A Short History of
It is common to celebrate days with little knowledge of their origin. The traditional Valentine’s Day or The Feast of Saint Valentine is such a day. “Valentine” derives from “valens,” which means strong, worthy, or powerful. These are apt descriptions for this little-appreciated martyr.
Tradition and legends abound. The truth is we have yet to learn much about the life of St. Valentine. We know that around 278 AD, Valentine, a holy priest in the days of Emperor Claudius II, was executed. The precise day is well acknowledged as February 14th.
Claudius was known for his cruelty. His unpopular and bloody campaigns required a strong army. To Claudius’ vexation, he could not draw many Roman soldiers to his cause. Valentine believed that the soldiers were strongly attached to their wives and families. As a result, Claudius banished marriages and engagements in Rome. Valentine believed this to be a great injustice and continued to perform marriages.
Another factor that made Valentine unpopular with Claudius was his commitment to helping persecuted Christians. He aided them as they fled and sought to protect them from tyrants. Valentine was faithful to the Christ he served.
Valentine’s high disregard for the laws of Claudius the Cruel and his strong faith were cause for arresting the 3rd-century priest. “He was apprehended and sent by the emperor to the prefect of Rome, who, in failing to convince Valentine to renounce his faith, commanded him to be beaten with clubs and beheaded him.
On this day, we celebrate this faithful saint who died for love, love of truth, and love for Christ; the Christ who gave his life that His Bride might live abundantly.
Catholic Online, http://www.catholic.org/saints/saint.php?saint_id=159
This article first appeared at UriBrito.com
Rev. Dr. Uri Brito is the pastor of Providence Church in Pensacola, Fl. He is the founder and a contributor to Kuyperian Commentary.
He married Melinda in 2003 and is the father of five children. He is a connoisseur of life and liturgy. He advocates for biblical theocracy and affirms the centrality of the Lord’s Day Worship as the supreme means to restore society to a proper Christendom. He affirms that the Psalter is a magnificent hymnbook to be sung consistently as a formational aspect of Christian existence.
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