st. nicholasWritten by: Fr. Jason Kuntz

What we know for certain about St. Nicholas is that he was a bishop in what is modern Turkey during the fourth century.  Many legends exist about his charitable deeds.  One of the most popular stories is of a poor man who had three daughters for whom he was unable to provide a dowry.    In the night, St. Nicholas filled their stocking with bags of gold, giving them the necessary dowry to secure a suitable husband.

Today, dowries are no longer a requirement for marriage.  However, financial need is often an obstacle to individuals pursuing their vocation in life.  I know many couples who are postponing marriage solely because a modern wedding is so expensive.   While I try to encourage them to pursue a more modest celebration, family and cultural expectations prevail.

Others are unable to pursue a religious vocation because they have debts that must be paid off first.   The Mater Ecclesiae Fund has even been set up to assist young people wishing to pursue a vocation, but who are under financial obligation.

St. Nicholas is known as a gift giver.  A vocation is an individual’s gift of self to God and others.   If we support a vocation, we truly give a “gift that keeps on giving”!

Today we can pray for St. Nicholas to work more miracles in our world today – to remove the obstacles that are in the way of individuals pursuing their vocations in life.

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