On this page:
- Historic background
- St. Valentine Prayer
- Children's Message: Love
- 2 Sermons
Historic background of Valentines Day:
The legend of St. Valentine stems from real-life martyrs from the Roman Empire
known as Valentines. It is unsure who was the St. Valentine; there are at least
two candidates: One of them is believed to have been a Roman priest and
physician killed in the third century, during the persecutions of the Emperor
Claudius II Gothicus. After his death this Valentine was apparently buried in
the Roman road Via Flaminia. Pope Julius I is said to have later built a
basilica above his grave. A second St. Valentine candidate believed to be a
bishop of Teni who was also executed in Rome.
These men’s status comes from legends of harboring Christians from persecution,
curing the blindness of a cell keeper’s daughter, and conducting Christian
marriages while they were forbidden by the government. It is perhaps this last
repute that made St. Valentine the patron saint of lovers.
Great Valentine's Day Prayer
(from a church wall in Mexico)
Give us, Senior, a little sun, a little
happiness, and some work.
Give us a heart to comfort those in pain.
Give us the ability to be good, strong, wise, and free,
so that we may be as generous with others as we are with ourselves.
Finally, Senior, let us all live as your own one family. Amen.
More Worship Resources:
Love Got to Do With It?
a message based on Valentine's Day;
John 13:34-35; Mat 5:23-24
by F. Schaefer
"A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you
must love one another. By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if
you love one another." John 13:34-35
Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that
your brother has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the
altar. First go and be reconciled to your brother; then come and offer your
gift. Mat 5:23-24
I must be getting old(er), because I honestly don’t remember Valentine’s Day to
be such a big deal when I was growing up. I’ve heard it said that the chocolate
and flower retailers were responsible for making this holiday as prominent as it
is today. Be that as it may I think it’s a wonderful idea to have a designated
day for the celebration of romantic love.
Let’s not forget that romantic love too is a gift from God. The New Testament
words for love are philios (“brotherly love”), agape, (“divine love”) and eros
(“romantic love”)—the latter being just as much part of God’s gifts and graces
than the former two. Yet, we often feel funny about even mentioning romance in
church. Heaven forbid we should hear the s _ _ word in a sermon. . .
Valentine’s Day could easily be claimed
as a Christian holiday. I think most people are aware of the fact that
Valentine’s Day has roots in Christian popular celebration of God’s gift of
romantic love. St. Valentine is the patron Saint of lovers and as legend has it,
he was a priest who performed secret marriage ceremonies in Rome when Christian
marriages were unlawful. One night Valentine was caught, thrown in jail and
sentenced to die. But many young people came to the jail to visit him. They
threw flowers and notes up to his window. After his execution a note was found
in his cell addressed to a friend which he had signed with “Love from your
Valentine.” This is a Christian legend, but as we know, every legend has roots
in some historic truth.
I for one want to make a case for using Valentine’s Day as an opportunity today
to speak about romantic love and love in general. We need to remember that if we
don’t teach about romantic love in church, our kids will learn about it “on the
street.” We could simply miss our chance to tell God’s side of the story.
What is God’s side of the story?
Traditionally, Christians have made a strong point about sexual relationships
belonging into a committed, lasting relationship. And that certainly is not only
a good spiritual principle, but it also appeals to one’s common-sense, knowing
the emotional pain that usually follows when two lovers break up.....
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