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Nicholas of Myra

The original “old Saint Nick” who inspired the tradition of Santa Claus, Nicholas was bishop of Myra in fourth century Turkey. Little is known about his life except that he entrusted himselfto Jesus at an early age and, when his parents died, gave all of their possessions to the poor. While serving as bishop, Nicholas learned of three girls who were going to be sold into slavery by their father. Moved to use the church’s wealth to ransom the lives of these little ones, he tossed three bags of gold through the family’s window. We remember this ancient Christmas gift, even as we remember that 1.2 million children are trafficked each year in the global sex trade today. - From Common Prayer