February 14th

Called the most romantic day of the year, St. Valentine’s Day is the holiday for all people in love. Shops get ready with roses, sweets and small romantic gifts. People send valentines  –  little love messages. The first valentines were sent in the 1800’s.

There are different romantic traditions around the world. In South Africa, women pin the names of the men they love on the sleeve. In the Philippines, there are mass wedding ceremonies where thousands of couples are married at shopping malls or in other public places. And in South Korea they celebrate love on the 14th every month – with roses in May, kisses in June, silver rings in July, photos and music in September, for example. On 14 April all singles eat black noodles and hope to find a lover by the next year.

  • What do people give their loved ones on St. Valentine’s Day?
  • Where do South African women wear the names of their loved ones?
  • What do people in the Philippines do on this day?

Who was St. Valentine?

Legend says that St. Valentine was a Christian priest who lived in the 3rd century. The Roman emperor Claudius wanted to build a big army. Soldiers didn’t want to leave their families, so the emperor forbade them to marry. St. Valentine helped the soldiers get married secretly. St. Valentine was put in jail. He was killed on February 14, 269 A.D. On this day, we remember St. Valentine and celebrate love.