A reflection on St. Valentine’s Day for Catholic families including 3 types of Christian Inspired Valentine’s Day Cards!
Today, St. Valentine’s Day is a day flooded with chocolate, heart-shaped decorations, red roses and greeting cards. It’s become a day of expressing tokens of love and sharing signs of affection.
You’ll often find parents booking a babysitter for a date night and students eagerly exchanging cards at school.
A day set aside to share love is a pretty great thing but even better, it is a wonderful opportunity for Catholic families to teach their children about the Saints—in particular St. Valentine.
The holiday began as Saint Valentine’s feast day, which means its original purpose was to celebrate Christian love and devotion to Christ. In the case of St. Valentine, love even in the face of death and martyrdom.
Ironically, in 1969, the Roman Catholic Church removed St. Valentine from the General Roman Calendar, because so little is known about him. However, the church still recognizes him as a Saint, listing him in the February 14 spot of Roman Martyrology.
Who exactly was St. Valentine? Early Christian sources speak of three different men who went by that name. The most popular of the three was a priest who comforted Christian martyrs during the persecution of Emperor Claudius II. Eventually, he was martyred, too, beheaded around 270 AD.
Later, various stories and traditions developed around the devotion to St. Valentine. Most notably, he helped Christian soldiers get married in spite of a law forbidding Roman soldiers being married. This is one of the popular explanations for the feast day’s association with romantic love.
St Valentine is the patron Saint of engaged couples, against fainting, beekeepers, happy marriages, love, mentally ill, plague, and epilepsy.
What’s the takeaway for Catholic families? Regardless of the details of St. Valentine’s life, he was one of many Saints and Christians who valued Christ’s love even above their own lives.
Yes, it’s fun to celebrate friendship and romantic love on St. Valentine’s day. It’s also important to recognize the Christian belief that God’s selfless, generous, life-giving love is the standard against which all other forms of love are measured.
Valentine’s Day is a chance to reiterate this rare love that the Catholic Church is built off of. It’s a chance to share with your children ways in which we see this type of love; through caring for our neighbors, sharing with our siblings, and being brave in proclaiming our faith even when it’s unpopular.
An act of Christian love, although not always as obvious as flowers, candies, and cards, is the most important kind of love to recognize on this St. Valentine’s Day.
Have a little fun with the tradition of passing out cards by using these 3 Christian-inspired Valentine’s Day cards. What a great way to keep “Saint” in St. Valentine’s Day!
3 Christian Valentine’s Day Cards
- Scripture inspired love notes at Faith and Fabric Design
- Scripture Valentines from Real Life at Home
- Saint Valentine cards from Catholic Icing (pictured)