Tuesday 14 February 2012

St. Valentine

The Legend of St. Valentine

St. Valentine, or Valentinus as he was known in Roman times, was an early Christian in Umbria, Italy.  While under house arrest for his beliefs, he met and befriended his jailer, Judge Asterius.  Valentinus shared his faith in God and in Jesus Christ with the judge whereupon the latter asked him to heal his blind daughter.  Valentinus laid hands on the girl and her sight was restored.  Judge Asterius, who had promised Valentinus that he would do anything he wished if he healed his daughter, broke the idols he worshipped, fasted for three days and then was baptized along with 40 other Romans.  Valentinus was later released, only to be jailed again for his beliefs, this time being sent to Emperor Claudius.  The ruler liked Valentinus until the latter started discussing his Christian faith whereupon Claudius told him to renounce Jesus or be executed.  Valentinus refused, was beaten and executed on February 14, 269.  Apparently, he left a note for the jailer's daughter signed "From Your Valentine".  In 496, Pope Gelasius set aside February 14 to honour Saint Valentine.

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