Submitted Commentary - For the Love of Valentine’s Day: Not Just One Day … But For Life.

Feb 10, 2023 at 11:00 am by Paulette Jackson

LOVE - Submitted Commentary by Paulette Jackson: For those of us who may not be familiar with the beginnings of St. Valentine’s Day, it was a feast day in the Catholic religion, added to the liturgical calendar around 500 AD. The day was commemorated for martyred saints named, Valentine.

While not much is known about the real history of the Saint Valentines, his legend has several tellings. One legend says that Saint Valentine refused to convert to paganism and was executed by Roman Emperor Claudius II. Prior to his execution, he was able to miraculously heal the daughter of his jailer, who then converted to Christianity along with his family. 

Another way Saint Valentine became affiliated with a love-focused holiday, was that as a Saint, and Roman priest, he could perform weddings for soldiers forbidden to marry – because the Roman emperor’s edict decreeing married soldiers did not make good warriors and thus could not marry. But, Saint Valentine wore a ring with a Cupid on it—a symbol of love—that helped soldiers recognize him. And, in a precursor to greeting cards, he handed out paper hearts to remind Christians of their love for God.

Because of this legend, Saint Valentine became known as the patron saint of love. The prayer of Saint Valentine, asks for lovers to connect together, so that two become one, and remember their devotion to God.

While the Saint Valentine story set the groundwork for establishing the day as a holiday for romantic love, what truly solidified the connection between Saint Valentine and love was a poem by medieval author Geoffrey Chaucer in 1375, which historians consider the origin of the “modern” celebration of Valentine’s Day.

The Parlement of Fowls 
~ Geoffrey Chaucer

Now welcome, somer, with thy sonne softe, 

That hast this wintres wedres overshake, 
And driven away the longe nyghtes blake! 
Saynt Valentyn, that art ful hy on-lofte, 

Thus syngen smale foules for thy sake:  
Now welcome, somer, with thy sonne softe, 
That hast this wintres wedres overshake. 
Wel han they cause for to gladen ofte, 
Sith ech of hem recovered hath hys make; 

Ful blissful mowe they synge when they wake: 
Now welcome, somer, with thy sonne softe 
That hast this wintres wedres overshake 
And driven away the longe nyghtes blake!

I appreciate, very much the legend of St. Valentine, bringing to light, of the love of God, into the lives of ordinary people. And while our culture recognizes Valentines’ Day, maybe we could follow St. Valentine, and bring the light of the love of God, to the lives of ordinary people as well.

While Valentine’s Day is generally celebrated on February 14th, I have recently experienced, the light of the love of God, being brought to individuals, whose lives have been challenged, and have seen God’s presence in their lives, making a loving difference: 

  1. A young child, having seizures, since the beginning of January, is in good hands at a Children’s Hospital. The child is making very good progress and we pray for healing. 
  2. A newborn with some concern, diligently watched by doctors, as well as loved dearly by parents and family.

And for all of those who may honor St. Valentine, as a bringer of the light of the love of God, we might also reflect on William Shakespear’s Sonnet 116, who also brings the love of God to the gift of his poetry:


Sonnet 116
Love is not love
Which alters when it alteration finds,
Or bends with the remover to remove.
O no! it is an ever-fixed mark
That looks on tempests and is never shaken;
It is the star to every wand’ring bark…
Whose worth's unknown, although his height be taken.

Love's not Time's fool, though rosy lips and cheeks
Within his bending sickle's compass come;
Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,
But bears it out even to the edge of doom.
If this be error and upon me proved,
I never writ, nor no man ever loved.

Wishing everyone the gift of Valentine’s Day, and the love of God…not just for one day, but for life.
-The Conversant Counselor

The thoughts and intentions expressed in The Conversant Counselor’s Blog are those belonging to The Conversant Counselor and do not necessarily reflect those of any other individual or professional.

Photo credit: The Spruce Craft Project 

  1. UNC: College of Arts and Sciences

Submitted to the MurfreesboroVoice by Paulette Jackson