The story of St. Valentine

Posted: February 14, 2011 in Feel-Good, Short Story
Tags: , ,

The rose is red, the violet’s blue
The honey’s sweet, and so are you
Thou are my love and I am thine
I drew thee to my Valentine
The lot was cast and then I drew
And Fortune said it shou’d be you

From the collection of English nursery rhymes Gammer Gurton’s Garland (1784)

Today, 14th February, is Valentine’s Day, or more appropriately, Saint Valentine’s Day.

I would like to share with you one of the most beautiful love stories of all time.  If you have heard of or read about this story, let us hear and read this again.

Note there are one or more versions of this story and here’s one of them…

The Story of St. Valentine

Let me introduce myself. My name is Valentine. I lived in Rome during the third century. That was long, long ago! At that time, Rome was ruled by an emperor named Claudius (the second). I didn’t like Emperor Claudius, and I wasn’t the only one! A lot of people shared my feelings.

Claudius wanted to have a big army. He expected men to volunteer to join. Many men just did not want to fight in wars. They did not want to leave their wives and families. As you might have guessed, not many men signed up. This made Claudius furious. So what happened? He had a crazy idea. He thought that if men were not married, they would not mind joining the army. So Claudius decided not to allow any more marriages. Young people thought his new law was cruel. I thought it was preposterous! I certainly wasn’t going to support that law!

Did I mention that I was a priest? One of my favorite activities was to marry couples. Even after Emperor Claudius passed his law, I kept on performing marriage ceremonies — secretly, of course. It was really quite exciting. Imagine a small candlelit room with only the bride and groom and myself. We would whisper the words of the ceremony, listening all the while for the steps of soldiers.

One night, we did hear footsteps. It was scary! Thank goodness the couple I was marrying escaped in time. I was caught. (Not quite as light on my feet as I used to be, I guess.) I was thrown in jail and told that my punishment was death.

I tried to stay cheerful. And do you know what? Wonderful things happened. Many young people came to the jail to visit me. They threw flowers and notes up to my window. They wanted me to know that they, too, believed in love.

One of these young people was the daughter of the prison guard. Her father allowed her to visit me in the cell. Sometimes we would sit and talk for hours. She helped me to keep my spirits up. She agreed that I did the right thing by ignoring the Emperor and going ahead with the secret marriages. On the day I was to die, I left my friend a little note thanking her for her friendship and loyalty. I signed it, “Love from your Valentine.”

I believe that note started the custom of exchanging love messages on Valentine’s Day. It was written on the day I died, February 14, 269 A.D. Now, every year on this day, people remember. But most importantly, they think about love and friendship. And when they think of Emperor Claudius II, they remember how he tried to stand in the way of love, and they laugh – because they know that love cannot be beaten!

St. Valentine was beaten, stoned, and then finally decapitated (beheaded) in Rome on the same day that has been devoted to love.  In 496 A.D. Pope Gelasius I proclaimed February 14 to be the feast day in honour of St. Valentine.

Holiday for lovers?

While Valentine’s Day is not a holiday in most countries of the world, it is a day declared a holiday for lovers, the romantics, the Romeos and Juliets of this millennium. Valentine’s Day has become a b(l)ooming commercial success in every nook and cranny of the globe. According to the Greeting Card Association, 25% of all cards each year are Valentine-related cards! 14th February has also become a popular choice for weddings and proposals or marriage.

Hey there, Romeos and Juliets, what are you waiting for? Today is THE day to court your love with a tender letter, poem or private gift.

Now, now, what about myself? Well, for starters, my DH is not a romantic person, so I do not expect a lot from him ;-(

Flowers? Uh-uh. Well, probably it’s all written on my face. I’m not a green thumbed lover. LOL!

Going to the movies?  Oh what a cliché.  We did that during our courtship phase and now we have logged out of that sphere.

Candlelight dinner for two? For Pete’s sake, 14th February is a Monday and a weekday and the first day of the work week! Our busy work schedules will never accommodate this candlelight dinner!

Something else? Erm…wait a minute, I DID get something else.  Life is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you’re gonna get.  Nope, I did NOT get a box of chocolates but I got this ….

