say that we are to honor our fathers if they are honorable. He simply said that we are to honor them. I have seen that repeatedly, when a child begins to honor his or her father (no matter what the age), the father becomes more honorable, even the worst of scoundrels.

How much more are we to honor those fathers who have done their level best to supply the needs and cares of their families?

Sons and daughters, honor your fathers. A kind word, a note and an “I love you Dad” will serve you well and honor him greatly. Remember that it is a commandment and his office is worthy.

Call your dad!

(“From the Pulpit” is a weekly sermon provided by the clergy members of The Weirton Ministerial Association)