Once again, tradition innovation and invention enters the realm of religion. Saint-Valentine, the supposed patron saint of lovers, right… Completely false! As far as we know, he was a Christian bishop during the Roman empire and was martyred in the 3rd century. The date of his death was supposedly on February 14th.
Alright, but there must have been some kind of story or romance in his life that led to all these tales that we have been accustomed to on Valentine’s day? No! The martyrdom of Saint Valentine was to be celebrated as a feast since the time of pope Gelasius I at the end of the 5th century. That’s it, that’s all. And it stayed like that till the 14th century.
Fast forward to 1382, and this is when everything jumps the rails. The poet Geoffrey Chaucer composed the Parlement of Foules (Parliament of Fowls, but I think Fools sounds better) which brought forth all the connotation that we have been accustomed to Valentine’s day.
So, if you are still set on celebrating Valentine’s day, have a feast to commemorate someone who preached Christianity in the Roman Empire, destroyed false idols, was sentenced to death for evangelizing his surroundings, and refused to revert to paganism on the order of the Roman Emperor of the time Claudius II. Oh yeah, Saint Valentine was the patron saint of epileptics and beekeepers… Well honey’s kind of a sweet nickname!?!