The message was loud and clear!

By the way, what did you get on St.Valentine’s Day?

No worries if you did not get anything, here’s a love story for you from Taylor Swift.  Happy karaoke-ing!

I wish you a cherubic and seraphic day!

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Comments
  1. dada says:

    i didm1’t get any valentine gifts. How big is the cake? It looks good. As usual, mobile flower operators are at evry corner in kch but the price is real catchy..abt rm20 per/stock of rose. Yes very xpensv indeed. Tomorrow is a public holiday in msia..prophet’s bday.
    Cheers and happy valentines day to u.

  2. Nasifriet says:

    The cake was just the right size for our fam of 4 – for 6 people maybe? So there were extra 2 pieces for you know who? Yeah, I’m sure flowers (esp roses) are everywhere at V-day. Oh BTW, M did buy me a pot of red rose buds as well 😉 They will only start to bloom after V-day… 🙂
    Chap Goh Meh is also round the corner, 18th Feb – the Chinese Valentine’s day and just a day after your B-day 🙂 What’s on your agenda?

  3. Chris says:

    Hi Nasifriet!

    Happy Belated Valentine’s Day! We didn’t do anything either…like you said, it’s a weekday after all. Hubby just wanted to get home after his work day…no chocolates or flowers here. 😀 Instead of fancy dinner or dessert (which yours look mouth-watering by the way), we had roast beef sandwich for dinner – tender, well-seasoned roast beef on lightly toasted french bread that has been slathered with a mayo-mustard spread, topped with cheddar cheese, caramelized onions, and lettuce…OMG, we were little piggies last night! LOL!

  4. Chris says:

    Oh wait…I did help Alex make a lovey-dovey Valentine’s Day card for Hubby…that’s my contribution to Hubby’s gift. ;-D

  5. Nasifriet says:

    Yum yum…. your V-day sure sounds mouthwatering. Was the dinner (roast beef sandwich) bought or self-made. I hope it’s the latter, so you could post that in your blog 😛

    Hey, Happy belated Valentine’s Day to you, too.

  6. Nasifriet says:

    Ohh…..how lovey-dovey can that be. Your Alex is a cutie 🙂

  7. Chris says:

    The roast beef was store-bought but we made the sandwiches ourselves. Will blog about it one of these days. 😀

  8. Nasifriet says:

    I can’t wait to read your home-made sandwiches 🙂

  9. dada says:

    chap goh mei falls on my b-day..and it’s also known as chinese valentine’s day. We’l be celebrating the cgm n my bday at rokrod cfud. I’v also invtd u and family but to bad u can’t make it. Perhaps anothr yr. K wil b celebrtng his bday soon on d 28th. I miss u all vry much. Take care che.

  10. Nasifriet says:

    Happy sweet sixteen to you tomorrow, Da 🙂 OMG, I miss the seafood at rock road. Think of me when you’re diving into the O chien, chilli crabs, buttered prawns, fishlip soup, steamed garoupa……DROOOOOOOOLLINGGGG!!

    Yeah K’s b’day is round the corner, too, however, he’ll be spending 4 days away at sport camp on his birthday, 28th Feb onwards… So will probably celebrate a small do on Sunday, 27th feb. We went to a Lebanese resto 2 weekends ago, and it was fab. Will post pics and story soon…

  11. Thanks for sharing the story of St. Valentine. Happy Belated valentine’s Day!

  12. MaryMoh says:

    Lovely Valentine’s post. Thanks very much for sharing the valentine’s story…so sad ending 😦 Love the cake. It looks very beautiful and delicious.

  13. Nasifriet says:

    Thanks, Mary. Yeah, a sad ending for St V, but a rekindling beginning for us, mortals 😉
    My cake was beautiful but nothing compared to yours. I left a msg on your post (birthday), but I think it did not get thru’, otherwise, I’m wishing you a belated V-day (14th Feb) and birthday on 16th Feb. Your birthday bash was just amazing. I’m sure the rainbow tells alot about your personality 🙂

  14. […] Here’s a story worth reading – The Story of St Valentine […]

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