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The Joy Of Giving- Santa Claus

Discussion in 'Interesting Shares' started by AliceMargaret, Dec 16, 2021.

  1. AliceMargaret

    AliceMargaret Senior IL'ite

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    “The Joy of Giving- Santa Claus”

    Long ago, in the country of Lycia, there lived a nobleman who had three daughters. He was a good, kind father and, while his daughters were young, he was able to give them all the things they needed because he was very rich.

    When the girls grew up, troubles fell on the family and their father lost all his money. The family became so poor that often the girls did not have enough to eat and had to go to bed without any supper.

    The time came when the girls wished to get married, but their parents told them sadly that they had no money for marriage, and this made the girls very unhappy.

    In a monastery nearby there lived a saintly man called Nicholas. He heard about the plight of this family and was very sorry for them. His parents had left him some money when they died, but he felt it would be wrong to use it for himself. He loved people, because he loved Jesus, and he wanted to do the sort of things Jesus would do.

    ‘Now there is a family I should help,’ thought Nicholas, ‘but I must do it without them seeing me or they will want to thank me. God has entrusted my money to me so that I can help others. It is God whom they must thank.’

    So he went to his treasure chest and counted out a bag of gold coins. He waited until it was evening and then he set off into the darkness.

    As he drew near the nobleman’s house he saw, by the light of the moon, that one of the windows was open. He dropped the bag of gold through the open window, and turned and hurried away.

    When the nobleman found the bag of gold on the floor he was very surprised.

    ‘Wherever can this have come from?’ he asked, but as no one had seen Nicholas, no one could tell him.

    ‘It must be a gift from a very kind person,’ he thought and, because he too was kind, he gave the gold to his eldest daughter. She was delighted. Now she had money and could marry.

    A few nights later Nicholas went to the house again with a second bag of gold, and dropped it through the open window as before. Again he made sure no one saw him, and when the nobleman found the gold he was more puzzled than ever. He gave the gift to his second daughter, and she was delighted: now she too would be able to marry. The nobleman decided he would keep watch for the next few nights to see if he could discover who his kind friend was.

    When Nicholas came for the third time, the girls’ father was ready for him. Just as Nicholas was turning to go, the nobleman appeared out of the shadows and caught hold of his robe. He drew him into the moonlight.

    ‘Why! It’s Nicholas, the servant of God!’ he exclaimed in amazement. ‘Why do you hide yourself away like this?’

    Nicholas replied that he did not want the world to praise him for his deeds. ‘It is God who sent me to you, for he put the thoughts into my mind. You must give him the thanks,’ he finished.

    So the nobleman and his wife had the joy of giving all three daughters a lovely wedding; and how happy they all were! But the one who had the greatest happiness of all was Nicholas himself, because he had discovered that there is no higher joy than in making others happy.

    Later, Nicholas became Bishop of Myra, and spent his life helping others. Many years after he died, he was made a saint, and is now called Saint Nicholas.

    The story of Saint Nicholas spread across the world and other people wanted to copy his good deeds. So when children receive presents at Christmas, and no one sees who brings them, it is said that Santa Claus has brought them. Santa Claus is another name for Saint Nicholas and, dressed in his red robes, he is known the world over. Some call him Father Christmas, but whatever Saint Nicholas is called, his kind actions are remembered as people copy his deeds and leave presents without being seen to do so.

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