St. Valentine

Today is St. Valentine’s day. Note it is spelled Valentine and not Valentimes as so often pronounced. How I remember as a child writing out the little valentines that I would bring to school on this day and each of us had a lunch bag on the front of our desk and we would place them in the bag for each kid. Some would get more, and some would get less. Then we would have a party. We liked parties in school. I went to a very small elementary school and we were all from the same neighborhood so we all knew each other. Those were the days, but I digress.

On his great blog, Fr. Greg posts about this and says that we Orthodox celebrate this day on July 6th. Well I cannot find any reference to this on my usual sources, namley the calendar at So short of that I do a little search and I found a wikipedia article about this saint.

In the Eastern Orthodox Church, Saint Valentine the Presbyter, is celebrated on 6 July, and Hieromartyr Saint Valentine (Bishop of Interamna, Terni in Italy) is celebrated on 30 July.

So the Orthodox have two different saints that bear this name. I am sure there are many more but we will stick with these two to keep things easy. I am still a little sick and need to keep things easy right now.

The Catholic Encyclopedia has an article on the same two Saints that have the name Valentine and also a little history of how this saints feast day becasue used by lovers to celebrate their love.

The popular customs associated with Saint Valentine’s Day undoubtedly had their origin in a conventional belief generally received in England and France during the Middle Ages, that on 14 February, i.e. half way through the second month of the year, the birds began to pair.

The article continues:

For this reason the day was looked upon as specially consecrated to lovers and as a proper occasion for writing love letters and sending lovers’ tokens. Both the French and English literatures of the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries contain allusions to the practice.

I think that on the day after we should celebrate the saint for those who will be in the dog house for not remembering to bring home flowers or candy on this day. But we shall save that for another day.
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