St. Valentine, The Real Story – Church History


Chapter 38

Derbie sat huddled in the corner of the room, her chin resting on her knee, she was hungry, thirsty, tired with a million and one thoughts going through her head at the same time. What were these guys up to?

Where had Jeje been moved to now and who the hell was that damn woman who had shot into the ceiling, bringing about an end to Derbie’s outburst when Jeje was being taken?

Since the past few hours Jeje had been moved she’d begun some seriously deep thinking, she couldn’t just sit by and let these guys get away with this, she had to do something. Usually she wasn’t one to just lie around and take things sitting down but she’d had to because of Jeje’s safety.

Now that she was sure Jeje had been moved out of the building she knew she had to act. She didn’t think she was ready to die yet and passively for that matter.

She was too intelligent and crafty to be just sitting around and waiting for whatever to happen to her. She could do so much more, living a normal life for a few weeks had turned her into a softie, she had Ise to thank for that.

The old Derbie would have been planning an escape route since the minute she’d been abducted. She used to be a master strategist, but being with Ise, she’d put her old life aside for a while.

She thought about Ise for a while, he’d been on her mind for most of the time she’d been held captive, she was sure he was out of his mind with worry by now, having both she and Jeje taken away from him would be hell on him. She could almost imagine what he would be going through and felt sorry for him.

She almost smiled at the Irony of it, she was the one who’d been kidnapped but she was feeling sorry for someone else who was out there, she couldn’t help it, he wasn’t just anyone, he was Ise, the love of her life. He was so obsessive compulsive about everything, she knew exactly how he would be feeling.

She had to put him out of that misery and do something instead of sitting and waiting. She knew from his end he will do all he could to find them but she had to help also but what to do?

Thinking for a few more minutes, she decided that she deserved some sort of information as to why she was being kept here and why Jeje had been taken away and something told her that, her captor, the woman whom she’d seen quite a lot of, the one who seemed to be calling the shots might just be willing to divulge some information. Women and their big mouths.

If the woman refused to talk, she could entice her with something. She still had that expensive wristwatch on her, tucked securely underneath her weave sometime during the drive to where she was now being held, on the day she had been abducted. It could be used as a bargaining chip, she thought.

“Oh my goodness!” She almost screamed aloud as realisation dawned. What the hell had been wrong with her? She’d not been thinking at all, she’d carried the key to her release in her hands all this while and she’d been acting like an helpless sheep. She’d definitely lost her touch “Ise Williams, what did you do to me?” she wondered briefly.

Within a few minutes, she had an idea what needed to be done and knew how she would go about it. Whoever said there was a silver lining behind every cloud definitely had a point, the Cartier wristwatch might actually save her.

“Hey! Hey!” She began to call out, hoping to God that this would work.

Ise sat in his study, deep in thought. He’d just entertained a not so cordial visit from the Inspector General of police himself. He had chastised him on negotiating with kidnappers and keeping the police out of the loop. Ise had lost his temper and had talked back quite disrespectfully to him, giving him a lecture on keeping information safe and secure.

He told him since someone in the police had let it slip that a woman was involved in the abduction, he decided to keep them out of it because he couldn’t trust them. Not to leak valuable information.

The Inspector had gone on to deny the information l

Flowers, candy, red hearts and romance. That’s what Valentine’s day is all about, right? Well, maybe not.

The origin of this holiday for the expression of love really isn’t romantic at all — at least not in the traditional sense. Father Frank O’Gara of Whitefriars Street Church in Dublin, Ireland, tells the real story of the man behind the holiday — St. Valentine.

“He was a Roman Priest at a time when there was an emperor called Claudias who persecuted the church at that particular time,” Father O’Gara explains. ” He also had an edict that prohibited the marriage of young people. This was based on the hypothesis that unmarried soldiers fought better than married soldiers because married soldiers might be afraid of what might happen to them or their wives or families if they died.”

“I think we must bear in mind that it was a very permissive society in which Valentine lived,” says Father O’Gara. “Polygamy would have been much more popular than just one woman and one man living together. And yet some of them seemed to be attracted to Christian faith. But obviously the church thought that marriage was very sacred between one man and one woman for their life and that it was to be encouraged. And so it immediately presented the problem to the Christian church of what to do about this.”

“The idea of encouraging them to marry within the Christian church was what Valentine was about. And he secretly married them because of the edict.”

Valentine was eventually caught, imprisoned and tortured for performing marriage ceremonies against command of Emperor Claudius the second. There are legends surrounding Valentine’s actions while in prison.

“One of the men who was to judge him in line with the Roman law at the time was a man called Asterius, whose daughter was blind. He was supposed to have prayed with and healed the young girl with such astonishing effect that Asterius himself became Christian as a result.”

In the year 269 AD, Valentine was sentenced to a three part execution of a beating, stoning, and finally decapitation all because of his stand for Christian marriage. The story goes that the last words he wrote were in a note to Asterius’ daughter. He inspired today’s romantic missives by signing it, “from your Valentine.”

“What Valentine means to me as a priest,” explains Father O’Gara, “is that there comes a time where you have to lay your life upon the line for what you believe. And with the power of the Holy Spirit we can do that — even to the point of death.”

Valentine’s martyrdom has not gone unnoticed by the general public. In fact, Whitefriars Street Church is one of three churches that claim to house the remains of Valentine. Today, many people make the pilgrimage to the church to honor the courage and memory of this Christian saint.

“Valentine has come to be known as the patron saint of lovers. Before you enter into a Christian marriage you want some sense of God in your life — some great need of God in your life. And we know, particularly in the modern world, many people are meeting God through his Son, Jesus Christ.”

“If Valentine were here today, he would say to married couples that there comes a time where you’re going to have to suffer. It’s not going to be easy to maintain your commitment and your vows in marriage. Don’t be surprised if the ‘gushing’ love that you have for someone changes to something less “gushing” but maybe much more mature. And the question is, is that young person ready for that?”

“So on the day of the marriage they have to take that into context,” Father O’Gara says. “Love — human love and sexuality is wonderful, and blessed by God — but also the shadow of the cross. That’s what Valentine means to me.”