A. Valentine’s Day: the busiest day of the year for chocolate stores and flower shops.
B. After preparing for two weeks at work, I started thinking about why we celebrate this day in the first place.
C. The origins, development, and current status of the holiday may surprise you.
A. The origins of the holiday may surprise you.
i. According to the Catholic Encyclopedia, there are three Saints listed in the martyrologies under the name of Valentine.
a. He lived in Rome under the reign of Emperor Claudius II.
b. Valentine performed weddings after Claudius II outlawed marriage.
c. He was imprisoned and beheaded in 270 A.D.
d. Before he left, he wrote the jailer’s daughter a letter and signed it “From your Valentine.”
ii. According to William Dunstan’s, an expert on ancient Rome and Greece, book Ancient Rome, the Lupercalia was celebrated on the 15th of February every year.
a. The Lupercalia was a fertility feast dedicated to Faunus, Romulus, and Remus.
b. Two young men would sacrifice a goat, soak the skin in the blood, and run through the town in only a goatskin loincloth hitting young women with the skins to make them more fertile.
c. The Society for the Confluence of Festivals in India’s St. Valentine’s Day website says that another tradition was for young women to put their names in a pot, and young men to draw a name to see who they were paired with that year.
iii. Pope Gelasius replaced the Lupercalia with St. Valentine’s Day.
B. Equally as surprising as the origin is...