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Archbishop of Myra in Lycia
Commemorated on December 6
St. Nicholas was born in the 3rd century A.D. in the town of Patara in Lycia,
a Greek-speaking part of the Roman Empire.  Today this area lies on the
southern coast of Turkey.  He was the only son of wealthy but pious
Christian parents who died in an epidemic when Nicholas was still young.  
He was raised by his uncle Nicholas, Bishop of Patara.  Even as a youth, St.
Nicholas dedicated his life to serving God and used his entire inheritance to
assist the poor.  He was ordained a presbyter of the Church and was
imprisoned during the persecutions of the Roman Emperor Diocletian.  He
was still a young man when he was elected Bishop of the city of Myra (now
Demre, Turkey).  He was widely known for his generosity to the poor and as
a protector of the innocent and wronged.  He is the patron saint of children.

One well-known story concerns a man of Patara who lost all his money and
intended to sell his three daughters into prostitution because he could not
afford dowries for them.  Wishing to help in secret and to spare the father
the humiliation of accepting charity, Nicholas, at night, threw three bags of
gold through an open window for the girls, saving them from a life of
shame and degradation.  

St. Nicholas had once desired a life of solitude as a monk, but heard a voice
from heaven telling him to work among the people.  He was a true shepherd
of his flock, known far and wide for assisting the needy, the sick, and the
suffering.  He passed from this life on December 6, 343 A.D.

St. Nicholas is loved and honored by Christians around the world.  Many
miracles are attributed to his intercession.  Eastern Orthodox, Roman
Catholic, Anglican, and many Protestant believers all hold him in high
esteem.  His memory is also greatly respected by present-day Moslem Turks
from his home region.
St. Nicholas
Our Patron and Inspiration
As a rule of faith, an image of meekness,
and a teacher of self-control, the truth of
your deeds revealed you to your flock. and
through poverty, riches.  Father and
Hierarch Nicholas, intercede with Christ
God that our souls may be saved.
             --Apolytikion, Tone 4
St. Nicholas Uganda Children's Fund
P.O. Box 285
Chardon, OH  44024


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