Thursday, February 14, 2013

The history of Valentine's Day

"St. Valentine's Day began as a liturgical celebration of one or more early Christian saints named Valentinus."

The Catholic Church recognizes at least three different saints named Valentine or Valentinus, all of whom were martyred. One legend contends that Valentine was a priest who served during the third century in Rome. When Emperor Claudius 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 the decree, defied Claudius and continued to perform marriages for young lovers in secret. When Valentine's actions were discovered, Claudius ordered that he be put to death.” "

"The most popular martyrology associated with Saint Valentine was that he was imprisoned for performing weddings for soldiers who were forbidden to marry and for ministering to Christians, who were persecuted under the Roman Empire; during his imprisonment, he is said to have healed the
daughter of his jailer Asterius. Legend states that before his execution he wrote her a letter "from your Valentine" as a farewell. "

"The ancient Romans may also be responsible for the name ofour modern day of love. Emperor Claudius II executed two men — both namedValentine — on Feb. 14 of different years in the 3rd century A.D. Their martyrdom was honored by the Catholic Church with the celebration of St. Valentine's Day."

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