It seems each year a growing number of people are downplaying the importance of Santa Claus. I would like to express my concern over this so I have sent this.
There has long been some opposition to teaching children to believe in Santa Claus. However, the Claus tradition has religious origins that can be helpful in teaching children of all ages the values of humility and giving.
The legend of Santa Claus can actually be traced to St. Nicholas of Myra, a bishop in the early Christian church who was known for his generosity and love of children.
One of the most famous stories of the generosity of St. Nicholas says that he threw bags of gold through an open window in the house of a poor man to serve as dowry for the man’s daughters, who otherwise would have been sold into slavery. The gold is said to have landed in the family’s shoes, which were drying near the fire.
This is why children leave their shoes out by the door, or hang their stockings by the fireplace in the hopes of receiving a gift on the eve of his feast day, December 6 or on Christmas Eve, December 24.
St. Nicholas is associated with Christmas because of the tradition that he had the custom of giving secret gifts to children. It is also conjectured that the saint, who was known to wear red robes and have a long white beard, was culturally converted into the large man with a reindeer-drawn sled full of toys because in German, his name is “San Nikolaus” which almost sounds like “Santa Claus.”
In the spirit of St. Nicholas let us all make each day of the year like Christmas.
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