Wednesday, November 17, 2010

December 18: Saint Nicholas

*Grab a few socks (I always have plenty in my "missing sock" bag!) and wrap them. Make sure to have just a couple pieces of candy ready to place in the socks once the children are asleep.

  • Read Galations 2:10.
"All they asked was that we should continue to remember the poor, the very thing I had been eager to do all along."

  • Give your children a chance to open their "stockings."

  • Explain to your children the history and legends surrounding Saint Nicholas. A summary of the legend is:
A long time ago, there was a man named Saint Nicholas. He was widely known for the good deeds he performed, helping the helpless and giving to the needy. It was said that he gave up all his money and inheritance to travel the countryside and help those in need. One legend has Saint Nicholas sailing into a sea-side town to give gifts to children right around the time of his birthday (December 6th). This is likely where our initial cultural traditions of gift-giving began. Another legend says that a similar figure, "Father Christmas" left goodies for boys and girls who left their stockings out. This legend is the basis for our "stocking stuffers" today.
  • Talk about the generosity of Saint Nicholas.

  • Encourage your children to think of how they can help the helpless and needy this holiday season. Brainstorm ideas with your children and make an effort to follow through.

  • Ask your children if they would like to hang their stockings, just as the boys and girls in the legend did. Be sure to add a piece of candy to the stockings once the children are asleep!

  • Thank God for the things he has blessed your family with. Thank Him for the example of Saint Nicholas and ask God to help your family be generous with what you have.

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