We are within a week of a holiday we don’t celebrate – at least not at the same time. Some years I’ll remember to make a card or do something thoughtful, other years he’ll remember. But we don’t do it because of the holiday. We do it because we love each other, because we think the other will appreciate it, because we remembered. It’s nice, sometimes, just to have a Valentine – someone who loves you and takes the time to tell you.

St. Valentine’s Day has an interesting history, and it does stem back to at least one saint. But why don’t we commemorate some of the other saint days? The cynic in me can’t help but notice how much marketing and promotion takes place and who’s really benefiting from that. I mean, my inner commentator rails, do any of us really NEED a box of chocolate just on this one day? NO! We need it EVERY WEEK. Do we need to be given $10 poetic cards with gold embossing in the middle of February? NO! We need scrawled notes on our shower walls, love letters in our lunch boxes, unexpected moments of appreciation sprinkled in our everyday lives.

This weekend, we celebrate World Marriage Sunday in the United States. It coincides nicely, every year, with Valentine’s Day. In many parishes, marriages are blessed before the dismissal of Mass. So let’s look at our blessed marriages, these vital vocations we’re involved in, and let’s take the intention of Valentine’s Day to a new level. Let’s resolve to honor our spouses, to cherish our children, to take that role of spouse and make it resound with a grand smile and applause from the heavens.

That’s a tall order for me. I’m doing good to write Hubby a little note everyday. How can I do better? How can I make sure he feels like my Valentine all year long? How can we fan the flame of love into the fires of our marriage?

Yeah, I’m an idealist and a romantic. Some say I’m hopeless. And isn’t that what we’re called to be? Isn’t our model the love pouring forth from the Father to the Son?

If you’re going card shopping, why not start a tradition this Valentine’s Day? Why not make this a frequent thing? Why not see what happens?

And if you’re like us, and you don’t so much remember the hoopla of Valentine’s Day, why not make an exception to start something? Not because it’s Valentine’s Day, but because you love your spouse, because your spouse will probably enjoy your effort (whether it’s a card or something else), because we all like to be told we’re loved in new and interesting ways.