This time of year is usually hectic for me, but I've been reminded that I'm only human and need to slow down today. Probably just a sinus infection and not as bad as the news about our parish priest. If you're so inclined, say a prayer for Father Bob (he looks like Santa Claus without the beard). He went into the hospital with pneumonia and a bleeding ulcer...he's since had a stroke while in the hospital.
His sermon, right before being admitted into the hospital, was about St. Nicholas, after whom Santa Claus was fashioned.
Back in St. Nicholas' day, a father needed to have a dowry in order for his daughter to be able to marry. St. Nicholas heard about a man who had 3 daughters, but the family was so poor that those daughters would never be able to marry.
According to www.WhyChristmas.com: " One night, Nicholas secretly dropped a bag of gold down the chimney and into the house (This meant that the oldest daughter was then able to be married.). The bag fell into a stocking that had been hung by the fire to dry! This was repeated later with the second daughter. Finally, determined to discover the person who had given him the money, the father secretly hid by the fire every evening until he caught Nicholas dropping in a bag of gold. Nicholas begged the man to not tell anyone what he had done, because he did not want to bring attention to himself. But soon the news got out and when anyone received a secret gift, it was thought that maybe it was from Nicholas."
I wish you Peace this holiday season. May we never take for granted what has been given to us.