It’s Valentine’s Day and people all over the world will be celebrating with their loved ones, whether it’s gifting flowers, candy or enjoying a romantic dinner for two.
Valentine’s Day is linked to Saint Valentine of Terni, the saint for love, couples, and young people. Details on the life of Saint Valentine aren’t clear, but it is believed that he was beheaded and buried on February 14.
Belvedere Marittimo is slowly becoming known as the “City of Love” because of its ties to this famous saint.
Many people don’t know this, but for about 300 years the Friars Minor Capuchin monks in the Convent of San Daniele have been safely keeping partial relics of Saint Valentine. The Convent, which lies just outside of the town and overlooks the impressive Riviera dei Cedri, was built in 1599 in honor of the monk turned saint, San Daniele.
San Daniele was born in Belvedere but, in 1227 in Morocco, he was beheaded along with six other monks for professing his Christian faith. Many, many years later, in 1616, he was canonized.
So, how exactly did the relics of Saint Valentine end up in a hilltop convent of a seaside town in Calabria? Well, the reason isn’t exactly clear, however recent research has uncovered that the relics were given to the convent in 1710 as a gift from the Pope. At some point the relics were “lost” only to be found again within the convent in 1969.
And so, it is in this convent that every year on Valentine’s Day, couples in Belvedere who are celebrating important wedding milestones such as Silver, Gold, Diamond or Platinum anniversaries can choose to renew their vows in the presence of the relics of this famous saint of love. How special is that?
We will be staying in Belvedere Marittio has part of our Yoga and Wine Tour from September 11-18, 2017. We’d love for you to come along so we can share this wonderful seaside town with you. Contact us for details!