Well, if you haven’t noticed it is Valentine’s Day. Many of us celebrate this day by expressing our feelings to our love ones with gifts of flowers and candy, all in the name of St. Valentine.
But I was wondering what is the origin of Valentine’s Day? My husband thinks the card, candy and flower companies all got together to create yet another “holiday” to sell their products. But long before the mass marketing Valentine’s Day was a love centered holiday. But who is the mysterious saint and why do we celebrate this holiday? One legend contends that Valentine was a priest who served during the third century in Rome. When Emperor Claudis II decided that single men made better soldiers than those with wives and families, he outlawed marriage for young men. Valentine, realizing the injustice of this ruling, defied Claudis and in secret continued to perform marriage for young couples. When these actions were discovered, Claudis ordered Valentine be imprisoned and sentenced to death. It is legend that Valentine himself actually sent the first ‘valentine’ greeting himself. While in prison, it is believed that Valentine fell in love with a young girl – who was his jailors daughter-who visited him during his confinement. Before his death, it is alleged that he wrote her a letter which he signed “From your Valentine”. . Since then Saint Valentine has been recognized as a martyr who sacrificed himself in the name of true love.
And although the truth behind the Valentine legend is murky the story certainly symbolizes love and romance. Although I am a firm believer in everyday telling the people you love just how much they mean to you …take an extra second today, in the name of Saint Valentine, to tell those you care about just how much they mean to you.