ST NICHOLAS, BISHOP AND CONFESSOR – MEMORIAL: DECEMBER 6
Nicholas was born in the famous city of Patara in Lycia. From infancy, he fasted on Wednesday and Friday. He kept up this custom during the rest of his life. Having lost his parents when he was a young man, he gave all his goods to the poor. A noble example of his charity is seen in the fact that he secretly gave money sufficiently for a marriage dowry for three girls who were in great peril of falling into sin.
HE WENT TO MYRA
After having made a pilgrimage to Palestine, inspired by God, he went to Myra, the metropolis of Lycia, which had lost its bishop by death, and with no dissent but with wondrous concord, he was selected by the provincial bishops.
A MODEL OF EVERY VIRTUE
During his episcopate he proved himself a model of every virtue. Contrary to the edict of Diocletian and Maximian, he had preached the truth of Christian faith, and he was cast into prison where he remained until Constantine became emperor. He took part in the Council of Nicea where the Arian heresy was condemned. After he had returned to his see, he died a most holy death at Myra [ca. A. D. 342]. His body was taken to Bari in Apulia, and is the object of universal veneration in that place.
O God, you who made the holy Bishop Nicholas renowned for his countless miracles, grant, we beseech you, that by his merits and prayers we may be saved from the fires of hell. Through our Lord…
– From: An Approved English Translation of the Breviarium Romanum, Burns & Oates, London, 1964