Another popular saint is Valentine. We have a video that our family loves and watched each year of his life. Valentine was a Roman nobleman who became a Christian and legend has it that he did marriages of soldiers who were not permitted to marry. Some of the couples he married were caught and imprisoned. The story goes that he tore red paper into the shape of hearts, wrote messages of encouragement to his people and had them delivered by the blind jailer’s daughter. The girl was caught and Valentine offered to face the arena as a nobleman instead of his people. The jailer’s daughter was healed and Valentine died a martyr on Feb 14, 269. The West world celebrates Feb. 14 and the Eastern church celebrates July 6 in memory of Valentine’s love for his people and the little blind girl. Valentine is the patron saint of lovers, of epileptics and of beekeepers.
When we think of St. Valentine, we think of love and giving expressions of love. John 15:12-13 says “12 ‘This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. 13 No one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” Love seems like the foundation supporting St. Francis of Assisi’s love for animals, St. Christopher’s desire to serve the greatest king, St Patrick’s desire to return to Ireland and share his faith, and St. Valentine’s sacrifice for his friends. 1 John 4:19 shares, “We love because he (God) first loved us.” As we come to All Saints Sunday this week, let us reflect on all the people living and deceased who have loved us into being our better selves. L is for ……, O is for ……, V is for ……, and E is for ……. Blessings.