December 6th is Saint Nicholas Day! Never heard of it? (Trust me, it’s way better than an Elf on a Shelf.)
In parts of Europe, the children stuff hay, carrots, and letters for Saint Nic in their shoes for his donkey and in the morning they find them filled with “gold” from Saint Nick....(a Lump O’ Gold Donkey milk soap or an orange would work if you don’t own a gold mine.)
The gold comes from the story that St. Nic rescued three girls whose father was about to sell them into slavery (and prostitution, but you might leave that part out of the bedtime story) by secretly tossing lumps of gold in their window by night. They say the gold fell in the girls stocking, hung out to dry for the night.
Now for the rest of the story....”these three bags of gold (with which the saint is often depicted) became the heads of three little boys who were murdered by an evil maniac. The holy bishop not only uncovered the crime but restored the children to life. It is common and appropriate to decry the commercialization of the Christmas season....St. Nicholas does deserve to be the patron of children...His wealthy parents, who raised him to be a devout Christian, died in an epidemic while Nicholas was still young. Obeying Jesus’ words to “sell what you own and give the money to the poor,” Nicholas used his whole inheritance to assist the needy, the sick, and the suffering. He dedicated his life to serving God....But he might be remembered not only as the jolly source of toys and treats but also as the protector of those whose lives and innocence remain threatened today, as they were in the time of St. Nicholas, by violence, poverty, and exploitation.”
For those of you who’ve bought our soap and skincare this year, your “gold coins” are gifts that have literally filled our donkeys with hay, and put food on our table. You’ve helped us keep giving the milk that children need to help set them free from slavery to sickness and disease.
You’ve played the part of St. Nicholas, and you didn’t even have to wear a red suit and a beard to do it.
Thank you. From our family. And the children. And the donkeys.
Photo credit and Saint Nicholas facts from www.StNicholausCenter.org
Donkey pics on our farm photography by https://chrisbakerphotography.org/
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