A Valentine’s Day History Lesson

February has gotten the reputation of being the month of love.  Valentine’s Days falls in this month.  I found an interesting article online at www.nytimes.com/2017/02/14/style/valentines-day-facts-history.html. Below are some excerpts from that article:

Valentine’s Day: Did It Start as a Roman Party or to Celebrate an Execution?

According to one popular tale, printed in The Boston Globe in 1965, St. Valentine
was arrested after he defied an order by Emperor Claudius that forbade Roman soldiers from getting married.

St. Valentine was later beheaded for his religious zeal, a death that Roman
men decided to celebrate by pulling the names of eligible young ladies out
of an urn. “This custom persisted for many years and eventually found its
way into Germany and England,” The Globe reported.

The most common explanation for how Valentine’s Day came to be is the
ancient festival of Lupercalia, a raucous, wine-fueled fertility rite in which
Roman men and women paired off. This theory has appeared in news
articles for decades.

Lupercalia was celebrated for centuries in the middle of February and
eventually, as the Roman Empire became less pagan and more Christian,
was transformed into a celebration honoring St. Valentine.

Whatever its origins, Valentine’s Day is now a big deal.

It can be stressful for some people because “it’s a night with very profound
extra meaning that hits primitive parts of the brain linked with wanting,” said Helen Fisher, a Rutgers University physical anthropologist who studies the evolution of human sexuality.

She said the need for love was “a basic brain system that evolved millions
of years ago,” long before Lupercalia.

“It’s a time of self-appraisal and appraisal of your situation,” she said,
especially if you’re single. “This is a day when one reflects on what you’ve
got and what you don’t have.”

What is the most interesting to me in this article is the quote from Helen
Fisher. “The need for love was a basic brain system that evolved millions of
years ago.”

I don’t think our brains evolved a need for love. I think we were created
by our Father and Creator to love and to be loved. Genesis says “God
created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them
(Genesis 1:27). And 1 John 4:9 says, “God is love.” We were created to be
loved, to love God, and to love one another. This is something worth
celebrating!

See you at the church!
Pastor Stef

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