10 December 2020

Theresa Civantos Barber on Lessons from the Life of St. Nicholas

"St. Nicholas is a peculiar saint to consider closely. It seems like everybody, Christian or not, knows his name - jolly old St. Nick, right? But even though Santa Claus is a beloved figure all over the world, the historical record leaves us with little biographical information about the real man behind the legend. 

"To be sure, his historical existence is verifiable, and you can see his bones at the Basilica di San Nicola in Bari, Italy. In fact, in 2014, experts used 3D interactive technology and facial reconstruction to recreate what he may have looked like based on his bone structure. But the earliest surviving biography of the saint was written nearly 500 years after he died, so it can be hard to separate the myths from the facts.

"What we do know about his life, however, is both instructive and inspiring. He was an extraordinary man, whose goodness is still renowned more than 16 centuries after he died, and whose generosity has become an international byword. . . ."

In a recent commentary, writer Theresa Civantos Barber reflected on some of the ways men can turn to St. Nicholas for an example of holiness in action.

To access Mr. Kosloski's complete post, please visit:

Aleteia; Theresa Civantos Barber: 3 Lessons from the life of St. Nicholas for the modern man (6 DEC 20)

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