We don’t often think about St. Valentine as an actual saint, certainly not in our consumerist driven society. After all, there isn’t much of a way to make Christian martyrdom a consumer good, excepting, perhaps, creating and selling trinkets relating to someone who might be a martyr, as happened (at least for a time) in the case of a young girl who died in the Columbine shooting. I’m not saying we couldn’t make a consumer good from your death. We already do that to some degree with funerals and with the death of the unborn and there is a black market for organs, unfortunately. It can be done. My point is simply that Christian martyrdom itself is not a big seller. Certainly, cute pink hearts are sappier and happier.
That said, one should not think I am against giving “Valentines” or love or showing affection and dedication. To the contrary, I am in support of love and Valentines can be cute. I just think it’s also worth reflecting on examples of those who loved God so much that they were willing to give their lives for him, an act that is in Thanksgiving for Jesus having given his life for us. For taking on our humanity, he filled it with his divinity and granted healing to all.
So, here’s some good reading for St. Valentine’s Day: