I’m pleased to announce Julie Miller of Indianapolis, IN as the winner of our gift bag filled with a few goodies, including a bottle of wine paired with a Spicing Up Married Life recipe.
Now that Valentine’s Day has passed TV commercials and advertisements will no doubt be promoting the next big holiday – Easter! As usual, the world will want to skip Lent and show only the “fluffy” aspects about Easter devoid of the Christian message of the Resurrection and the conquering of sin and death.
|The High Altar. St. Stephen Church, New Orleans, LA.|
For Catholics, Christians, and everyone who believes in God, we can relish our liturgical seasons and realize that when God is present, we can celebrate love for each other every day – not just February 14th! And even though Easter is still a long ways away, with God we can still celebrate the Resurrection of the Lord each Sunday, and indeed at every Mass.
|Christ conquers the temptation of Satan in the desert.|
But, as timing had it, I didn’t really have a good chance to delve into the cultural issues surrounding Valentine’s Day or provide a catechism about the happy feast day. I talked a lot about Valentine’s Day on my weekly Radio Show, “Entertaining Truth” on SiriusXM 129, the Catholic Channel. But instead of giving some catechism about that happy feast day, our Grace Before Meals movement offered a drawing for a “Valentine Day gift.”
While our team is very excited about this opportunity to share with our subscribers, I can’t believe I almost missed an opportunity to catechize about Saint Valentine. Thank God one of our subscribers, Fr. Coyle, a missionary priest in the Philippines, sent me an e-mail to offer the perfect reminder, fraternal correction, and catechism notes. And even though we’re sending this information a week late, remember, God’s love is not limited to one day of the year.
Dear Father Leo,
Greetings again from Bacolod City.
Central to your wonderful ministry as a priest is the strengthening of marriage and the family. But you are missing a golden opportunity to make that more effective by promoting ‘Valentine’s Day’ instead of ‘SAINT Valentine’s Day’.
The Irish Carmelite Friars (OCarm), who were given relics of St. Valentine by Pope Gregory XVI, have a shrine in his honor at their church in Dublin. They have a webpage devoted to him. The page includes a link to the Liturgy for the Feast of St. Valentine.
I have been trying to promote awareness of St. Valentine for some years now on my blog, finding the material of the Carmelites very helpful, e.g., here and here. I’ve also tried to promote him on Misyon, the online magazine of the Columbans in the Philippines of which I’m editor.
A diocesan priest martyred by the Emperor Claudius in 269 or 270 for officiating at weddings: surely a witness desperately needed today when marriage is under attack and when so many priests have led people astray.
Let’s put the SAINT back into SAINT Valentine’s Day!
(Fr) Sean Coyle
Thanks Fr. Coyle, for the brotherly reminder to include holiness in our human love, i.e., SAINT Valentine! More importantly, thanks for giving me a chance to share your wonderful and insightful e-mail and encouragement to all of our subscribers. It’s great to know of your missionary work in the Philippines and the faith you share with me in our “digital missionary world”!
|An icon of St. Valentine.|
CORRECTION from Last Week’s eBlast: The title of last week’s blog mistakenly refers to CRS Rice Bowl as “Operation Rice Bowl”, which is an outdated title for the program. Be sure to check out Fr. Leo’s video in case you missed it.
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Let us pray:
Through the intercession of St. Valentine, may we continue our Lenten Pilgrimage, offering ourselves as “witnesses” (i.e., martyrs) of God’s love. May our remembrance of the commemoration of St. Valentine keep us focused on the true source of love, Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns forever and ever. Amen.
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