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Yes, Virginia, There Is A St. Nick!

Proof positive, family and friends, there is a Saint Nicholas, Bishop of Myra (c. 325), who still roams about in Virginia!  The good bishop visited the children, parents, faculty and staff of Grace Episcopal School on December 2, 2011.  His feast day is December 6th.



Courtesy of Lesser Feasts and Fasts or Holy Women, Holy Men: Celebrating the Saints, here's a little background on Nicholas, Bishop of Myra:

"Very little is known about the life of Nicholas, except that he suffered torture and imprisonment during the persecution under the Emperor Diocletian.  It is possible that he was one of the bishops attending the First Ecumenical Council in Nicaea in 325.  He was honored as a saint in Constantinople in the 6th century by the Emperor Justinian.  His veneration became immensely popular in the West after the supposed removal of his body to Bari, Italy, in the late 11th century.  In England almost 400 churches were dedicated to him.

Nicholas is famed as the traditional patron of seafarers and sailors, and, more especially, of children.  As a bearer of gifts to children, his name ("Sinter Klaas") was brought to America by the Dutch colonists in New York, from whom he is popularly known as Santa Claus."

One of my favorite 'legends' regarding Nicholas, a protector of children, involved a young boy named Adeodatus (whose name means "Gift of God").  Adeodatus was kidnapped from his home by pirates on the Bishop's feast day (12/6).  Carried far away to serve as a slave serving a king in a palace, his sole responsibility each day was to bring the king wine in a golden goblet.  A year passed as his parent's grieved his being taken.  On December 6th, the distraught parents prayed to St. Nicholas for help.  Hearing their plea, the bishop found the boy and whisked him back home to be reunited with his parents; Adeodatus was still clutching the golden goblet in his hand as his parents threw their arms about him in great joy and thanksgiving and hugged him close.

                                         

Here, the Rector of Grace Episcopal Church/Chaplain of Grace Episcopal School and Bishop Nicholas share the 'legend' of the candy cane, shaped like the bishop's crozier, or shepherd's staff.  The white and red colors remind us of the purity of God's Only Son, Jesus Christ, and his blood, who was crucified, died, and rose again from the grave to redeem the sins of the whole world.

Comments

( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
(Anonymous)
Dec. 8th, 2011 09:29 pm (UTC)
Yes, There Is!
I saw and believed! Thank you for sharing the photos and your commentary.
mightyelmo
Dec. 11th, 2011 11:27 pm (UTC)
...why are you dressed like that?
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )

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