Merry Christmas St Nicholas

stnicholasIt’s Christmas, so I looked up St Nicholas. He was orphaned and inherited a fortune, then spent his life in religion and in giving to the poor. He once gave three young women a bag of gold each to save them from the dire fate they faced if because of their father’s poverty, they would have no dowry to make them marriageable. Some stories say he came down the chimney at night to leave the gold so as to save them the embarassment of having to accept  charity. Or something.

He also saved some sailors and is the guardian of sailors and boatmen in Greece.

I rather like his rich bishop’s robes. It seems unusual for a saint to be also a wealthy fellow but this seems to be a case where he wasn’t sainted just for having a successful church career. In our times of greedy bankers etc, it seems appropriate to reflect on who should be giving out all the presents, and who, receive them.

I wish you a rich Christmas full of inspiration and peace; if I had any gold coins as well I might consider giving them to you…but I don’t so you’ll have to make do with this gold-painted picture.

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