YBTC News-Valentine’s Day, also called Saint Valentine’s Day or the Feast of Saint Valentine,is celebrated annually on February 14. It originated as a Western Christian feast day honoring one or two early saints named Valentinus and is recognized as a significant cultural, religious, and commercial celebration of romance and love in many regions of the world.
There are numerous martyrdom stories associated with various Valentines connected to February 14,including an account of the imprisonment of Saint Valentine of Rome for performing weddings for soldiers who were forbidden to marry and for ministering to Christians persecuted under the Roman Empire. According to tradition, Saint Valentine restored sight to the blind daughter of his judge,and he wrote her a letter signed “Your Valentine” as a farewell before his execution.The Feast of Saint Valentine was established by Pope Gelasius I in AD 496 to be celebrated on February 14 in honour of Saint Valentine of Rome, who died on that date in AD 269.
The day became associated with romantic love within the circle of Geoffrey Chaucer in the 14th century, when the notions of courtly love flourished. In 18th-century England, it grew into an occasion in which couples expressed their love for each other by presenting flowers, offering confectionery, and sending greeting cards (known as “valentines”). Valentine’s Day symbols that are used today include the heart-shaped outline, doves, and the figure of the winged Cupid. Since the 19th century, handwritten valentines have given way to mass-produced greeting cards.In Europe, Saint Valentine’s Keys are given to lovers “as a romantic symbol and an invitation to unlock the giver’s heart”, as well as to children to ward off epilepsy (called Saint Valentine’s Malady).
Saint Valentine’s Day is not a public holiday in any country, although it is an official feast day in the Anglican Communion and the Lutheran Church. Many parts of the Eastern Orthodox Church also celebrate Saint Valentine’s Day on July 6 in honor of Roman presbyter Saint Valentine, and on July 30 in honor of Hieromartyr Valentine, the Bishop of Interamna (modern Terni).