Twice a year I grit my teeth when shopping and steadfastly ignore the cards for ‘Mother’s Day’ and ‘Father’s Day’ because of the positioning of the apostrophe. Since, I reason, these celebrations are for all mothers and all fathers, I dislike the fact that the apostrophe indicates the singular ‘mother’ and ‘father’.

Apostrophes are fantastic punctuation marks and I despair over their misuse. They indicate the omission of letters (in examples such as ‘they’re’, the apostrophe indicates the omission of the letter a) or show possession (the boy’s sister = the sister of the boy.) If the noun is plural and ends in s, the apostrophe goes after the s, thus the boys’ sister = the sister of the boys. One punctuation mark changing the whole meaning of the sentence. How hard can that be to understand?

Today is Fathers’ Day, and I salute the many fathers in the world who do a fantastic job of bringing up their children. I’m grateful for my father and for my hushand’s fathering skills. But today, according to the cards, is Father’s Day and actually, I can live with that too. For God is our Father and Sunday is definitely His day, so yes, it’s Father’s Day too! He is our Father in heaven, as the Lord’s prayer teaches, and a father to the fatherless (Ps 68). He is the best father we could have and we need to honour and serve Him every day, not just once a year.