Valentine's Day is a pagan, anti-courtship holiday
Perhaps it is too early to bring up this topic, but I plan to be otherwise engaged on Monday.
Valentine's Day is a difficult day for single ATI students. Back in my Institute staff years, they used to throw huge, platonic Valentine's Banquets (maybe they still do). The young ladies would decorate the dining room with red and white balloons, napkins, candy and other knick knacks, and we'd have an extra-formal meal. Whoever was in charge would give a few words about the day. Invariably they'd recognize some of the older staff parents who would talk about how they met. "Back when Joyce and I were dating -- we didn't have courtship back then; we weren't as lucky as you kids...."
It always struck me as odd. If we students were supposed to be satisfied, single people committed to God and courtship, why did we celebrate a holiday dedicated to love and spooning? You'd think Valentine's would rank pretty high on the Evil Holiday List, right up there with Halloween and Gay Pride Week.
The whole event was rather defrauding, especially for the young ladies on staff who were taught to become good Proverbs 31 women while eschewing useless fantasies of the Jeanette Oake and L.M. Montgomery type. Resourceful staff guys took advantage of the annually permissible co-ed dinner seating, assuming that with all the love in the air they might get away with looking a girl in the eyes. The really smooth guys would describe the wonderful plans he had for his future wife. Plans usually involving roses and moonlight and other emotional delights. Hoping, of course, to hear those prized words: "Oh, that's SO sweet!"
It's time for the hypocrisy to stop. I hereby call on all IBLP staff to terminate any celebration of this carnal holiday and to instead celebrate Courtship Day: a day for dedicated young people to return to their vows of celibacy and re-commit themselves to seeking only God's best for their life, which of course does not involve love or relationships. Perhaps IBLP staff could have segregated encouragement sessions of four-part testimonies and singing. After all, IBLP staff is held up as a shining example for the thousands of young ATI students studying at home. It would be wrong to cause these weaker brothers and sisters to stumble.