Thursday, November 19, 2009

Saint Nicholas

When I got engaged, I decided to convert to a Catholic so that my children would not be confused about their religions. I have now found out that my hubsand is confused about his religion anyway. Even though, he has been a Catholic all of his life. He did not know what the meaning of St Nick night was. All he could tell me was that his mother would fill his stocking as a child on December 6th and say that St. Nick had been. As he got older, his mother would give them a gift before. Usually this gift was something that they needed such as a pair of shoes or new coat.

Now, I can understand why she gave the gift because as the winter comes we do need winter stuff. But I was not satisfied this year, I know that in the future my kids are going to want to know what exactly it means. We can not afford to send them to Catholic school.

As I am shopping last year for the stocking supplies, I ran into this delightful woman who started up a conversation with me about Saint Nick. I asked her if she knew what exactly we are celebrating to which she told me no it was just something they always did. As we were talking about, we were interrupted by another lady who wanted to know if we knew the meaning. She didn't either. She had converted and her husband couldn't tell her. Not only that her daughter was now asking "Isn't Saint Nick...Santa Claus?" So its official I knew my kids would ask.

At this point, an older lady told us that Saint Nick was a celebrating of something that we wouldn't do if we knew the truth. She said there was this town that was pretty much broke and that they did not have any food. So this man took three children and cooked them. He then gave this food to the town and they made him a Saint for saving his town.

Now I was hoping that this woman was wrong because I won't be celebrating such an awful thing. I came home and told Kenny about it. He told me that he doesn't think that’s true. So I did some research and here is a synopsis of what I found:

Nicholas was brought up extremely well by his parents. His parents passed away when he was very young. It was his determination to devote his inheritance to works of charity. The first of which was when he found out that a citizen had lost all of his money. This man was going to have to have his three daughters who could not find a husband because they did not have a dowry go into prostitution. When Nicholas found out he threw a bag of gold into the house. The first daughter was married off shortly after because she now had a dowry. Nicholas then followed suit with the other girls until they were married. Now the father did find out who it was and overwhelmed him with his gratitude.

There was a picture on the three purses which came to be mistaken for the heads of three children and so this gave is what the old lady was talking about. These children were not killed by Saint Nicholas but by an innkeeper that she spoke of.

For more information, check out http://www.catholic.org/saints/saint.php?saint_id=371

12 comments:

thesouthernlady64 said...

Very interesting post. I am so glad the old lady was wrong! I live between Frankfort and Lawrenceburg, Kentucky. I just turned 64. I retired from state government in Frankfort in 2005. Thanks for visiting me.

Menopausal New Mom said...

That's all just too confusing for me. I think I will just stick with Santa this year and call it a day!

CountessLaurie said...

Well, thank goodness! What an interesting story. Too bad that woman didn't have the withwhereall (is that even a word?) to go find out and simply believed the bad stuff.

yonca said...

Very interesting! Thanks for sharing. I'll click the link and read more about it!

Just Breathe said...

We did this as kids. I was told that it was a Dutch tradition. (We were not Dutch.) I did it for my kids too when they were young and my sister still does it for her Grandchildren. We would put a stocking out on the evening of the 5th. I was told that the Dutch would put out their wooden shoes!
Anyway I did find this site:
http://www.stnicholascenter.org/Brix?pageID=92

Noelle said...

i grew up catholic and even went to catholic school and had never heard of this "holiday" until about a month ago when a friend told me that they celebrate st. nick day. thanks for the information...i was completely in the dark!

kys said...

I have never heard of this before.

Sara @ Domestically Challenged said...

I have never heard this either. Pretty cool, thanks for sharing!

Serendipity said...

I'm glad that the lady's version of the story wasn't true!

bettyl said...

In addition, I heard that he threw the money down the chimney and it scattered into socks and shoes around the hearth, thus starting the tradition of 'hanging your stockings'.

You truly don't want to know the truth about Halloween *shudder*

hummer said...

Mercy Had never heard the first story. Glad too. My husband's middle name was Nicholas and he had fun saying I am Saint Nicholas at Christmas time. Thanks for sharing. I like your blog and hat you are proud to be a mom.

Angela said...

Phew. You freaked me out there for a minute. lol