Valentines Day is the day Saint Valentine was executed in 278 AD. One way you can celebrate Valentine’s Day with your students is to tell the story of Saint Valentine.
Saint Valentine was a priest and a bishop, and was martyred in Rome under Claudius II and buried on February 14th. The story of his life has some great applications you can use with your students.
Valentine was born in Rome during the third century. He was a priest and then a bishop. During that time, the emperor of Rome, Claudius II, wanted to end Christianity, so he outlawed Christianity and killed Christians.
Claudius waged war on many nations to make the kingdom of Rome larger, but he had a hard time recruiting soldiers. He believed this was because men didn’t want to leave their wives, so he outlawed marriage.
Valentine continued to preach about God, and whenever a Christian couple wanted to be married, he would perform the marriage ceremony. Because of this, he was arrested and jailed.
Emperor Claudius liked Saint Valentine and invited him to the palace many times to talk to him. Valentine knew Claudius needed to ask Jesus into his heart and be saved, so Valentine talked to Claudius about Jesus often.
This made the emperor furious, and he order Valentine to not mention Jesus again. Valentine knew Claudius would have him killed if he didn’t stop talking about Jesus, but he also knew Claudius needed to hear about Jesus. He made the decision to share the Gospel with the emperor.
The emperor became so furious that he order Valentine to renounce his faith. Valentine wouldn’t do that, and Claudius order him to be beaten with clubs. When he still wouldn’t renounce Jesus, Claudius ordered him stoned to death and beheaded. Valentine was buried on February 14th.
The life of Saint Valentine offers us these lessons:
- It is important to share the Gospel.
- Marriage is important to God.
- Don’t let anything, even death, stop you from declaring Jesus is Lord.