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Shannon Kuzmich

Who the Heck was Saint Valentine, Anyway?

by | Jan 28, 2020

My husband and I are celebrating our 25th wedding anniversary this year. Why is it when I say, “Gee, it doesn’t feel like that long!” he looks at me like I’m crazy. Does that mean the years have been harder on him than they have on me? Well, too bad. We all have our crosses to bear.

Before you wonder if we’re headed for divorce, I’ll let you in on a secret. My husband and I communicate our love through banter. It’s true! Which is why we stopped leading Bible studies; we made too many people, the wives in particular, uncomfortable with our similarly dry senses of humor. Uh … they didn’t get it.

Anyway, Valentine’s Day is on the horizon. We usually don’t do much on Valentine’s Day other than enjoy a nice steak with a bottle of Zinfandel while watching some kid friendly movie. Yes, we’ve spent many an evening watching Star Wars or The Incredibles for the 77th time, or binging on episodes of Monk. It’s how we roll.

Things are changing though. We recently managed to line up a respite worker for our little Christina so that my husband and I can actually go somewhere without teen-in-tow. And that means, for the first time in forever (Frozen on the brain), we can take a weekend trip away for our anniversary! And get to know each other without the distraction of the kid dynamic.

Valentine’s Day falls on a Friday this year. Woo hoo! That means we can go out for more than three hours … maybe see an R-rated movie, huh? But could there be more to Valentine’s Day than that? I wondered, so I did a little research (How did I ever function without Wikipedia? By the way, Wikipedia is struggling financially … consider supporting them. I am. I started sending them $10 per month as part of my 2020 kindness goals).

Wikipedia states:

Saint Valentine (Italian: San Valentino, Latin: Valentinus) was a widely recognized 3rd-century Roman saint, commemorated in Christianity on February 14. From the High Middle Ages his Saints’ Day is associated with a tradition of courtly love.”

Huh. That doesn’t tell me much. Reading on …

There are numerous martyrdom stories associated with various Valentines connected to February 14,[3] including a written account of Saint Valentine of Rome’s imprisonment for performing weddings for soldiers who were forbidden to marry and for ministering to Christians persecuted under the Roman Empire.[4] According to legend, Saint Valentine restored sight to the blind daughter of his judge,[5] and he wrote her a letter signed “Your Valentine” as a farewell before his execution.[6] 

Now, that’s more like it! Very romantic. I love it when people do crazy things in the name of love. Which could easily lead me to a 3,000 word blog post, but since this is going into my monthly newsletter, I’ll resist the temptation.

My husband and I wish you a beautiful Valentine’s Day experience that is joyful, restorative, and refreshing.

What are your plans for the holiday?

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