Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Happy Saint Valentine's Day

Saint Valentino was a Roman priest who performed weddings in spite of the Emperor Claudius' outlawing of marriage for Roman soldiers. He was martyred in the year 270.

The customs associated with Saint Valentine's Day come from various sources and intertwine nicely. For example, besides being St. Valentine's Day, it was believed that half way through the month of February is the time when birds choose their mates. The color red is the color of martyrs, and is also associated with love. In Greek mythology, Cupid is the son of Venus, and is portrayed as a small cherub who shoots love, represented by arrows, into people's hearts.

Interestingly, the Sacred Heart of Jesus is often shown with the wound from the soldier's sword that pierced it and the Immaculate Heart of Mary is often illustrated with the sword(s) of her "seven sorrows" piercing her heart, fulfilling Simeon's prophesy, "Thine own soul, a sword shall pierce."

For Catholics, Saint Valentine's Day should not be a mere "Hallmark Holiday" but a time to reflect on the great love that Christ has for us and the many gifts He has given us. How can we give back?

During the upcoming Lenten season, use the Church's recommendation for fasting, prayer and almsgiving to give back to Jesus, who loves you so much.

Hat tip to Fish Eaters for the wealth of info on Saint Valentine's Day.


father Joe said...

Happy Valentine's Day!

My name is Father Joe Jenkins and I am a priest of the Archdiocese of Washington. I have made a link on my page to your Blog. Any possibility that you could do the same on your site?

Here is my address:

God bless you all and keep on standing up for the sanctity of life!

Father Joe

4HisChurch said...

Thank you, Fr. Joe. You are on my list of links now.

Dymphna's favorite quotes

"Slavery ended in medieval Europe only because the church extended its sacraments to all slaves and then managed to impose a ban on the enslavement of Christians (and of Jews). Within the context of medieval Europe, that prohibition was effectively a rule of universal abolition. "— Rodney Stark

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