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Valentine's Day is just around the corner! This love-filled holiday of chocolate and roses originated as a Western Christian feast day honoring Saint Valentine of Rome, a 3rd-century saint. For over 1500 years, Valentine's Day is still recognized as a significant cultural, religious, and commercial celebration of romance and love in many regions around the world.
In the spirit of St. Valentine, we've come up with the perfect way to show the Conservative in your love life just how much you really care! Give them a bag of delicious chocolate-infused dark roast coffee with a special message straight from the heart: "I would never deport you!"
ABOUT ST. VALENTINE:
There are many legends behind Saint Valentine. One is that in the 3rd century AD, it is said that the priest Valentine defied the order of the emperor Claudius and secretly performed Christian weddings for couples. The account mentions that in order "to remind these men of their vows and God's love, Saint Valentine is said to have cut hearts from parchment", giving them to these soldiers and persecuted Christians, a possible origin of the widespread use of hearts on St. Valentine's Day.
Another common hagiography describes Saint Valentine as a priest of Rome or as the former Bishop of Terni, an important town of Umbria, in central Italy. While under house arrest of Judge Asterius, and discussing his faith with him, Valentinus (the Latin version of his name) was discussing the validity of Jesus. The judge put Valentinus to the test and brought to him the judge's adopted blind daughter. If Valentinus succeeded in restoring the girl's sight, Asterius would do whatever he asked. Valentinus, praying to God, laid his hands on her eyes and the child's vision was restored. Immediately humbled, the judge asked Valentinus what he should do. Valentinus replied that all of the idols around the judge's house should be broken, and that the judge should fast for three days and then undergo the Christian sacrament of baptism. The judge obeyed and, as a result, freed all the Christian inmates under his authority. The judge, his family, and his forty-four member household (family members and servants) were baptized. Valentinus was later arrested again for continuing to evangelize and was sent to the prefect of Rome, to the emperor Claudius Gothicus (Claudius II) himself. Claudius took a liking to him until Valentinus tried to convince Claudius to embrace Christianity, whereupon Claudius refused and condemned Valentinus to death, commanding that Valentinus either renounce his faith or he would die. Valentinus refused and Claudius' command was executed outside the Flaminian Gate February 14, 269.
An embellishment to this account states that before his execution, Saint Valentine wrote a note to Asterius's daughter signed "from your Valentine," which is said to have "inspired today's romantic missives".