Valentine’s Day is almost here, a time when couples use gifts and acts of kindness to show their love for one another. But, who was Valentine and why do we celebrate the day in the way that we do. Wait, was Valentine even a real person?!

Dr. Patricia Janzen Loewen, assistant professor of history at Providence University College is helping us to understand the origins of Valentine's Day and why we celebrate it.

Dr. Janzen Loewen says there are a lot of legends on St. Valentine, but it's hard to find any factual evidence. She says all of the legends seem to end with Saint Valentine being sentenced to death by an emperor for helping people out.

Persecution was prevalent during this time, according to Dr. Janzen Loewen. She says there was persecution towards Christians because they refused to participate in the cult of the emperor.

Listen to today's conversation to find out the rest of the story and the origins of Valentine's Day.