Happy feast day of St. Valentine, priest and martyr, to all of you. I get a kick out of the new calendar on many days, but this is definitely one of them. One of the great traits of the Church is her ability to sanctify and elevate the merely pagan or secular “holiday”. In history, this usually takes place in the changing of a pagan feast day to a Catholic one, such as on Christmas or Easter, when a feast of the Son of God occurs to eclipse a previously pagan observance.
St. Valentine’s Day marks the opposite process. A Catholic feast day for nearly two millenia, celebrating the Charity of Christ as it shone forth in the life and martyrdom of an early Roman priest, it became co-opted to some extent by secular notions of romantic love (at best) or lust (at worst).
For some reason, those architects of the new Calendar of the Church decided to cede the field, eliminating the feast of St. Valentine so that the chance of most people, and perhaps even most Catholics, to know the origins and purpose of the day would be minimal. Great idea. So, most Catholics wake up today and, if they go to Mass, celebrate the Feast of the very worthy Saints Cyril and Methodius, whose feast day on the traditional Calendar is July 7.
Whatever the case, may the Charity of St. Valentine animate all of our actions and thoughts, to serve the Lord Who deserves all our love.
As an aside, Valentine’s Day started with a bang for Sharon and me. There may be more romantic ways to mark the occasion, but perhaps nothing gives an example of St. Valentine’s charity than spending the hours of 2 to 4 am cleaning up vomit from the person of a toddler, her clothes, bed, pillow, bedclothes, wall, door and floor.
And then doing it all again twenty minutes later.
That really brought us together, I tell you.
As the title of the post indicates, there is much to post today, so stay tuned.