Jesus be my Valentine!
Sunday February 14 was a very special day for Catholic Christians. Father Valentine was a Catholic priest who was murdered on February 14, 270 A.D. under the reign of Emperor Claudius II. He promoted the sacrament of marriage at a time when pagan Rome promoted fornication and sexual immorality amongst young people. The Emperor also prohibited the sacrament of marriage because Rome was embroiled in many wars. Married men did not want to go fight and die for Rome senseless wars. The Emperor asked Fr Valentine to abandon Christianity but he refused. He was jailed and from his cell he wrote letters that said: “Remember your Valentine”, pigeons would take the letters and drop them over the city of Rome. Father Valentine was sentenced to death because he was promoting authentic marriage which is intended by God to be faithful, freely entered into, fruitful and permanent. Father Valentine was beaten with clubs then he was stoned and finally he was beheaded.
While it is not harmful for us to enjoy the day with non-religious activities it is important that we do not lose sight of the fact that Valentine’s Day is a religious festival. The heart is a favorite emblem of the Catholic Church, it is traditionally believed to be the center of all emotions and feelings, we Catholics have a special devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, the heart that throbs with love for everyone of us sinners, the heart that burst with love for us on Calvary.
May I recommend that on St Valentine’s Day we conscientiously make the heart of Jesus Christ the center of our home and marriages.
Yes, send cards and flowers and gifts to your loved one, but don’t forget that Jesus Sacred Heart would like to be your Valentine.
To my Lord I say today and always - “Jesus be my Valentine.”