Season of the Church Year: Great Green Growing Season/ Common Time (green)
Story in Scripture: 1 Corinthians 13
With Valentine’s Day around the corner, we took some time today to tell the real story of the man named Valentino, who lived and died in ancient Rome. Valentino was a Doctor and a Priest, but he had to pray and worship in secret because it was illegal at the time to be a Christian. As a physician, he cared for all his patients and prayed for their healing. He befriended a little girl and her father, who was the local jailer. The girl had been blind from birth and Valentino did what he could to alleviate her discomfort, though he had little hope that she would be healed and ever have sight. When he was later arrested and placed in jail for his beliefs, he passed a secret note to the little girl’s father. It said, “From your Valentine” and rolled up inside was a crocus flower. Valentino had fond memories of gathering crocuses and medicinal herbs with the girl, so this symbolic gesture demonstrated his care for her. Although Valentino was later taken away for be killed, the jailer gave the note to his daughter. Miraculously, when she opened this first “Valentine,” she was able to see the flower and the words written by Valentino. She was healed! What an incredible story of love and friendship. Even though the true meaning of this special day is often lost in the hub bub of red hearts, candy, and romantic sentiments, I encourage you to talk with your child about how we can show care and thoughtfulness to others, just like Saint Valentine did. He showed compassion and integrity as Jesus has modeled for us.
Guiding Questions for Discussion:
Now I wonder what parts of Valentine’s story you like the best? Which part is the most important?
I wonder how it felt for the little girl’s father to see what happened?
I wonder what the little girl and her father will do now?
I wonder what other people in Rome will think when they see that the little girl has been healed?
I wonder if we could leave out any part of the story and still have all the story that we need?
I wonder what the story of Valentine can teach us about loving others?
I wonder how we can show our friends and family and we love them?
“Dear God, thank you for the example of Valentine. Help us to show love and care for our neighbors just as he did. We pray for healing for those who are sick or injured. We know that you have the power to make all people well. We love you and trust that we are in your care. Amen.”